Arne Fogel of St. Louis Park:
1 Jana Nyberg, Twin Cities Jazz Fest. She lifted my spirits with her excellent vocal chops, taste and musicianship.
2 Rod Eaton’s Facebook posts. The drummer for the local ’60s legends TC Atlantic and the Underbeats offers delightful, poetic reminiscences with vintage photos.
3 “Sinatra! The Song Is You” by Will Friedwald. The greatest book written on Sinatra the musician has been revised and expanded.
Jon Bream of the Star Tribune:
1 Aretha Franklin tribute channel, Sirius XM. I’ve (re)discovered such gems as “The Thrill Is Gone,” “Muddy Water,” “Suzanne,” “I’ve Been Loving You Too Long” and “Spirit in the Dark” live with Ray Charles.
2 Shelby Lynne, the Cedar. What a gifted singer/writer of dark, painful alt-country songs, framed by Ben Peeler’s emotive guitar.
3 Prince, “Mary Don’t You Weep.” This solo piano version heard during the credits of Spike Lee’s must-see “BlacKkKlansman” is a much needed spiritual moment.