Song of the Day: The Watson Twins – How Am I To Be

The Watson Twins, Bumbershoot Music Lounge 9/4/07
photo by Allie Pasquier

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. This week we are featuring songs from bands that will be performing at Engine Studios during our broadcast in Chicago on July 16-18. Today’s featured selection, chosen by Afternoon Show host Cheryl Waters, is How Am I To Be by The Watson Twins from the 2008 album Fire Songs on Vanguard Records.

The Watson Twins – How Am I To Be (MP3)

Born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky, identical twins Chandra and Leigh Watson first treated the world to their otherworldly altos as Slydell before hopping aboard Jenny Lewis‘ 2006 dynamo, Rabbit Fur Coat. And that has made all the difference. The Watson Twins have since moved to LA and fittingly signed to the classic Vanguard Records. Their debut, Fire Songs, is full of slow burners spanning folk, country, blues and gospel. Somewhat oddly, the album aligns itself more with their current California surroundings than their long-time Kentucky tenure. While the tempo throughout the album maintains a slow, steady pulse, the emotion and atmospherics contained therein will linger with you long after the last track has run its course. The bar was set pretty high with Rabbit Fur Coat, even for these talented, ambitious women, but they’ve managed to prove heartily that we ain’t seen nothing yet. They’ll be performing live from Engine Studios 7/17 @ 1PM CST. Be sure to tune in for that, and catch them in Seattle at the Tractor Tavern 7/25. Meanwhile, here’s a little Q&A, as well as snippets of performances from the duo’s trip to SXSW this year:

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