I discovered Conor Oberst after reading the lyrics to Bright Eyes' "Lua" on an ancient blogging site. Oberst's lyrics have always been fascinating to me, and as I got older they became increasingly relate-able. Making love, getting fucked, detoxing... he's pretty much covered it all.
2007's Cassadaga stole my heart, and I have followed Conor on all of his musical pursuits since. While "Lua" and "Lover I Don't Have to Love" are obvious classics, I've put together a playlist of a few songs that take a few extra listens to grasp, but mean so much more than many of his more radio-friendly singles.
He'll be releasing his first solo album in six years on May 20 (yep, that's my birthday). It's hard for me to pick a favorite 'version' of Oberst... I fell in love with Bright Eyes but there is a certain rawness about his solo work that I have learned to love even more.
Oberst fans: what would you have put on this list?
Land Locked Blues | Bright Eyes | I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning
A good woman will pick you apart, a box full of suggestions for your possible heart.
Haligh, Haligh, A Lie, Haligh | Bright Eyes | Fevers and Mirrors
Blue Angel Air Show | Bright Eyes | Noise Floor (Rarities 1998-2005)
Four Winds | Bright Eyes | Cassadaga
Get-Well-Cards | Conor Oberst | Conor Oberst
Devil Town | Bright Eyes | Noise Floor (Rarities 1998-2005)
Jejune Stars | Bright Eyes | The People's Key
Easy/Lucky/Free | Bright Eyes | Digital Ash in a Digital Urn
Old Soul Song (For the New World Order) | Bright Eyes | I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning
Milk Thistle | Conor Oberst | Conor Oberst
Classic Cars | Bright Eyes | Cassadaga
A Perfect Sonnet | Bright Eyes | Every Day and Every Night
A Poetic Retelling of an Unfortunate Seduction | Bright Eyes | Letting off the Happiness
Big Black Nothing | Conor Oberst & The Mystic Valley Band | Outer South
One For You, One For Me | Bright Eyes | The People's Key
I Will Be Grateful for This Day | Bright Eyes | Noise Floor (Rarities 1998-2005)
Nothing Gets Crossed Out | Bright Eyes | LIFTED Or The Story is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the Ground
Black Comedy | Conor Oberst & Neva Dinova | One Jug of Wine, Two Vessels
The saddest sound we ever heard, we sang along.