Like investing and real estate I leave music recommendations to the experts. One of whom is my buddy Mike Turner living in Chicago as a producer and label scout. He also works with global radio station KEXP out of Seattle and they have a post of their top music picks for the year.
Mike Turner, Equalizer Chicago producer
Lupe Fiasco -The Cool (Atlantic)
Office - A Night At The Ritz (Scratchi Records)
Tom Schraeder -The Door The Gutter The Grave (self-released)
Ariel -The Battle of Sealand (High Wheel Records)
Cracklin Moth -My Heart is Leaking (self-released)
Cameron McGill and What Army -Hold on Beauty (self-released)
Bang Bang -The Dirt That Makes You Drown (Morpheus Records)
Andrew Bird -Armchair Apocrypha (Fat Possum)
Tenniscourts -Self titled (self-released)
The 1900’s -Cold and Kind (Parasol Records)
Photo above if you're wondering is from the Crocodile Cafe in Seattle where many of the bands synonymous with grunge played, before what they played became known as grunge. Sadly they closed a couple weeks ago. This image is of the control booth at the back from a show I attended in November. You can see electrical safety is a prime concern as amongst the beautiful chaos of extension chords and over plugged plugs the fire extinguisher is easily accessible.