We all know Billy Bragg can write a good protest song, but his ballads are so lovely and underrated. I can only think of Bob Dylan who can do so much with so little. “I put on my raincoat to make it rain / And sure enough the skies opened up again.”
This month has a special edition of 15 Songs via Spotify. All of August I was on a folk kick that I’m still on. This playlist is a mix of all the great folk songs, both old and new, that I’ve been playing all month (Yes, there will be Bob Dylan).
I’m going to cheat a little bit for this playlist. Some of the songs here are not from American musicians and not all the songs are what I consider to be Americana music. However, what all these songs have in common is that they are all great songs to go driving to when surrounded by nature. If it’s rainy, sunny, cloudy, or any other type of weather, I find that these songs have a kind of clarity in them that make you see your surroundings more and the music fits with the scenery.
Wilco – “Either Way”
Bob Dylan – “Workingman’s Blues #2”
The Band – “The Weight”
Counting Crows – “Friend of the Devil”
The Head and the Heart – “Down in the Valley”
Ryan Adams – “Oh My Sweet Carolina”
Ryan Adams – “Dear John (Follow The Lights EP version)