Steve Yutzy-Burkey of The Swimmers carries a torch for Will Oldham (aka Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy)

Steve Yutzy-Burkey and Will Oldham

Steve Yutzy-Burkey and Will Oldham

Steve Yutzy-Burkey’s recommendation: “Will Oldham has the ability to deliver some of the most revealing and heartbreaking lines, yet somehow he manages to never take himself too seriously. He has maintained a unique voice throughout a varied career (Palace, Palace Brothers, Palace Music, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billie, etc], always making music on his own terms. His voice is full of personality without the pretension of a constructed persona. I am fascinated by performers like him that can take so many risks (out-of-tune vocals, almost overly sincere lyrics, sloppy revolving cast of backing band members, weighty subject matter) and pull off so many things that would fall flat coming from anyone else. I doubt that people would easily hear a connection listening to my music, but Will Oldham’s music has been a source of inspiration and frustration for me throughout my years of attempting to write and perform.”

New to Will Oldham? Steve recommends you start here: “If unfamiliar, I recommend starting with Palace Music’s Lost Blues & Other Songs, as it was my first introduction and it worked on me. It’s a scattered and sparse affair–less polished than some later records–but even early on Oldham’s voice draws me in with its warbled and haunting clarity. I just listened to it again after a long break from hearing it, and it’s everything as brilliant as i remembered it.”

Steve Yutzy-BurkeyAbout the guest author, Steve Yutzy-Burkey: Steve is the lead singer/songwriter for The Swimmers, the Philadelphia band that the New York Times called “…a new favorite” and was placed as one of the “Eight To Watch in ’08″ by The Philadelphia Inquirer. Their last release, People Are Soft is a fantastic mix of cheery keyboards, sweet harmonies and smart lyrics that never try to be too clever. Check The Swimmers MySpace page for upcoming dates and sample their sounds below.

MP3: Shelter by The Swimmers from their album, People Are Soft