5 Favorite Musical Artists of Author Karin Lowachee

Karin was born in South America, grew up in Canada, and worked in the Arctic. Her first novel WARCHILD won the 2001 Warner Aspect First Novel Contest. Both WARCHILD (2002) and her third novel CAGEBIRD (2005) were finalists for the Philip K. Dick Award. CAGEBIRD won the Prix Aurora Award in 2006 for Best Long-Form Work in English and the Spectrum Award also in 2006. Her second novel BURNDIVE debuted at #7 on the Locus Bestseller List. Her books have been translated into French, Hebrew, and Japanese, and her short stories have appeared in anthologies edited by Julie Czerneda, Nalo Hopkinson, and John Joseph Adams. Her current fantasy novel, THE GASLIGHT DOGS, was published through Orbit Books USA.  Learn more about Karin at www.karinlowachee.com and follow her on Twitter and GoodReads.

These are 5 musical artists that I consider to be on permanent rotation in my life. I might listen to them more some weeks then not at all for other weeks, but they're artists that will never fall out of favor with me. I think I've grown into them and will grow along with them. (A full "never fall out of favor with me" list of musical artists would be longer than just 5, but here you get 5.)

In no particular order:

1. John Mayer

I got into his music pretty late, considering his career is about a decade long now. It's only been in the past 2 or 3 years that I've really given his music a go and I love it. You can really hear a progression -- even a lay person like me -- and I like that in artists, that growth in their art. I especially love the music he did with the Trio. I prefer his more bluesy songs (I love blues music, it gets me in my soul area), but I'm now addicted to his latest album "Born and Raised", which is definitely more Dylan/Young in sound. I've seen him live a few times now and enjoy those performances sometimes more than his studio recordings. He's truly a virtuoso guitarist and it's amazing to see him play. His album "Continuum" (and "Born and Raised") are desert island albums for me. "Slow Dancing in a Burning Room", "In Your Atmosphere", and "Covered in Rain" are 3 of my all time favorite songs. Find them and give them a listen -- I think you'll hear why.

2. Keith Urban

If Mayer's music appeals to a more bluesy/melancholy/laid back side of me, Keith Urban's music is pure energy and pep. He's a master melody writer, also a virtuoso guitar player, and I'll admit I got into him after seeing him perform with Mayer on Crossroads. There's such an honest joy in Urban's music, a hopefulness in his songs, and even the sad songs have such spot-on melodies that you somehow still feel uplifted (or at least cathartic) after listening. I've seen him live a couple times and he's got to be one of the best stage performers in the business. He puts his all into it (over 2 hour long shows). When people say they don't like country music, I tell them they haven't been Urbanized. On Youtube check out "Stupid Boy" (live).

3. Eminem

Talk about honesty. He scours your eardrums with it. As a wordsmith, I completely appreciate and admire how Eminem plays on words and concepts through his rap. I think he's a musical genius, and part of that genius is in how he both undercut and elevated the genre of rap music in his own way. His "personas" are as varied as any actor and how he melds that with his music in order to tell his story is fascinating and entertaining. From the scathing aggression in "White America" to a empowering "Not Afraid" off his album "Recovery".

4. Jeff Buckley

What else can be said about Jeff Buckley that hasn't already been said, honestly. Just if you've never heard his music, you need to find it right now. I had a Moment the first time I heard "Grace" and "Last Goodbye" ... then eventually his version of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah". That album is definitely one of my favorites of all time and it never, ever gets old.

5. Bjork

Her music can be both beautiful and odd, ethereal and gutterral. There isn't another artist on the planet quite like Bjork. Some of my favorite songs by her are "Violently Happy", "Army of Me", and "All is Full of Love". But this paragraph would be extremely long if I listed all the songs I love from her. She has this primordial quality, especially in her earlier work, where you feel her music truly must have existed when the continents were just breaking apart. Her unique vocals probably have something to do with that. Nobody sounds like Bjork.

And because I want to cheat, here is a Fast 5 for anyone interested to look them up: 1. David Usher, 2. Matthew Good, 3. Jason Mraz, 4. Massive Attack, 5. Ryan Adams.