Sean’s Punchy Americana

9 songs, 31 min, 5 min reading time.

Sean has put together an excellent playlist inspired by his youth:

Spotify link

Deezer link

1) “Green River” – Creedence Clearwater Revival

From ages 1-6, I lived in Columbus, Mississippi. Some of my first memories are watching an Armadillo family rolling around our back yard. “Green River” brings me right back to these times!

Album: “Green River (40th Anniversary Edition)” (1969)
Label: Concord Music Group

2) “Rich Woman” – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss

I’ve played drums/percussion for 11 years and “Rich Woman” has one of my favourite drum recordings. Drumming isn’t about matching up perfectly with a beats-per-minute click track, it’s about listening to your bandmates and blending your sound with them. The drummer in “Rich Woman” plays notes almost ahead of the beat in this recording, allowing the band’s sound to punch through and it’s subtle but amazing.

Album: “Raising Sand” (2007)
Label: Rounder Records

3) “Guns and Dogs” – Portugal. The Man

In November 2009, a friend and I were driving through the North Georgia Mountains and he put on the CD “The Satanic Satanist” by Portugal. The Man – my first introduction to the band. We didn’t talk during the whole album and I was completely blown away by it. They instantly became, and still remain, my favourite band.

Album: “The Satanic Satanist” (2009)
Label: Approaching AIRballoons

4) “Little Green Bag” – George Baker Selection

The Opening theme from the movie “Reservoir Dogs” – peak Americana.

Album: “Reservoir Dogs (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)” (2009)
Label: Geffen Records

5) “Rusty Cage” – Johnny Cash

Originally a song by Soundgarden but amazingly covered here by Johnny Cash. In later life, Johnny Cash made some brilliant cover albums.

Album: “American II: Unchained” (1996)
Label: American Recordings

6) “Mary Jane’s Last Dance” – Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

My family and I at one point lived in Western Pennsylvania and I remember this song being on the car radio a lot while driving through winding forest roads near a place called Evans City – I went to Evans City Elementary School. Fun fact I only found out just now while writing this article and checking out the Wikipedia for Evans City: the Evans City Cemetery became popularly known as the place where the movie “Night of the Living Dead” was filmed in 1968 by George Romero.

Album: “Greatest Hits” (2008)
Label: UMG Recordings

7) “Will There Be Enough Water?” – The Dead Weather

The Dead Weather is my favourite project by Jack White. They wrote and recorded this album in a few days and all live in studio. They’re one of the few bands that play better live than on recording:

Album: “Horehound” (2009)
Label: Third Man Records

8) “Mornings” – Portugal. The Man

John Gourley (lead singer and guitarist) grew up in Alaska and used to have to drive 3 hours to get to the nearest town to buy groceries. He wrote this album to reflect his times growing up in rural Alaska – there was dog mushing involved.

Album: “The Satanic Satanist” (2009)
Label: Approaching AIRballoons