Simple ideas are always the best. Give an artist a beat or a guitar and a time limit, and she/he is bound to come up with something entertaining.
On Black Cab Sessions, musicians are crammed into the back of a relatively cozy taxi and given one take to perform a stripped-down, dialed back version of a song from their catalog. No frills and very little audio production–just soul, charisma, and talent. Since its inception in 2007, this series has featured some of my favorite performances by artists that I continue to be excited about.
This year, for the insanely well booked English music festival Field Day, the folks at Black Cab Sessions shlepped several billed acts from the festival and prompted them to perform while they watched the London cityscape whiz by. In the video above, you can catch Run The Jewels lyrically slaying their track “Early”, Mac DeMarco playing an earnest acoustic version of his tender track, “The Way You’d Love Her”, and more performances from Gaz Coombs, Hackney Colliery Brass Band, and Baxter Dury. It’s a wonderful way to help you imagine what it might have been like the first time these artists thought of a song. Can’t you picture any of them driving to the grocery store, and humming a little a tune that would eventually become one of these tracks? I definitely can.
Which of the video is your favorite? I am a Mac DeMarco guy myself.