OutRadio Best of the Year
Mika - Celebrate
This is JD Doyle and welcome to OutRadio. And that was Mika with the title track from his latest CD "The Origin of Love." And "Celebrate" seemed a good way to start off our making it past the Mayan end of the world predictions. This is a special edition of OutRadio. It's not only my third anniversary doing the show, but as it is January, it's my Best of the Year Show. During the year I get to hear a lot of music by GLBT artists, so it is indeed difficult to narrow things down to the albums that will fit into an hour show. And, yes, this is a very, Very subjective Best of the Year list. And like last year I've broken it down into two parts, the first part for full albums and the second for singles, or songs that are part of an EP.
But back to the Best Albums of 2012, in my opinion, and again, UK artist Mika started us off, and I need to keep my talking down to fit in as many as I can, and that turned out to be 16 albums and, on Part 2, 17 songs. So I won't be giving a lot of bio info on the artists, but for many of these folks you can find that on my site, in addition to links to their websites. The songs on this segment are in no particular order, and next is an artist I've been following for many years, Kiya Heartwood. She's been half of the duo Wishing Chair for all that time, but this year she put out a solo CD, called "Bold Swimmer," and from it is the outspoken "Change (Is Gonna Come)."
Heartwood - Change (Is Gonna Come)
In the middle was "Gonna Be Alright" from an album by Levi Kreis, called "Live @ Joe's Pub." Levi, by the way won a Tony Award for his role playing Jerry Lee Lewis in the Broadway show "Million Dollar Quartet." And the last artist was Rick Berlin. He has been making music since the 1970's, in his various bands, like Orchestra Luna and Berlin Airlift, and on a slew of solo releases. I have about a dozen of those and think his latest, called "Always on Insane" is his most commercial in years. From it I picked the song "Kitchy."
Coming up, a more mellow song, by Matt Alber. The song "The River" is from his latest CD "Constant Crow."
Matt Alber - The River
And here's Austin artist Andy Units and the song "Sea of Stars," and I think his debut album "Night Light" is just beautiful. It's one of those where you listen to the whole thing and then tell yourself, wow, that was gorgeous, and then you play it again.
Units - Sea of Stars
Following Andy Units was another debut artist, Matt Gold. His album has the interesting title "Drown Before You Swim," and I picked the song "Oh, Joe."
Next is an artist I just discovered this year, and went, duh, why didn't I know about her before, as she's been releasing albums for years, and on the new one Bonnie Raitt sings backup on a few tracks. Anyway, she's Maia Sharp and I loved her album "Change the Ending" immediately and knew it would end up on this show. I chose the song "Me After You."
Sharp - Me After You
I seem to love every album Canadian Kevin Wong releases, as his last one also made my Best of the Year show. This time the CD is "Songs from the Weekend," and you heard the track "Books & Drinks." And in the middle of that set was an old favorite of mine, San Francisco jazz artist Veronica Klaus. On her CD "Something Cool" she took the old Marvelettes song "The Hunter Gets Captured by the Game" and, jazzed it up.
This next artist, after the Imperial Court gave him a title, added it to his name, and now he's Sir Ari Gold. On his latest album "Between the Spirit and the Flesh" he got a little help from NY performers Peppermint and Mila Jam on the track "If I Steal Your Boyfriend."
Ari Gold - If I Steal Your Boyfriend
I just love Ezra Azelrod's CD "American Motel," and how out his lyrics are, as was evidenced by the title track. I'm bringing the beat way down for Jay Brannan's album "Rob Me Blind." It's one of those CDs where there are so many good songs it's hard to pick, but I settled on "Beautifully." I just love his voice.
Brannan - Beautifully
Another artist new to me this year is Michael V. Doane. His new album is called "Little Kid" and you got to hear "Follow Me, Follow You."
For this next artist, and I know this is hard to convey as you'll only hear one song, but it's been quite a while since I was so impressed so immediately by an album. She's Krystle Warren and her latest release is called "Love Songs - A Time You May Embrace." From it I chose one that has a nod to those old Phil Spector productions, and it's called "Forever Is a Long Time."
Krystle Warren - Forever Is a Long Time
This is JD Doyle getting to the end of my Best of the Year show for the albums of 2012, but remember on my website you can also listen to Part 2, where I do the same thing for singles. I picked a powerful song to close the segment. Once it starts it doesn't let go. Beth Ditto as part of the band Gossip takes lead. From the album "A Joyful Noise" is the song "Move in the Right Direction."
Gossip - Move in the Right Direction
Gavin Creel - Noise
That song is called "Noise," and is billed as an anthem for equality. It's by Broadway star Gavin Creel. And this is JD Doyle welcoming you to Part 2 of my OutRadio show for January. It's my oh-so-subjective Best of the Year show and this time I'm honoring singles and songs from EPs. And I'm trying to keep down my talking so will go quickly to the next song. It's by Adrienne Gonzalez, but she just released an EP just going by her initials, AG. I think her new EP is amazing. Her record company recently got the rights to very early material by the Beatles, pre-Capitol Records stuff, so she did six songs on an EP, just called "The Beatles." I think it's wonderful, and I love the female slant she adds to the lyrics. I've played all the tracks during the year on my show, and this time I picked "I Saw Her Standing There."
- I Saw Her Standing There
As AG just goes by her initials, I could not resist playing after her the other artist on this segment who does the same thing. This artist goes by LP and the song you heard was "Into the Wild," which you've probably also heard on the Citibank TV commercials. The EP is called "Live at EastWest Studio." By the way, she's been quite successful as a writer, with a partial list of folks recording her work including Christina Aguilera, the Backstreet Boys, Joe Walsh, Leona Lewis, and Rihanna. I followed LP with, I think, one of our most talented singers, Jen Foster. And her track was called "You Stayed."
Broadway and TV star, and gorgeous hunk, Cheyenne Jackson had two excellent singles this year. In May he released one called "Drive" and in June, the other, called "Before You." Tough choice, but I decided to go with "Drive."
Cheyenne Jackson - Drive
I'm going to slip in a couple of country songs, and I'm starting with Richard Hefner and the very out of the closet track "Girls & Boys."
Hefner - Girls & Boys
That was Chris Riffle with the second Beatles cover of the show. From his EP "Another Dream" I love his version of "And I Love Him." And before Chris was Josiah Carr, and I have heard three new songs by him and wish I could have picked all three. But I ended up with the track "Alone with You." I'm much looking forward to his new album.
Fisher - 30k
In that set, Jana Fisher was first, giving us "30k" from her 3-song EP "Ideals & Deals." And then a trio called "The Pushovers" provided a fun song called "Boy or Girl." The members of that band are all recording artists individually, and I've played them all. They are Mara Levi, Nancy Eddy and Liz DeRoche.
And here are two more female acts, beginning with one I've grown to love over the last year, Kat Devlin. And one reason is a song from her EP "REM Cycle" called "Dear Emmi." I also recommend you check out the video for it.
Devlin - Dear Emmi
From Canada the duo Sugarbeach gave us the song "Led Me To You." They are also the gals who operate the wonderful website RightOutTV, to showcase videos by GLBT artists, and I'm a big fan.
This next song to me is the ballad of the year, and I think it's gorgeous. It's from the new holiday movie "Scrooge & Marley," which is kind of a gay version of "The Christmas Carol." The film's closing song is sung by Jason Gould, who two or three of you may not know is the son of Barbra Streisand and Elliot Gould, and my, my, Jason can sing. The song is called "Amazing."
Jason Gould - Amazing (2012)
Again, that was "Amazing" by Jason Gould. Here comes two more uptempo songs. First is the very out "Who's That Boy" by Swedish singer Jonas Oakland.
Oakland - Who's That Boy
That song was "The Rain from London," and so is the artist, though he's been in the U.S. for a number of years now. He's Darren Ockert, and his four-song EP, called "The Rain from London," is excellent.
This is JD Doyle finishing up Part 2 of my Best of the Year show for 2012, this time honoring the singles. And this next one is last because, well, it would be pretty hard to follow. It's by UK singer Matt Fishel and he's already released a number of amazing singles in just a few years, but not yet an album. He's promised me I get the first interview when he does. Taking us out, in more ways than one, is Matt Fishel and the song "Behind Closed Doors."
Fishel - Behind Closed Doors