Song of the Day: Mason Jennings – The Field

photo by Jill Evans

photo by Jill Evans

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. Each and every Friday we offer songs by local artists. Today’s featured selection, chosen by Afternoon Show host Kevin Cole, is “Give Blood” by Mason Jenningsfrom the 2009 album Blood of Man on Brushfire Records.

Mason Jennings – The Field (MP3)

Mason Jennings is no stranger to doing things himself. He went his own way when he dropped out of school to pursue a career as a musician, he recorded his first album by himself at age 22, and even now he continues this tradition on his new album, Blood of Man, on which he plays all of the instruments on the record. The album, which hit stores last month, is out on Brushfire Records and boasts a Rivers Cuomo inspired 42 minutes consisting of 10 tracks.

On the single “The Field” you can even imagine Jennings himself performing the entire song alone; guitar on his lap and a tamborine slung around his boot. Jennings’ work is often corralled with Jack Johnson and similar artists but what truly sets him apart is his ability to do so much with so few elements and, unlike many artists who try to achieve a similar effect, does so without delivering an empty vessel of a song.

Entirely simple and without pomp, “The Field” is an honest, longing ballad concerned with human connection and knowing oneself in a pivotal moment. Jennings sings “If I was the president, if I was that brave / I would take a shovel then dig each child their graves” and while it seems an atrocious lyric, it’s really what this song is all about: knowledge of what needs to be done and doing it. The song concludes with the repeating answer of “It’s right here.” to the question “Tell me where’s your heart?” and the simplicity of the electric guitar and minimal percussion helps the poignancy of that exchange to shine through.

Jennings is currently touring the East Coast with dates in NYC, Pittsburgh, and Boston. Through October, he continues across the midwest where he will end his tour on November 22nd in his hometown of Minneapolis. Check his website and MySpace page for dates. If you’re on the West Coast (sorry, you just missed him) and are itching for some Mason Jennings live material, you should head to for free-to-download live recordings of his shows, and for a short time you can still listen to his September 25th (3PM) performance live on KEXP on our 14-day Streaming Archive. For now, here’s Mason Jennings’ new video for another song on the new album, “Ain’t No Friend of Mine”:

This entry was posted in KEXP, Song of the Day Podcast and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

2 Comments

  1. Shawn Lastinger
    Posted October 6, 2009 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    Hey, Thanks for getting Mason Jennings music out there. He is Awesome.
    Afternoon Show host Kevin Cole, is Awesome too.

  2. Andrew
    Posted April 19, 2010 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

    Kevin Cole is a god, and was when he was in Minneapolis. The best there is.

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

*
*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Donate Now!
where the music matters

The KEXP Blog

  • Listen Live:

    High Quality AAC+
    Excellent for PC, Mac, iPhones/iPads, Android Devices, tables, iTunes, Winamp, and VLC. High quality audio, low bandwidth

    MP3 Stream
    Best for computers running OSX or Windows with iTunes or the open source VideoLAN Player installed

  • Breaking New Ground Together!

    Help Build Our New Home!
  • KEXP AND THE UW

    The University of Washington Logo KEXP is a service of the
    University of Washington
  • iTunes and KEXP

    iTunes Logo
    You can now find KEXP under "Eclectic" in iTunes after the demise of the "Public" category, to better represent the diversity of our daytime variety shows and numerous specialty programs.
Sponsored By
Become a KEXP Sponsor!
  • KEXP Post Categories