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Merry Christmas!  It’s once again time for The Blah Blah’s annual Christmas mix cd – Have a Blah Christmas.  Hope you like it.

Download or preview the MP3s individually, or get the whole thing (complete with cover art) in one massive zip file here.

Otherwise, I apologize but the songs aren’t edited to be in the correct order according to track number.  You’ll have to do that yourself.  I just ran out of time.

Enjoy the mix, and stop by the Sounds Familyre Blog for A Familyre Christmas, Vol. 1 and 2, with more great Christmas music.

1. Rosie Thomas – Christmas Time is Here (Download or Stream)
2. Lenny Smith – Finally, It’s Christmas Eve (Download or Stream)
3. Sufjan Stevens – We’re Goin’ to the Country (Download or Stream)
4. Over the Rhine – Little Town (Download or Stream)
5. Anathallo – Come Ye Sinners (Download or Stream)
6. Elin Smith – Oh Holy Night (Download or Stream)
7. Threnody Ensemble – Cello MiscO2 Mix01 (Download or Stream)
8. Joe Dorsey – Silent Night (Download or Stream)
9. Alli Rogers – O Little Town of Bethlehem (Download or Stream)
10. All Stars – Jesus is the Reason for the Season (Download or Stream)
11. Ryan Dean – To Us a Child of Hope is Born (Download or Stream)
12. Robbie Seay Band – Song of Hope (acoustic) (Download or Stream)
13. Mike (?) – Greensleaves (Download or Stream)
14. Joshua Stamper – Immanuel (Download or Stream)
15. Sleeping at Last – Merry Little Christmas Volume Up (Download or Stream)
16. Over the Rhine – One Olive Jingle (Download or Stream)

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Note: All MP3s will be removed after one week.

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I’m not even sure what I can possibly say about Josh Garrels, other than the fact that he brings some of the most authentic and unique music to the Christian indie scene.  He writes songs that would be considered overtly Christian, but most likely so Christian that you would never hear them on any contemporary Christian station or like avenues.

The music is a mixture of classic beats with a modern folk twist. I saw him for the first time when I was at a conference in California, and I honestly think people didn’t know what to do with him.  He was using some old school beats, like from the 40’s and 50’s, mixed with his masterful guitar playing and amazing voice.  I left that night at that coffeehouse greatly encouraged, and very surprised that someone this good has been under the radar for so long.

The sad things is that Josh Garrels most likely will never rise to Christian stardom, but he is more talented than most Christian rock stars.  He sounds like Jack Johnson meeting classic Simon and Garfunkel, but even better!  He has a few albums, at this point, and just released his latest full-length titled Jacaranda. 

Josh is an Indianapolis/Muncie Indiana native and now currently resides in North Carolina.  I am not sure what else to really say about him, other than the fact that he is one gifted individual, and he uses his talent not for his glory, but to be an authentic and real voice in a Christian world that thrives on the exterior.  He brings deep insight and challenges the listener with his call to be real.

Check out his website. I’m pretty sure there are a few downloads on there, but here are some songs that he wanted me to pass along:

Zion and Babylon – Download – Stream
Don’t Wait for Me – Download – Stream

Website: www.joshgarrels.com
MySpace: www.myspace.com/joshgarrels

Download MP3s at Itunes
Buy CDs on his website

Note: All MP3s will be removed after one week

Don Chaffer is a pretty recognizable name in certain circles of the music industry.  Whether it’s his solo projects, his years with Waterdeep, or his new project The Khrusty Brothers, the guy deserves the attention he gets.

The first time I heard of The Khrusty Brothers, I thought, “Who the heck would name their new band that?!”  It’s a weird name.  Relax, the music is weird too, so it fits.

With that, the first time I heard their self-titled album, I didn’t like it.  It was weird, but not quite weird enough; normal, but not quite normal enough.  It felt stuck somewhere between really weird, trippy, cool alt-folk… and more normal, well-written, expertly-played classic folk. Read the rest of this entry »

I stumbled across this video the other day of David Crowder playing a Guitar Hero guitar for the song “Neverending” at a concert this past March.

I want that guitar.

A guest post by my wife, Jessie:

For a long time, I have wanted to learn to play banjo, and so this year Jake and I finally purchased one for me to learn on. It’s a handmade, open-back style banjo, the kind used in old-tyme and folk music, the kind you play clawhammer style (as opposed to bluegrass style, for those of you familiar with those styles of playing the banjo). I like the banjo for it’s plunky sound, and because it is easier for me to fret the chords on a banjo rather than on a guitar with my small hands. Anyway, I get frustrated with the learning process often as it’s always difficult to learn something new, so I’ve been making myself listen to more artists lately that include banjo in their music. It’s actually relatively easy to find bands that have a banjo-ist included that are not bluegrass or old-tyme bands now that banjo is becoming one of the more “hip” instruments to play, thanks to Bela Fleck, Iron and Wine, Sufjan Stevens, and others.

Read the rest of this entry »

I filled in for a friend this past week on his paper routes again, and one night I stuck the MP3 player on repeat with Cory Asbury and Matt Gilman’s new album Holy.  To be honest, I didn’t care for Matt Gilman’s style that much, so I didn’t download any of his songs from the album, only Cory’s.

I like to play worship music while driving through the night delivering papers.  It helps me stay focused on God, gives me some time with Him amidst the insanity of paper delivery, and keeps me from whining and feeling sorry for myself.

I once listened to Colour Revolt for four hours on the routes, and as much as I love those guys, I’d rather have lines like “Be exalted in our praises, be exalted in our love” get stuck in my head than “We call it mattresses underwater but the gutters are seeping.”  Then I’m not just hanging out in the middle of the night listening to good music – I’m actually building myself up.

Read the rest of this entry »

I haven’t checked my Blah Blah e-mail in a few months (sorry, if you’ve tried to get ahold of me), and now I’m scared to check it.

I’m scared that I’ll open it up and I’ll have thousands of unread e-mails… most of them from angry Medieval dwarves with axes… riding on skateboards… and singing about spandex.

It’s irrational, I know, but it haunts me all the same.

And I don’t even get that much e-mail coming through really, just enough to get really clogged up if I don’t check it in a few months.  Not like these guys who declared e-mail bankruptcy last year.

I think I’m less bankrupt and more anti-social when it comes to my e-mail.  It’s not on purpose, though…  It’s just how it has worked out lately.

All this e-mail stuff reminds me of Brother Andrew, the famous God Smuggler, who refused to even have a phone in his office because he didn’t want to be distracted.  Sometimes I think that’d be nice.  Until I try to order pizza with my telegraph.

Jon Foreman didn’t leave the “h” out of his name because he can’t spell.  He didn’t forget the rules of Wheel of Fortune and think he had to buy consonants, finding himself only able to afford two for his first name.  No, he leaves the “h” out just because he can.

That’s how cool he is.

You probably know Jon Foreman from the band Switchfoot, which has been around since 1996, but he’s got some great solo stuff that you should check out.

I actually only own a few of his songs, because most of his solo stuff isn’t available on e-music, and since I’m danged near broke, I don’t like to pay $1 per download.  So until e-music gets more Jon Foreman up, I’ll have to listen to my three songs of his over and over again.  Life is so cruel sometimes…

Read the rest of this entry »

Ever since I first heard about Cold War Kids, I’ve been listening to them non-stop.  The edgy vocals, the soulful rock and roll music, the great writing… these guys are great.

If you haven’t gotten on the bandwagon yet, go get their new album Loyalty to Loyalty that was released today.  I’ve read mixed reviews on-line, some good and some bad, but so far I really like it.  It’s similar enough to Robbers and Cowards but different enough to show some new sides to the band.

I’ll try to do a full review with sample tracks sometime soon, but for now, go and grab it up if you want some awesome new music.  The best place (in my opinion) to get it is by signing up at e-music here, but if you insist on paying more for your downloads, here’s a link to Amazon.

I was thinking of doing a full review right now, but it didn’t seem right to offer late-breaking news at a reasonable time.  I’ve got a reputation to uphold after all.

Well, I finally did get the internet working, after I killed it a week or so ago, so I can post again.  🙂

Last week, I had another one of my usual “I’ve got way too many downloads to burn through and not enough music I want” episodes.  I had 250 free downloads from e-music, and, honestly, I was already overwhelmed with the music I had and wasn’t really excited about the idea of downloading another 20 new albums I’d have to grow to like.

But it drove me nuts just sitting on those downloads, so I went searching for new (or “new old”) stuff, and one of the artists I found was Annie Clark, who performs as the group St. Vincent.

I found her through her connections to Sufjan Stevens.  Apparently, she toured with his band beginning in 2006. I’m not sure what part she played, but according to Wikipedia she knows guitar, bass, and keyboard, so I would assume she did one of those.

Anyway, the music is fun, quirky, jazzy, poppy, and smooth, all at once.  She’s got an eclectic mixture of a sound that harkens back to classic jazz vocalists without remaining trapped there – the sound of thrift stores.

Read the rest of this entry »

Important Note

These MP3s are here for sampling purposes and to help spread the news about some sweet bands you may not otherwise know about. Support the artists by buying their MP3s and CDs and attending their shows. If you're a musician and don't want your MP3s on here, let us know and we'll take them down. In the interests of promotion and not robbery, all MP3s are taken down after a week or two, so if you wanna hear stuff, either come around often or pay for songs.

Send us an e-mail if you want stuff removed or you would like to be promoted here.

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