8

114: Luciana Souza, ‘Morrer de Amor’

‘Morrer de Amor’ as sung by Luciana Souza – the lyrics of this song are in a language I don’t understand, and I know almost nothing about its background. But the rendition is of such utter beauty and unspeakable perfection that its emotional eloquence transcends explication. I’m just going to turn off my analytical brain, close my verbose mouth, and hope that you’ll be as moved by it as I am.

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2

051: The Ross Sisters, ‘Solid Potato Salad’

Don’t try this at home.

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16

267: Boz Scaggs, ‘Lowdown’ (“Fade Into Light”)

What a singer. What a musician. What a cool guy.

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13

261: Kurt Elling/Sting, ‘Practical Arrangement’

Love songs ain’t what they used to be.
Love ain’t what it used to be.
Kurt Elling brings something new to the table.

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10

029: Eva Cassidy, ‘Over the Rainbow’

Golden-haired, golden-voiced, painfully shy Eva Cassidy died in 1996 at 33 of skin cancer, unknown outside her native D.C.
She found posthumous fame three years later, via a British DJ.
Too kitsch to be true?
“Birds fly over the rainbow. Why can’t I?”
Have your handkerchief ready.

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8

245: Johnny Mathis, ‘Misty’

The gooiest song ever.
Let’s tryst again, like we did last summer.

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4

217: Amy Winehouse, ‘Back to Black’

Turns out 500,000,000 Amy Winehouse fans were right. Go figure.

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4

216: Billie Holiday, ‘God Bless the Child’

Billie Holiday, Amy Winehouse, Janis Joplin—their pain, their music, and us.

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