This got me thinking about Neko Case and how many of her songs I absolutely love, and then it got me thinking about how many New Pornographers songs I absolutely love. And then it reminded me of Case's cover of "Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out" that played over the end credits last season on Boardwalk Empire. It got me thinking about the first time I saw Neko Case, in 2000 at the Crystal Ballroom opening for The Jayhawks, and how I had no idea who she was but she was like an alt.country Jessica Rabbit up there, with that rich, silky voice and banter thick with innuendo. I was 20 and my mind was blown. I don't remember the songs, or The Jayhawks (one of my favorite bands), but I remembered Neko Case.
Then it reminds me of how Dan Gibson hates her because she left Tucson to live in Vermont. Cheery memories, all.
That's when I realized Neko Case is my favorite musician. These are her five of her 10 best songs. I'll list more tomorrow.
10. "Middle Cyclone" from Middle Cyclone
Case has built a prickly reputation through interviews and her stage persona, but this soft beauty from Case's last solo album appeals with what sound like deeply personal lyrics.
Case's vocals with The New Pornographers show a more upbeat side, primarily due to A.C. Newman's pop-heavy hooks.
A haunting track details her anxieties as a young woman in Seattle while the Green River Killer was on the loose in the '80s and '90s.
This song was featured in bank commercials.
Probably Case's biggest solo hit, "People Got a Lotta Nerve" was featured as an additional track on Rock Band 2. I know this because I was pretty decent at singing it. I mean, not decent like the actual vocal track, but I could at least somewhat stay on key. It's also got a cool video.