06-24-19 | Songs for Listening | Oliver Hill
Songwriter and producer Oliver Hill, of Pavo Pavo and Dustrider, picked tunes for Monday, June 24 at Songs for Listening. In addition to his work as a songwriter / producer, Oliver is a multi-instrumentalist, film composer, and string arranger based in Los Angeles. He has written arrangements for artists such as Dirty Projectors, Helado Negro, Kevin Morby, Wet, and Vagabon, along with touring regularly as a violist, pianist, and guitarist. He was the primary songwriter of Pavo Pavo, whose 2019 record 'Mystery Hour' was described as “a quietly poetic record that explores the stuff of life, love, and loss with a clear head” (Pitchfork). His self-titled debut solo record, ‘Dustrider’, will be released in 2020.
Here's Oliver's picks with annotations:
'Om Supreme' by Alice Coltrane
"i’ve been thinking about music more recently in terms of how it fills space, what tone it sets in any space and which spaces it feels most comfortable in. growing up mostly with 18th and 19th century classical music which is so much about telling linear stories, it takes some unlearning to allow a piece of music to just exist in a mood — but this one is about a deep a mood as there is."
'High on a Rocky Ledge' by Moondog
”i love the grandiosity of the storytelling in this one, it reads almost like something from 'canterbury tales'. and his voices carries such a presence — i heard this for the first time a few weeks ago at the party and i made everyone quiet down and listen again."
'Feather by Feather' by Smog
"one of my all-time favorite album-opening lyrics: “you spend half of the morning just trying wake up, half the evening just trying to calm down.” the looseness of the band and vocal harmonies give this track a special magic, like he brought the song into the rehearsal room and rolled the tape straight away, looking at his lyric sheet. i may have listened to this record more than any other record my junior year of high school."
'Ponta de Areia' by Wayne Shorter
"this one’s another newish discovery for me, thanks to spotify free associating after i finished miles davis' 'on the corner' and let it run. the opening melody feels ancient in a way that makes me really feel something, like a shanty or a lutheran hymn, a village melody."
'Hanky Panky Nohow' by John Cale
"i love this john cale record for its earnestness & unabashed britishness, which in the context of his extremely american career with the velvets and beyond feels like a heartfelt return to his roots. and this one is a highlight, the single note verse melody, pre-chorus that rises and adds motion, and chorus up at the top of his register — it’s good songwriting.'
'Om Supreme' by Alice Coltrane from 'Eternity'
'High on a Rocky Ledge' by Moondog from 'H'art Songs'
'Feather by Feather' by Smog from 'Supper'
'Ponta de Areia' by Wayne Shorter from 'Native Dancer'
'Hanky Panky Nohow' by John Cale from 'Paris 1919'