I’ve been listening to new music from Amos Lee. His Mission Bell is a bit mellower than some of his previous releases, but he just keeps putting out great music, employing primarily the same formula: acoustic guitar (often capoed high), piano/Wurlitzer, B3, and bass and drums. Highlighted, though, is his soulful voice that comes across so easy.
How do you categorize Amos Lee? Singer/Songwriter is the genre iTunes pegs him in, bringing to mind the likes of Jack Johnson, Tracy Chapman, and James Taylor. You couldn’t go wrong in that company.
Some compare him to Norah Jones (both are Blue Note artists and might as well have the same band), but whereas her first album, Come Away with Me, was really her best—really, how could you top five Grammys?—Amos Lee’s newer music is at least as good as his earlier stuff. I could listen to both Jones and Amos Lee all day long, though he is a better songwriter. She might have him on the singer portion of Singer/Songwriter.
If you’ve never heard of Amos Lee, you need to check him out. You can’t go wrong with his self-titled debut, featuring “Arms of a Woman,” although I’d recommend Supply and Demand with “Sweet Pea,” “Careless,” and “Southern Girl.” And Mission Bell is also quickly becoming a favorite.