The Sunshine

I definitely would have first heard the band Manchester Orchestra on KEXP Seattle. The sound of the the indie-rock foursome from Atlanta, Georgia, USA is a natural fit for the broadcaster.

The public radio station, affiliated with the University of Washington, held its annual fall fundraiser last week, raising over 1.1 million USD in just one week. They have a huge following, a faithful audience that appreciates the DJs for their humanity, community spirit and, yes, the fantastic mix of songs they play. I’ve found a lot of music I love through listening to the station after a friend and colleague recommended their Music That Matters podcast some years ago. As I’ve said before, I especially enjoy KEXP’s The Morning Show with John Richards.

The first song I heard by the band was “The Alien,” a ballad of family dysfunction and trauma, bullying, and the community destruction that can result from those and other societal ills. I find it a difficult song to listen to though it is brilliantly written, played and sung. It is from the band’s fifth and latest album, A Black Mile to the Surface (2017). The collection has some dark undertones, but one track that is quite different from the rest is “The Sunshine.” 

Another song that has had a significant play from the album is the opening track, “The Maze,” which appears in the trailer for the Netflix science fiction series, Away. I mentioned in a post about a month ago that Sweety and I had started watching that show. We finished the series quickly. It was entertaining and kept our interest right up to the suspenseful ending.

Of today’s selection, “The Sunshine,” the lyrics website Genius.com says, “This song is Andy Hull speaking to his baby daughter. He dreams that how he feels about her is how she also feels about him. She is his sunshine, his moonlight, his everything.” It’s easy to see that in the lyrics he wrote:

“I already know that I don’t already know
You are the sunlight
I don’t really care if you don’t understand
You are the moonlight

And that’s alright, alright with me
Oh, that’s alright

I don’t really mind if you don’t really mind
You are the sunshine
You don’t have to know if you don’t want to know
You are the moonlight

Oh and that’s alright, alright with me
Oh that’s alright, alright with me
Oh that’s alright, alright with me
Oh that’s alright, alright with me
Oh that’s alright, alright with me
Oh that’s alright

Alright (I’m) alright (I’m) alright (I’m) alright (I’m) alright”

(“The Sunshine,” by Andy Hull)

The band has a distinctive sound that I enjoy, though the darkness in some of their music means I’m not drawn to listen to a lot of it in one sitting. But just as the sun was warming on a cold and windy day like today, and how a new life brightens the world, “The Sunshine” is a radiant spot on the album.

Now you know a little about why this is my song of the day for today. Thanks for joining me here, and please enjoy.

Here’s the official music video for the song from Manchester Orchestra’s YouTube channel:

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