Almost a year ago, Laura Burhenn, one half of the now-defunct Georgie James, traversed the country, set up shop in Oregon, and recorded the debut album of her new band, The Mynabirds.
Burhenn, “always want[ing] to make a record that sounded like Neil Young doing Motown,” does the blue-eyed soul genre proud on “Numbers Don’t Lie.” Interestingly enough, the band gets its name from the fabled R&B group formed in 1964, The Mynah Birds, which at one time featured Neil Young himself. And Rick James. So, there’s that.
Growing up, my family raised me on the oldies station, WQRL. This track reminds me of that music we blasted from the radio of my dad’s baby blue Ford pickup. Songs like Bobbie Gentry’s “Ode to Billy Joe” and Dusty Springfield’s “Son of a Preacher Man” are sleepy and soulful and southern, and “Numbers Don’t Lie” transports that perfect era of music into a modern setting with grace and ease.
Plus, the lyrics are so damn catchy. “Baby, if you wanna be right, I will let you be right/ I will let you be right/ You know that the numbers don’t lie, oh no, the numbers don’t lie/ Two wrongs will not make it right…” The best argument is a logical one, oh yes.
And to me, the best song is a sweet, soul gem.
What We Lose in the Fire We Gain in the Flood comes out April 27, 2010 on Saddle Creek.