I’d published these posts without Soundtracks while I was reading the calendars. But I decided to add Tiny Desk Concerts to them when I realized that I’d love to post about all of the remaining 100 or shows and this was a good way to knock out 25 of them.
Kat Edmonson is a singer who is often associated with jazz (the word chanteuse is thrown around a lot), although for this Tiny Desk Concert it’s just her singing and Steve Elliot on acoustic guitar.
She has beautiful voice and at times she can make it sound unexpectedly like Billie Holiday (which certainly explains the jazz angle).
But she doesn’t do that voice on the first song “Hopelessly Blue.” This makes me think more of Kristen Chenoweth (or am I thinking that because they are both so petite?). Comparisons aside, her voice is clear and pure and there’s no tricks to it.
“I Don’t Know” opens with a lovely “hoooo hoooo” and a slightly faster tempo. And her voice sounds a bit more like 70s folksingers (keep in mind that she was only 29 at the time of this recording).
Her speaking voice is high-pitched and sweet as you might imagine, although she sounds quite different as she introduces “Lucky.” “Lucky” showcases her more Holiday-ish style of singing—as if her accent is from somewhere very other than Texas. (To hear her even more pronounced version of this singing voice, check out this song).
[READ: December 6, 2016] “Cure”
Near the end of November, I found out about The Short Story Advent Calendar. Which is what exactly? Well…
The Short Story Advent Calendar returns, not a moment too soon, to spice up your holidays with another collection of 24 stories that readers open one by one on the mornings leading up to Christmas. This year’s stories once again come from some of your favourite writers across the continent—plus a couple of new crushes you haven’t met yet. Most of the stories have never appeared in a book before. Some have never been published, period.
I already had plans for what to post about in December, but since this arrived (a few days late for advent, but that was my fault for ordering so late) I’ve decided to post about every story on each day.
This story is about the family of a Pastor living in an area of the country that is dominated by Finnish Laplanders. The setting is just after the war.
The community has had much loss. The Pastor’s wife had died. The Tolvi children were very unwell and even the Pastor’s eldest son Arden seems to moving beyond the family.
The Pastor’s sons Lowell and Jonas head down to the canoe by the river and go for a paddle. They hope to go to the decommissioned fort–a wonderful place to explore for young boys.
While they are paddling, the happen upon a naked lady (!). She is alluring, and invites them to look into the water to see paradise. But they resists and head home–promising not to tell anyone about what they saw.
But they go back. Jonas even brought a sweater for the woman who must have been cold. She invites them again to look into the water and see the next place where it was always lovely. Lowell peers into the water and sees nothing. But Jonas puts his head in and says “I saw it!” And then he has dived into the water.
Arden seems to know about this woman–she is a mythological creature who is far too real.
The end of the story shows the near future of the family–particularly how Lowell moved on.
The story is dark for sure, but the last line is completely energizing, making you wonder what is coming next.