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 selection, featured on the Morning Show with John Richards, is “Sleep” by Allen Stone from his self-titled album available from Sticky Stones Records.
Seattle musicians have caused quite a stir this year on the national market. The Head and the Heart were seemingly plucked from the garden and put right on the plate alongside such main dishes as Death Cab for Cutie and Fleet Foxes. Shabazz Palaces clued everyone in on our thriving hip hop scene, and now it’s Allen Stone’s turn to grace the hearts and ears of those outside the Northwest.
Rising out of near oblivion, this small town-preacher’sson became our city’s collective crush earlier this fall with the release of his latest album and a couple of big performances at the City Arts Festival. Things only exploded for Stone, who charted on both iTunes and Billboard (reaching #2 on the Billboard Soul Chart) and caught the attention of everyone from the NY Times, MTV, to CNN without any support from a publicist or a label. What draws everyone in is Stone’s earnest and confessional lyrics, his emotion-laden vocals, and catchy pop hooks. His music draws on everything from R&B, jazz, soul, and funk and is reminiscent of Stevie Wonder with the pop sensibilities of Michael Jackson. Today’s featured song, “Sleep,” is fun, extremely infectious, and you’ll catch yourself throwing in a few “yeahs” and hand claps before you know it.
Stone is currently on tour (you can catch him tonight in LA). Your next opportunity to see him in the area is an intimate show at the Treehouse Café on Bainbridge on 12/16 or with the masses at The Neptune on 1/14. More dates and info can be found on his website.
In the meantime, here he is performing his breakout hit “Unaware” live in the KEXP studios last week: