Well, here we are, living some fairly terrifying truths in 2017, but, at least, we have good, Southern music to live it all down with. This week, we have heavy pop-laden joy, some thoughtful, soulful folk music, dreamy r&b, a stunningly crazy song from Dolly Parton, and much more. As always, this mix is my ode to the real rebels of the South – Southern women and trans and non-binary Southerners, making our lives better when the world is hard bear.
Texas: Tele Novella, “Heavy Balloon”
Big, bright, baroque pop music from Austin – with a touch of fuck you. This is a song to quit your shitty job to or tell your terrible friend (or, you know, whoever) to take hike to – and still have a lot of fun.
Alabama: DEQN SUE, “Messy”
From the Huntsville-born pop singer’s latest album, Juggernaut, this is just one in a series of gorgeous, carefully-curated pop songs with a fair amount of drama and a few sharp edges. No video for the song (just listen in the playlist below), but here’s an interview her.
Virginia: Positive No, “Y.A.A.Y.Y.”
“Noisey, dreamy, pop songs.” This is music you can bask in. No video for this one either, so listen below!
Louisiana: 3d Na’Tee, “Maria”
New Orleans hip hop artist, 3d Na’Tee hails from that city’s 3rd ward, and “Maria” is from last year’s comeback album, The Regime. Here’s a superb breakdown of the enduring importance of this rapper who will “eat your favorite rapper’s lunch.”
Georgia: ABRA, “SICK GIRL”
A new synth-y, dance-y R & B track from DIY Atlanta artist, ABRA.
Georgia: Ruby the Rabbitfoot, “You’re Still the One”
File this under: “Things you didn’t know you desperately needed.” The St. Simon’s-native has decided to cover Shania Twain, and I am deeply thankful.
Texas: Pinky Swear, “I Thought You Never Wanted to Be Strangers”
Bittersweet beauty from McAllen, TX-based indie rock band, Pinky Swear.
Tennessee: Escondido, “Darkness”
You’ve likely heard Escondido if you watch good tv, like Girls and Nashville (RIP, Rayna). This is the latest single from the Nashville-based duo, Jessica Mara and Tyler James.
North Carolina: Kamara Thomas & the Ghost Gamblers, “My Kentucky”
Singer-songwriter Kamara Thomas was born in Chicago and has since lived and worked in Los Angeles and New York before landing in Durham. She was recently featured at Americana Fest, but this is an older track from her work with the Brooklyn-based Ghost Gamblers.
Tennessee: Dolly Parton, “I Believe in You”
Aaaannndddd, this new song is bonkers. Buuuuuutttt, here it is.