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Mayer Hawthorne On World Cafe | December 9, 2011

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Looking at Andrew Mayer Cohen in his Buddy Holly glasses, styled like Michael Buble's little brother, he could easily be construed as another poppy heart-breaker. But this young soul man from Detroit is actually a rising hip-hop and R&B artist. Known as Mayer Hawthorne in the music world, he's built an impressive reputation for himself.

When Hawthorne brought two tracks to Peanut Butter Wolf, head of the Stones Throw label, in 2008, Wolf actually didn't understand what he was listening to; he thought Cohen had brought him re-edits of classic songs. The fact that the youthful Hawthorne had composed the music, sung and played all of the instruments on the tracks was astounding. For the first time in the label's history, an artist was signed on the basis of only two tracks.

These days, Mayer Hawthorne is signed to a major label, and is promoting his third studio album, How Do You Do. The album is best described as retro soul with contemporary twists — Snoop Dogg is featured in the R&B confessional "Can't Stop." A talented composer, Hawthorne performs in the danceable style of hip-hop that made OutKast famous and the soulful R&B that Usher uses to make women cry. In the process, he imparts a twist on R&B that doesn't sacrifice any of the genre's classic charm.

Hear Hawthorne discuss his influences and Snoop Dogg's cameo, and play live on World Cafe.(link)

Hour 1

(( )) for interlude music

Tom Petty "Hometown Blues" Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
Langhorne Slim "Rebel Side of Heaven" Langhorne Slim
Real Estate "It's Real" Days
Beck "The New Pollution" Odelay
Diego Garcia "You Were Never There" Laura

((Mayer Hawthorne "The Ills" A Strange Arrangement))

Mayer Hawthorne "Dreaming" Recorded Live for the World Cafe
Mayer Hawthorne "The Walk" Recorded Live for the World Cafe
Mayer Hawthorne "A Long Time" Recorded Live for the World Cafe
Mayer Hawthorne "No Strings" Recorded Live for the World Cafe

((The Revelations "Because Of You" Deep Soul))

The Black Keys "Lonely Boy" El Camino
Norman Greenbaum "Spirit in the Sky" Super Hits of the 70's: Have a Nice Day, Vol.2
Sunbears "Give Love a Try" You Will Live Forever
The Swell Season "Low Rising" Strict Joy

Hour 2

The Cranberries "Linger" Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can't We?
Laura Marling "Sophia" A Creature I Don't Know
Neko Case "This Tornado Loves You" Middle Cyclone
John Cale "Paris 1919" Paris 1919
Beirut "Santa Fe" The Rip Tide

((Tristen "Doomsday" Charlatans at the Garden Gate))

Kathleen Edwards "Change the Sheets" Voyageur
Neil Young "Walk On" On the Beach
Iron & Wine "Me and Lazarus" Kiss Each Other Clean
The Postal Service "Such Great Heights" Give Up

((Horse Feathers "This Bed" Thistled Spring))

Joe Henry "Odetta" Reverie
Robert Cray "The Forecast (Calls for Pain)" Midnight Stroll
Lisa Hannigan "Knots" Passenger
Dawes "A Little Bit of Everything" Nothing Is Wrong

((Laura Gibson "Sweet Deception" Beasts Of Seasons))