Chris Milam is a singer/songwriter from Memphis whose singular passion (obsession?) is songs. In The Mix, Chris sits down with fellow artists and producers and asks one simple question: what songs mean the most to you? Each episode is an hourlong conversation where guests dive deep into the music that has inspired their art, informed their careers, and shaped their lives.
Track 13: Greg Cartwright
As singer and songwriter of Reigning Sound, Greg Cartwright has pulled off rock’s toughest trick: dependability. A luminary of garage rock, Cartwright’s talent, craft, and inexhaustible curiosity have produced thirty-plus years of music that miraculously never disappoints. Reigning Sound songs are knowing, petty, tender, brash, exultant, beautiful, and always generous. Their new album, A Little More Time with Reigning Sound, is out now! It boasts another collection of songs that are unmistakably Cartwright’s, but with something new to say. It’s one thing to make great albums; it’s another to be incapable of making a bad album. Greg Cartwright is a rare breed.
Track 12: Bonus
As you know, I ask guests what songs mean the most to them. Then, I close every conversation by asking my guest about a song of theirs I love. What you’re about to hear is that segment from all 10 episodes. These pieces are fascinating: some guests really open up talking about their own work, others demur. Some talk nuts-and-bolts craft; some get more personal. All of them are deft at speaking for themselves.
Listen to the Bonus Tracks on Spotify
The Mix: Bonus Track
1) The Hold Steady, "Wait A While"
2) William Bell, "You Don't Miss Your Water"
3) Garrison Starr, "To Garrison, On Her 29th Birthday"
4) IMAKEMADBEATS, "James"
5) Cory Branan, "Spoke Too Soon"
6) Talibah Safiya, "Middle of the Night"
7) Good Question, "Catcher In The Rain"
8) Cory Branan, "The Freefall"
9) Margo Price, "Four Years Of Chances"
10) Liz Brasher, "Painted Image"
Track 11: You
The Mix is an hourlong conversation where I ask fellow artists one question: "what songs means the most to you?" But in this special live episode, the guest is you. You wrote in with your most meaningful songs and co-host Elizabeth Cawein and I dove deep into your mix.
Listen to Your Mix on Spotify:
Listen to Elizabeth's Mix on Spotify:
1) Stevie Nicks, "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around"2) Ray Charles, "You Don't Know Me"
3) Otis Redding, "Try a Little Tenderness"
4) Ryan Adams, "Come Pick Me Up"
5) Skee-Lo, "I Wish"
6) Rolling Stones, "Shine A Light"
7) The Beatles, "Something"
8) Big Star, "Thirteen"
Track 10: Liz Brasher
Liz Brasher is a force. Half Dominican, Half Italian, recent Memphian, Liz’s music is as eclectic as her background. Her voice alone would earn her attention—soulful, dextrous, powerful. But she’s also a multi-instrumentalist, a fearsome guitar-player, an accomplished songwriter. In her two releases, Liz synthesizes soul, blues, garage rock, and Latin influences into something distinctly her own.
Listen to Liz's Mix on Spotify:
Liz Brasher's Mix:
1) Mahalia Jackson, "Elijah Rock"
2) Amy Winehouse, "You Know I'm No Good"
3) Bob Dylan, "Dark Eyes"
4) The Ventures, "Walk, Don't Run"
5) The Meters, "Cissy Strut"
6) Otis Redding, "Free Me"
7) Iron Maiden, "Hallowed Be Thy Name"
8) Bobbie Gentry, "Mississippi Delta"
9) Pete Drake, "The Spook"
10) The Monophonics, "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)"
11) The Sonics, "Strychnine"
12) Liz Brasher, "Painted Image"
Track 9: Matt Ross-Spang
Matt Ross-Spang is a rising star. He began as an intern at legendary Sun Studio at age 16, and worked his way up to Chief Engineer in short order. After engineering Jason Isbell’s Something More Than Free, Matt Ross-Spang earned two Grammy's and credits with John Prine, Margot Price, Al Green, and—bringing it all back home—Elvis. But as you’ll hear, his attitude sets him apart: easy-going and hospitable, considerate, strikingly modest. In an industry filled with grifters, divas, and ne’erdowells, Matt Ross-Spang is proof that good things still happen to good people.
Listen to Matt's Mix on Spotify:
Matt Ross-Spang's Mix:
1) R.E.M., "Man On The Moon"
2) John Prine, "How Lucky"
3) Dan Penn, "Nobody's Fool"
4) Ann Peebles, "(You Keep Me) Hangin' On"
5) Bobby Charles, "I Must Be In A Good Place Now"
6) Courtney Marie Andrews, "Took You Up"
7) Billy Swan, "Don't Be Cruel"
8) Chuck Berry, "You Never Can Tell"
9) Margot Price, "Four Years Of Chances"
10) Chris Isaak, "Wicked Game"
11) Bill Withers, "Let Me In Your Life"
12) Al Green, "Simply Beautiful"
Track 8: Cory Branan
No artist has impacted my adult life more than Cory Branan. One of my luckiest breaks was discovering his music at the moment I was just starting to think about (maybe, one day) making my own. Cory's now five albums into a career that began with Rolling Stone anointing him the next great American songwriter. For once, they weren’t wrong. He’s a contemporary of heralded artists like Josh Ritter, Craig Finn, Conor Oberst, and longtime friend Jason Isbell. To my ears, he’s that generation’s greatest lyricist.
Listen to Cory's Mix on Spotify:
Cory Branan's Mix:
1) Warren Zevon, "Desperados Under the Eaves"
2) John Prine, "You Got Gold"
3) Joni Mitchell, "A Case of You"
4) Belle & Sebastian, "Dear Catastrophe Waitress"
5) Gillian Welch, "I Dream A Highway"
6) James McMurtry, "Copper Canteen"
7) The Faces, "Ooh La La"
8) Creedence Clearwater Revival, "Lodi"
9) Cory Branan "The Freefall"
10) Bruce Springsteen, "Dry Lightning"
11) Mark Knopfler, "Beachcombing"
12) Guy Clark, "Desperados Waiting For A Train"
Wisdom from the center of the music universe
Memphis loves its music secrets but they're worth sharing with the world. Chris chooses an amazing group of artists and adjacents to tell stories that give a whole new prespective on their work to those who know them and a warm welcome to those who don't.
Not the same old same old
Chris doesn’t just interview, he relates. He asks novel and personal questions the artists actually have to think about and you can tell they appreciate all the thought and preparation.
Great music podcast!
This is a fascinating look into the Memphis music world, really looking forward to the rest of the season!