Alan Brown’s 2021 Suggested Listening includes Massing, Paramore, Kacey Musgraves, and more

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It’s that time of year again! WOUB Culture has reached out to a variety of folks involved in various capacities with the music and arts throughout WOUB’s diverse coverage region to inquire: “what have you been listening to this year, my friend?” Find their answers on WOUB Culture all throughout the month of December. 

We’re kicking off the series with picks from Alan “Corduroy” Brown, check out WOUB’s review and feature on his most recent release, “Let Me Know,” right here

Alan Brown

I’m Alan (Corduroy) Brown, a musician from Huntington, West Virginia!
If you would’ve asked me if I thought I would’ve died at 30… then came back, I wouldn’t have believed you.
I’ve got more life to live, and a lot of that involves music. Here are some albums and songs that have moved me this year.

1. Paramore – “After Laughter” (2017)

No matter what I do, I can’t escape this album. It really hit me at the time I needed it most. A lot of the songs are wrapped in happy tones until you dive in lyrically. Every song speaks to a part of my life. Each emotion has a place in this album. Paramore often gets referred to for their early catalogue, but this album feels so grown up. We were all young listening to the angst, but this feels so perfect as a now 30-year-old.

2. Kacey Musgraves – “Camera Roll” (2021)

Leave it to Kacey to drop an emotional bomb at the right time. There are definitely going to be a lot of female artists on this list. I find myself listening to female fronted acts a lot more often than male.
I think all of us have found ourselves getting lost in the past at times. I keep seeing a theme of this year. You can’t write new chapters if you keep reading the old ones. Kacey is really afraid to let go of these photos on her camera roll from her ex lover.
We’ve all been there. Even though seeing those memories does so much damage,  she continues to keep them around. It’s a bittersweet song, but it’s a lesson for all of us.

3. Arctic Monkeys – “Star Treatment” (Live) (2020)

The Arctic Monkeys always have a place in my heart. This is my song I go to when I’m just feeling GOOD. Maybe a little arrogant. It’s the perfect song after completing a list of things you’ve been meaning to finish for awhile, or if that girl you’ve been talking to finally goes on a date with you. Alex Turner’s imagery is always so impressive. I wish I could have some of that creative energy in my brain one day. The live version of the Monkey’s songs stand out because you just never know what Alex is going to say. This is the ultimate end of the day song.  Chase those dreams. Be cocky about it once in a while.

4. Massing – “Over Now” (2019)

I can’t leave my good friends and fellow Huntington musicians Massing out of the list. The Huntington music scene really is unrivaled. I used to be in a band with lead vocalist and trumpet player Heath Holley. As much fun as that was, I’m so glad that both of us have our own entities now because they are so powerful separately. Massing knows how to write heartbreak songs, but it’s not your typical mopey material. Honesty is so strong in all of their lyrics, and it’s what draws me in every time. Listen to Massing. You won’t be disappointed.

5. John R Miller – “Faustina” (2021)

I guarantee that this is THE most played song for me this year. I love when music can make you feel different things each time that you listen to it. I am still finding ways to make this apply to my life, however many times I’ve heard it.
John R really does write grown man songs. No one sounds like him. No one writes like him. No one plays like him. Hearing his songs has made me get my guitars out so much more because I’m trying to just keep up with every little nuance of his playing.
This song will move you.