Song Roundup 4: The Thanksgiving Version

And as the year continues, I continue to notice how I end up ignoring this poor blog. So, here is another attempt at moving things along.

Thanksgiving is perhaps my favorite holiday of the year. It always brings together family in a way that can’t be matched by Christmas. While the spirit of giving carries through Christmastime, we often get caught up in the holiday rush, concerning ourselves with consumerism and not general goodwill. Greed is still a factor in today’s celebration, but decidedly less so; families gather together and share a singular meal instead of trading gifts. This concept of choice in sharing is very powerful and carries out the very spirit of the day. We should all be very thankful for what we have around us and those who we love. In this spirit, I present two songs that I particularly think fit the Thanksgiving mood.

“Quiet Houses” by Fleet Foxes

Fleet Foxes are very unique in that they do not seem to fit any moment in time. Nearly every song off their spectacular self-titled album sounds simultaneously modern and historical, offering a very contemporary take on Americana. This same sort of power translates into seasonal considerations. While the album was released in the warmth of June, each song feels perfectly at home as I drive through the snowy realm of Central New York. It is this strange disconnect that has struck me in listening to Fleet Foxes this Thanksgiving. “Quiet Houses” feels so very much alive in the context of togetherness. Stunning vocal harmonies and thoughtful musical elements seem to welcome a return to a former life. As I sit at home, reflecting on my life, I see that this song is very appropriate for the family atmosphere of Thanksgiving.

“All Kinds of Time” by Fountains of Wayne

The Thanksgiving tradition of NFL games never really appealed to me in the past. This year, having joined a fantasy football team, I paid attention, watching two of my players work their magic. And then, through pure coincidence, I ran across this track while listening to more pop-oriented tunes. The narrative of a slow-motion quarterback seeing his eventual receiver in a “golden ray of light” fits with the football theme, but it is the sonic quality of the song that brings it into the Thanksgiving forefront. This song is light, optimistic and very welcoming. By offering such a welcoming feeling, the Thanksgiving travel (the journey home) is brought to my mind.

Ultimately, Thanksgiving always brings to mind feelings of comfort, love, and togetherness. Through welcoming sonic textures and comforting music, Fleet Foxes and Fountains of Wayne manage to enter my mind as excellent Thanksgiving listening. Soon enough, the Christmas music will be everywhere. Enjoy these fresh songs of community now before your ears are taken hostage by the “holly, jolly” tunes.

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