Monday, March 17, 2008

27 Jennifers

Song: 27 Jennifers
Artist: Mike Doughty
Album: Golden Delicious

I was a HUGE Soul Coughing fan back in High School and College and managed to see them once on their “El Oso” tour back in school. I flipped for their debut “Ruby Vroom,” as well as their subsequent releases “Irrisistible Bliss” and “El Oso.” “Ruby Vroom,” (named after Suzanne Vega’s daughter,) was always my favorite… and when I did see them on the tour for their third record I was (pleasantly) surprised that they must know it was their best, as they played it almost in its entirety. The band split after the third album and while I knew lead singer and chief songwriter Mike Doughty (known as M. Doughty during the Soul Coughing days) had continued as a solo artist… I hadn’t really followed him.

What I didn’t know is that post Soul Coughing Doughty struggled with drug addiction and self-promoted himself by touring in his car around the country and selling burned copies of his record label rejected first solo album “Skittish.” I heard that record and the EP “Rockity Roll” and frankly wasn’t that impressed, save for a cool cover of Mary J. Blige’s “Real Love.” So I stopped following the man.

Well this year Doughty is releasing his fourth solo album “Golden Delicious” which has been produced by Semisonic’s Dan Wilson. I listened out of interest, wondering where he was at and I have been pleasantly surprised. The production is great, and the sound is only what I could call as ‘Soul Coughing grown up.” It’s less attention grabbing than his older material, less trying to by kooky… and more relaxed. But don’t get me wrong… it works. And seems the right progression for a man that has been through so much.

There is a lot to recommend on “Golden Delicious” but the song that first immediately grabbed me was “27 Jennifers,” which seems to be a favorite of Doughty’s as well… it’s the third time he’s released it. The record is good start to finish though, and would highly recommend it to any aging Soul Coughing fan that wants a hit of nostalgia with a mix of forward thinking maturity.

I need to go back and listen to his third record “Haughty Melodic” as it apparently re-generated his career, giving him bigger hits than he did with Soul Coughing. His song “Looking at the World from the Bottom of a Well” was a Grey’s Anatomy hit, as well as “I Hear the Bells” on Veronica Mars. I am happy to report that Doughty has turned things around and doing well musically.


27 Jennifers

Looking at the World From the Bottom of a Well

An old Soul Coughing favorite “Circles”

1 comment:

Lizzy said...

I love soul coughing...well i love "Circles". I have been hearing this song on the radio (27 Jennifers) and I THOUGHT his voice sounded familiar. Thanks for the post - I love the song and i love his voice!