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h2o mp3: Rain Dance – The Very Best (with M.I.A.)

Some great drought-busting tribal-pop!

“The Very Best” is East African (Malawi) singer Esau Mwamwaya and producer duo Radioclit (Johan Hugo and DJ Tron/DJ Shark Attack). The track Rain Dance, featuring hit-making heavyweight M.I.A., is from their brand-new album The Heart of Africa.

A great collaboration, too, since M.I.A. (from Sri Lanka) is noted for tribal-ethnic beats and dance-driving repetition.

Much of Mwamwaya’s vocals in Rain Dance are in Chichewa, the language of Malawi. Love that rain-stick intro!

From The Very Best’s MySpace page,

Esau Mwamwaya was born in Mzuzu in Malawi, East Africa. He grew up in the capital, Lilongwe, where he played drums in various bands such as Masaka Band. He was a good friend of the legendary Evison Matafale and they played together for several years before he was killed in Malawi police custody in 2003.

In 1999 Esau Mwamwaya moved to London, England ran a second-hand furniture shop in Clapton, East London until setpember 2008 when he returned to Malawi.

Esau’s shop was on the same street as Radioclit’s old studio, and after the Radioclit boy’s bought a bike from Esau they invited him to one of their house warming parties They made friends and started working on music together. Three years later and the project has gotten it’s name The Very Best.

Play the track
[audio:http://thirstyinsuburbia.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/very-best-rain-dance-w_-mia.mp3]

Download Rain Dance – The Very Best feat. M.I.A. (6MB)
Like it? Support the people who make music! Buy the album Warm Heart of Africa at iTunes or Amazon.com.

h2o mp3: How Can I Be So Thirsty – John Anderson

Drinkin’ too much and a-payin’ the price are essential elements in old-school classic country music. This track, and John Anderson, are as classic as it gets. (We love the not-original-but-awesome lyric technique “Jose, Jack and Jim my best drinkin’ friends” (who are, of course, Cuervo, Daniels and Beam, respectively).

Anderson’s long music career spans more than 30 years with 40+ singles and 5 number-one songs on the Billboard country music charts. How Can I Be So Thirsty is from his latest, the June 2009 album Bigger Hands.

Lyrics:

Last night I went to town, hit every bar around
A hundred bottles of beer on the wall
Lord I thought that I could drink ’em all
Jose, Jack and Jim my best drinkin’ friends
They poured ’em up and I shot ’em down
Lord I thought I was goin’ to drown

How can I be so thirsty this mornin’ after all I drank last night?
I was a-sippin’ and a-tippin’, a-chuggin’ and a-luggin’
Huggin’ every pretty girl in sight
I woke up with the cotton mouth wrapped around my throat so tight
How can I be this thirsty this mornin’ after all I drank last night?

Play the track

[audio:http://thirstyinsuburbia.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/01_-_how_can_i_be_so_thirsty.mp3]

Download How Can I Be So Thirsty – John Anderson
64 kbps low-fi mp3 for sampling.
Like it? Support the people who make music. Buy this track at iTunes or Amazon.com.

h2o mp3: Something in the Water – The Jealous Girlfriends

Isn’t it easy to blame everything from bad behavior to multiple pregnancies on the water? “Something in the water” is a phrase that tracks way back to the days when frequent epidemics were, in fact, usually caused by “something” in the water.

This 2007 new wave-ish track by the Brooklyn, New York band The Jealous Girlfriends is from their self-titled second album.

Lyrics:
I think there’s something in the water
Or then again
It could be something in the air
But there’s none to be found
In the dirt on the ground
And the choices I’ve made
are ad hoc anyway

Hey, I think it must be the water

Noises through the wall of TV and sex
Repeat your opinion
until it all makes sense
And it’s all you can do
to keep your head above it
It’s the only truth
there’s no way around it

Play the track

[audio:http://thirstyinsuburbia.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/08-something-in-the-water.mp3]

Download Something in the Water – The Jealous Girlfriends
1.3 MB 64 kbps low-fi mp3 for sampling.
Like it? Support the people who make music. Buy this track at iTunes or amazon.com

h2o mp3: I Want the Waiter (With the Water) – Ozzie Nelson and his Orchestra

When this playful swing number was recorded in 1939, war was raging in Europe, the United States officially declared its neutrality and the U.S. non-intervention movement was strong. We all know how that eventually played out. (I’ll ignore the fact that today is September 11th, another historic date in the history of American denial.)

Americans had the Great Depression behind them and the misery of war yet to come. They were swinging and cutting the rug, and consummate entertainer and bandleader Ozzie Nelson was packing the dance floor.

This is a faster, funnier version of I Want the Waiter (With the Water) than the better-known recording by Ella Fitzgerald.

Lyrics (which begin at 0:45)

I want the waiter, with the water
I want the waiter with the water for my daughter
I want the waiter with the water for my daughter
cause my daughter has an order for some water on the tray

He’s got a menu, that’ll send you
He’s got a menu that’ll send you and befriend you
He’s got a menu that’ll send you and befriend you
maybe lend you if you help me find the waiter with the tray

While my daughter was having lunch one day
She caught the waiter’s eye
He took one look at her, and ran away
Now she’s gonna die of thirst unless I find that guy

Play and download the track

I Want the Waiter (With the Water) – Ozzie Nelson and his Orchestra

(I usually urge you to support musicians via a purchase link, but I can’t find anywhere for you to buy this rare track!)

h2o mp3: Its All About the Water – Jimmy Buffett

Did you know that Jimmy Buffett tried his hand at musical theater? No? That’s because the effort made little more than a ripple! The 1998 stage play Don’t Stop the Carnival, based on Herman Wouk’s 1965 novel of the same name, played only briefly in Miami but hooray! The studio album of 20 original compositions by Buffett lives on.

It’s All About the Water and Champagne Si, Agua No are both from this album. The play’s plot involves a New Yorker with dreams of escaping his high-pressure life; he abandons everything to buy an old hotel on a tiny, primitive, lush Caribbean island.

I can’t find many details past that, but judging by the songs, water is a scarce and revered resource on the island and a broken water pump plays a role in the plot line. Both tracks are classic Buffett tropical goodness.

Lyrics – It’s All About the Water

It’s all about da water, don’t you know
Kinja needs da water, da h2o
It’s all about da water, it ain’t no lie
Widout de water we shrivel up and die

De main cistern go down to zero
De new bossman, he be a hero
Solve de problem, so give a cheer-o
He turn on de water!

H2 h2 0 h2 h2 0

Play the track – It’s All About the Water

[audio:http://thirstyinsuburbia.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/10-its-all-about-the-water.mp3]

Lyrics – Champagne Si, Agua No

Folks, Gull Reef regrets the water shortage.
Wild night out there!
Water in the sea, water from the sky, no water in the Club,
but while the pump gets repaired, let’s live!
If the water can’t flow, the wine can!
Champagne party in the lobby!

Champagne si, agua no
Let it rain, let it blow
To hell with the H2O
Champagne si, agua no

The Gull Reef Club’s not too ship shape
Time for a party time for a break
Tonight all our troubles will soon disappear
Cause champagne is cheaper than water down here

Play the track – Champagne Si, Agua No

[audio:http://thirstyinsuburbia.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/11-champagne-si-agua-no.mp3]

Download It’s All About the Water
Download Champagne Si, Agua No
Low-fi 64 kbps mp3 files for sampling.

Like it? Support the people who make music. Buy these tracks at iTunes or Amazon.com.

h2o mp3: Clear as Water – Una Mas Trio

If you are hosting any sort of gathering this weekend, Clear as Water is guaranteed to help you get the party started. The German group Una Mas Trio describes their music as “latin-boogaloo-driven”  both for listening and for the dance floor and is an intoxicating fusion of latin-world beats, jazz and soul.

The Mo’Horizons Restyle version of Clear as Water is from the March 2009 12″ single.

Lyrics:
Free as a bird
Free as the wind
Clear like water
that flows from the mountain

Play the track

[audio:http://thirstyinsuburbia.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/una-mas-trio-clear-as-water-mohorizons-restyle.mp3]

Download Clear as Water (Mo’Horizons Restyle)
Low-fi 64 kbps for sampling

Like it? Support the people who make music. Buy this track at iTunes or Amazon.com.
Una Mas Trio on MySpace

h2o mp3: Water – Rose Royce

This vintage funk track is over 30 years old and still awesome. (Check out that spectacular funk guitar around 1:50!) The soundtrack from the movie Car Wash, released in 1976, transformed the young Los Angeles band Rose Royce from unknown to overnight success with four top-10 singles.

This track is not one of the hits, but a lesser known, mostly-instrumental B-side from the 7″ Car Wash single.

Lyrics:
Water soothing to your soul in the midst of a hot summer day,
Yea, Water soothing to your soul in the midst of a hot summer day

Play the track

[audio:http://thirstyinsuburbia.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/roseroyce-water.mp3]

Download the mp3 Water -Rose Royce

Like it? Support the people who make music. This track available only with the full album, available at iTunes or Amazon.com.

h2o mp3: Water – Brad Paisley

Here’s the perfect track for the heat apex of summer from country giant Brad Paisley. It makes me wish I could “Drive until the map turns blue” right now! From 2009’s American Saturday Night, the honky-tonky sing-along song Water conjures up every good memory a good ol’ boy might have of good times and water.

Lyrics:
Inflatable pool full of dad’s hot air
I was three years old
Splashin’ everywhere
And so began my love affair
With water

On a river bank with all my friends
A big old rope tied to a limb
And you’re a big old wuss
if you don’t jump in
The water

Yeah when that summer sun starts to beatin’ down
and you don’t know what to do
Grab your swimming trunks
ice up that old igloo
Drive until the map turns blue

Play the track

[audio:http://thirstyinsuburbia.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/brad-paisley-water.mp3]

Download Water – Brad Paisley
Low-fi 64 kbps mp3 file for sampling.
Like it? Support the people who make music. Buy this track at iTunes or Amazon.com.

Bonus video: here, Paisley talks about his inspirations for the song. (Regarding the pond that’s on his property: “I work on that pond like most people work on their yards.”)

h2o mp3: The Drought Song – Carlos Guitarlos

Hard living has taken its toll on Carlos Guitarlos. In the 80s he was lead guitarist and songwriter for the cult-fave Los Angeles group Top Jimmy and the Rhythm Pigs (immortalized by the Van Halen song) and also recorded with Tom Waits and the Breeders. He spent most of the 1990’s just gettin’ by as a San Francisco street musician.

The 2003 album Straight from the Heart marked his personal and career comeback, and he’s reportedly now at work on a new acoustic collection. The bluesy-jazzy Drought Song reveals a raspy, ravaged voice and tepid backup, but it’s honest, sincere and enjoyable just the same.


Lyrics

This is a drought year now
Or so they say
You’ve got to use less water, everyday
Commissioner says he’s trying
You and I know he’s lying
Now it’s near

They say they can seed the clouds, and more in time
If you ask mother-nature, that’s a crime
And if we delay an hour, yes we will feel the power
Don’t you care?

Look at my garden, see how lush she grow
What’s my secret… wouldn’t you like to know?
Well, I’ve just been crying for hours
So we won’t lose the flowers
Don’t you cry

Play the track

[audio:http://thirstyinsuburbia.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/12-the-drought-song.mp3]

Download The Drought Song – Carlos Guitarlos
Low-fi 64 kbps mp3 file for sampling.
Like it? Support the people who make music. Buy this track at iTunes or Amazon.com

h2o mp3: No More Water in the Well – The Temptations

From 1961 to 1968 The Temptations went from virtual unknowns to international superstars, a key influence in defining the still-popular “Motown sound.” No More Water in the Well was released in 1967 at the zenith of the period known as the “Classic Five” era among Temptationologists featuring the lineup of Melvin Franklin, Eddie Kendricks, Otis Williams, Paul Williams, and David Ruffin. And, there’s more legendary talent tied up in this track; Smokey Robinson along with Miracles band mates Bobby Rogers and Pete Moore are the songwriters.

Lyrics
No more water in the well, baby no more
You take my love for granted like water
Water you spill and you waste
Though love is thicker than water
It spills quicker than water and you’ll look up one of these days
And there’ll be no more water in the well, baby no more

Play the track

[audio:http://thirstyinsuburbia.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/05-no-more-water-in-the-well.mp3]

Download No More Water in the Well – The Temptations
Low-fi 64 kbps mp3 file for sampling.
Like it? Support the people who make music. Buy this track at iTunes or Amazon.com