Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Commercial Girls

In the last week there have been a couple songs in television ads that have caught my attention. One of which is vastly known around People-In-The-Know circle and the other still living in a bit of obscurity. The more "obvious" example is Apple's use of Feist's "1234" in their new iPod Nano ad. The other ad is for the second season of NBC's Heroes that uses a song by one of my favorite personal secret artists Rosie Thomas. Only hearing 30-60 seconds of each song seems somewhat unfair, so I wanted to share the wealth.

Leslie Feist first hit my unknowing ears on the Broken Social Scene album You Forgot It in People (2002) and fell off the radar for a couple years until her breakout solo album Let It Die garnered critical acclaim across the board. She is a mellow songstress with a captivating voice and a penchant for melody. Her live shows have been known as very laid back and she doesn't always seem excited to perform in public. Her newest album The Reminder was highly anticipated and remains on top sales charts. This new album sees her with more mainstream sensibilities as well as sleeker production.

Rosie Thomas is a gem. One of those artists that I've enjoyed since I first heard her album If Song Could Be Held (2005). While I have yet to experience her newest release These Friends of Mine (2007), from her new label Nettwerk (formerly on SubPop), I have a good feeling about it. It's quite short (only about 30min) and sees her recording anywhere she pleases from the studio to the kitchen. This range of spaces gave her the freedom to create wherever inspiration struck. It was recorded over a period of a couple years in her friend Sufjan Stevens' Brooklyn apartment with him and songwriter friend Denison Witmer. Somewhat ironically, she wanted more freedom from due dates and pressure that SubPop was placing on her, and made the jump to Nettwerk. With the debut of that Heroes ad she may not stay as much a secret any longer.

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