by Sean
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


Meg Baird - "Do What You Gotta Do". Meg Baird, who plays with Espers, has released a solo album called Dear Companion. There's a tenderness I like just in that title. One day I hope we will all write such a letter - one that can begin Dear companion, and end with Yours sincerely. Or perhaps, if we're feeling feisty, with Love. Baird's record is a little bit of two things: British trad-folk, sung longingly, and agile, clear-eyed songs that strongly recall Joni Mitchell. And nothing on Dear Companion is Blue-er than "Do What You Gotta Do". Once they became familiar, the opening chords gained a power that stop me silent. I listen in a kind of trance. I hang on. Baird harmonising with herself, sadly singing, and overhead just endless white sky, a cool steady thing that will never push free from over the high-rises.

"Come on back and see me when you can": it's sung so sweet that for a moment you can almost imagine it happening.

[out Monday!]

Bowerbirds - "Olive Hearts". A party song wrought in bass-drum, acoustic guitar and accordion. A song of hygge, that Danish word which means good times, close friends, hot fires, cold beer. A song that begins in stillness, loneliness, and with friendship & nostalgia & persistence & browns, blues, golds, brilliant viridian greens, moves thumping to the moment when glasses clink, when hearts pound big, when "our plastic swords stab our olive hearts". "Cheers to the wives of the drunks. Cheers to the husbands that tag along for good luck. Cheers to the months it took to get here."

[order the very fine debut LP by Bowerbirds, whose Danger at Sea was the best EP of last year]


Silence is Not (Always) a Good Medicine is an exhibition of drawings by Erik Jerezano and gramo-friend Kit Malo, open now at Montreal's Sharon Ramsay Gallery and continuing through May 26th. I visited yesterday and it was really great: brave creatures that hide, fold, dream, long, change. I'm leaving town this evening but if you're around tonight (may 18), check out the the big Opening from 5 pm on.

an early happy birthday, robin.

Posted by Sean at May 18, 2007 12:05 PM

What is a clear-eyed song?

Posted by martin at May 18, 2007 6:06 PM

A song not composed or appropriated by a blind delta bluesman. Those songs are called catatracks.

Posted by steven at May 18, 2007 10:30 PM

this reminds me so much of the Rosebuds... even the name. I think they're tricking us.

Posted by patrick at May 21, 2007 9:40 PM

I was referring to the bowebirds song

Posted by patrick Lucy at May 21, 2007 9:43 PM

i was lucky enough to see the bowerbirds a couple weeks ago... fell in love with them through this blog, then moved to raleigh, and realized a few months later that they are a local band here. finally saw them playing with midtown dickens and kimya dawson. it was magical. so, thanks, sean, for posting "in our talons" way back when.

Posted by emily at May 22, 2007 8:00 PM

bowerbirds has something that cannot be put into words, which must be why they put it into music.

Posted by tim+ at May 23, 2007 3:27 PM

the roberta flack version of "do what you gotta do" is a devastator.

Posted by brandon at May 29, 2007 1:54 PM

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about said the gramophone
This is a daily sampler of really good songs. All tracks are posted out of love. Please go out and buy the records.

To hear a song in your browser, click the and it will begin playing. All songs are also available to download: just right-click the link and choose 'Save as...'

All songs are removed within a few weeks of posting.

Said the Gramophone launched in March 2003, and added songs in November of that year. It was one of the world's first mp3blogs.

If you would like to say hello, find out our mailing addresses or invite us to shows, please get in touch:
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Please don't send us emails with tons of huge attachments; if emailing a bunch of mp3s etc, send us a link to download them. We are not interested in streaming widgets like soundcloud: Said the Gramophone posts are always accompanied by MP3s.

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"And I shall watch the ferry-boats / and they'll get high on a bluer ocean / against tomorrow's sky / and I will never grow so old again."
about the authors
Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

Emma Healey writes poems and essays in Toronto. She joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. This is her website and email her here.

Jeff Miller is a Montreal-based writer and zinemaker. He is the author of Ghost Pine: All Stories True and a bunch of other stories. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Say hello on Twitter or email.

Mitz Takahashi is originally from Osaka, Japan who now lives and works as a furniture designer/maker in Montreal. English is not his first language so please forgive his glamour grammar mistakes. He is trying. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Reach him by email here.

Site design and header typography by Neale McDavitt-Van Fleet. The header graphic is randomized: this one is by Neale McDavitt-Van Fleet.
Dan Beirne wrote regularly for Said the Gramophone from August 2004 to December 2014. He is an actor and writer living in Toronto. Any claim he makes about his life on here is probably untrue. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.

Jordan Himelfarb wrote for Said the Gramophone from November 2004 to March 2012. He lives in Toronto. He is an opinion editor at the Toronto Star. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.
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our favourite blogs
(◊ means they write about music)

Back to the World
La Blogothèque
Weird Canada
Destination: Out
Endless Banquet
A Grammar (Nitsuh Abebe)
Ill Doctrine
A London Salmagundi
Words and Music
Petites planétes
Gorilla vs Bear
Silent Shout
Clouds of Evil
The Dolby Apposition
Awesome Tapes from Africa
Matana Roberts
Pitchfork Reviews Reviews
i like you [podcast]
Nicola Meighan
radiolab [podcast]
CKUT Music
plethoric pundrigrions
Wattled Smoky Honeyeater
The Clear-Minded Creative
Torture Garden
Passion of the Weiss
Juan and Only
Horses Think
White Hotel
Then Play Long (Marcello Carlin)
Uno Moralez
Coming Up For Air (Matt Forsythe)
my love for you is a stampede of horses
It's Nice That
Song, by Toad
In Focus
WTF [podcast]
The Rest is Noise (Alex Ross)
My Daguerreotype Boyfriend
The Hood Internet

things we like in Montreal
st-viateur bagel
café olimpico
Euro-Deli Batory
le pick up
kem coba
le couteau
au pied de cochon
mamie clafoutis
tourtière australienne
chez boris
alati caserta
vices & versa
+ paltoquet, cocoa locale, idée fixe, patati patata, the sparrow, pho tay ho, qin hua dumplings, caffé italia, hung phat banh mi, caffé san simeon, meu-meu, pho lien, romodos, patisserie guillaume, patisserie rhubarbe, kazu, lallouz, maison du nord, cuisine szechuan &c

drawn + quarterly
+ bottines &c

casa + sala + the hotel
blue skies turn black
montreal improv theatre
passovah productions
le cagibi
cinema du parc
pop pmontreal
yoga teacher Thea Metcalfe

Cult Montreal
The Believer
The Morning News
The Skinny