My Top Ten Albums By Play Count

or

You Are Who You Listen To

The following are my top ten most played albums according to their play counts in iTunes. I would preface this by saying that these are not necessarily my top ten favorite albums of all time, and not all of them are, but some of them are in that category. The rule I’ve given myself here is that there can only be one album per artist, otherwise this list would be entirely comprised of Tori Amos and Lady Gaga. I know, what a gay stereotype I am, right? Well shut the hell up, I like what I like.

Who Killed Amanda Palmer

by Amanda Palmer

Total Plays: 137

Most Played Songs: Astronaut, Leeds United, Have to Drive, Guitar Hero

Amanda Palmer is one of the most underappreciated artists in the music industry. Though she has an extremely devoted fan base, she’s never received any radio air time that I’ve ever heard, but she is far and away one of the most incredible feminists, free thinkers, and musicians of the modern era. Her first solo album is a beautiful mixture of genres, from the tragic opening story of an Astronaut whose limbs fall to the beach as his wife watches in horror after his shuttle explodes to the upbeat diddy about rape and abortion, and an incredibly emotional song about finding a dead deer in the road, Amanda touches on a little of everything. My favorite kind of albums are the ones that include multiple kinds of songs from multiple genres with multiple perspectives. This one fits the bill perfectly.

Details

by Frou Frou

Total Plays: 147

Most Played Songs: The Dumbing Down of Love, Shh, Hear Me Out, Let Go

If this were a list of my favorite albums, Details would be much higher up, at least in the top three. If I were stranded on a desert island and had to choose a few albums to take with me this is one that would come along. Details is a mystery. When I first heard it I didn’t get it. The songs all blended together into a sort of weird hodgepodge of sound that wasn’t minor or dark enough for me to be instantly attracted to it. I liked Let It Go from the beginning, but other than that I ignored this album for a long time. Then one day something just clicked and I couldn’t stop listening to it. I’d listen to the entire thing from start to finish and then repeat it over and over again. I felt so creative, so alive, as though I’d tapped in to some joyful and bittersweet energy permeating the universe that I’d never felt before. The Dumbing Down of Love was one of the first songs to ever hit me so hard that it was like some kind of emotional armor surrounding me cracked and shattered to the floor, and then that song reached inside of me where it was warm and touched something. I found myself standing alone in a room mouthing the words as I heard it, and understanding how extremely profound the phrase “lover alone without love” could be, sinking into sadness and yet at the same time finding comfort. One of the most magical albums ever made.

The Dresden Dolls

by The Dresden Dolls

Total Plays: 148

Most Played Songs: Half Jack, Girl Anachronism, Bad Habit, Missed Me

If there’s one thing I love, it’s music that can be described using the key words “brooding,” “dark,” or “piano.” The Dresden Dolls’ self-titled debut is a fantastic work of art from start to finish. I still haven’t even listened extensively to the whole album, I’ve only heard the songs Slide and Truce once or twice, but certain songs like Girl Anachronism, Missed Me, and Coin-Operated Boy just get in your head and don’t leave you alone. If this album were a person it would be a disturbed cabaret mime who makes love on stage and murders people in back alleys at night. And it just doesn’t get better than that.

Ellipse

by Imogen Heap

Total Plays: 164

Most Played Songs: First Train Home, Tidal, Earth, 2-1

This album means so much to me. I discovered Imogen Heap when this album had just been recently released, and while waiting to have the money to buy it, I watched all forty video blogs she created about the making of this album. Those video blogs and Imogen’s music gave me the will to pull myself out of a huge rut that my life was in, and because of that, I had the courage to start creating music again, writing again, and I even got out of an unhealthy relationship. If not for discovering Imogen, I don’t know that that would have happened. Ellipse is like a forest: you wander through and you find so many different things that seem to be dissident, and yet they all live happily together and somehow just work. Earth sounds nothing like Swoon, and Aha! sounds completely different than Wait It Out, yet they all go together, and not one song would sound right without having the others around it. Ellipse is an album that’s genuinely a pure expression of one person’s truth from beginning to end, and carries with it a certain energy that finds it way through the songs that can only be described as “soundscapes.” Normally I hate that word because it’s a nonsense editorial cop-out word to make something sound cool, but this is the exception to the rule, because Ellipse is genuinely crafted. Every moment, every tiny sound, every rustling of sheets, banging of radiators, dripping of faucets, and butt slap was meticulously, carefully, and lovingly placed. This may be Imogen’s masterwork.

Far

by Regina Spektor

Total Plays: 167

Most Played Songs: Eet, The Calculation, Laughing With, Folding Chair

It’s kind of funny to me that this one won out over Regina’s compilation album Mary Ann Meets The Gravediggers and Other Shorts Stories, because I remember listening to that one incessantly for days on end. I have, however, had Far for a much longer time, and it’s song are very easy to return to. Far is more of a pop album than any of Regina’s other work, but somehow it still retains her uniqueness, while drawing inspiration from pop but leaving behind the bad qualities of that genre. There aren’t any repetitive choruses or annoying refrains on this album, just a sense of whimsy that manages to find Regina somehow chirping and lilting about subjects from love and humanity to masturbation, alienation, death, hate crimes, and the mechanization of the world. She just has a gift for throwing everything including the kitchen sink into an album and it still working.

ARTPOP

by Lady Gaga

Total Plays: 224

Most Played Songs: Sexxx Dreams, Venus, Do What U Want, ARTPOP

Lady Gaga rocked the entire world with her debut album The Fame, then rocked it harder with The Fame’s companion album The Fame Monster, and reached kind of a peak with Born This Way. Honestly, the first album was general pop music with a little something special infused, but it was more the attitude that delivered it than anything extremely unique. Gaga really upped her game with The Fame Monster, with songs that were big warehouse thumping dance numbers. Born This Way, however, fell mostly flat for me, with a lot of ballads that I’m sure came from the heart but sounded insincere in the delivery.

I had pretty much assumed Lady Gaga was done, and that her best work was behind her when I heard ARTPOP announced, and even then I rolled my eyes and though it was such a pretentious name that there was no way it would be good. My expectations were thoroughly and unpredictably exceeded with what is one of the best pop albums I’ve ever heard. You can open it up to any random track and find yourself instantly pulled in. Almost every single track on the album is a pop masterpiece, though there are some misses: Jewels N’ Drugs is nigh unlistenable and Fashion! seems a little too inside of Gaga’s comfort zone. However, tracks like Sexx Dreams, Venus, and the steady march of the title track can be listened to infinitely without getting boring. Sometimes I have to listen to songs twice just because the first time wasn’t good enough. With a lot of these other albums, the plays took years to rack up, but all of the plays on ARTPOP are fairly recent, since it’s only been out for a year. I look forward to the ARTPOP Part Two that Gaga keeps promising and hinting at.

Animal + Cannibal

by Ke$ha

Total Plays: 288

Most Played Songs: The Harold Song, Cannibal, Stephen, Take It Off, Tik Tok, Animal

I didn’t like Ke$ha at first. In fact, I found her insufferable. She seemed like a Disney star gone total slut, and her music made my ears bleed. Then, and I kid you not this is entirely true, I had a drunken orgy with five other guys while Tik Tok played on the radio throughout the night, and the following morning when I had a hangover, I suddenly “got” Ke$ha. I don’t mean that I identified with her more because of the experience, but for some reason I liked her from that moment forward. I had hated Tik Tok and it suddenly became a total jam song for me, and a few months later I found myself getting ahold of Animal and listening to it on repeat incessantly for days on end. As with Lady Gaga’s The Fame, Ke$ha released a companion EP entitled Cannibal with even more great songs on it, like the incredibly addictive title track and the now classic club dance song We R Who We R. Not to mention that Cannibal’s “The Harold Song” is one of the most genuinely touching songs I’ve ever heard, and I routinely curled into a ball crying myself to sleep with that song playing in my ears during a huge breakup. Ke$ha’s songs aren’t exactly pure insight into the human spirit or filled with lessons about the world, but there’s something so extremely honest about her music, and it comes from such a place of genuine truth that I cannot help but respect it. I am still surprised that this beautiful, glittery young woman has managed to captivate me, but something about pure honesty just touches me, and even if you’re singing songs about getting drunk from a water bottle filled with Whiskey, if you’re doing it from a place of honesty I’m right there with you, drinking and throwing glitter around an empty pool.

Boys For Pele

by Tori Amos

Total Plays: 280

Most Played Songs: Father Lucifer, Not The Red Baron, Beauty Queen / Horses, Caught A Lite Sneeze, Mr. Zebra, Talula

I’m breaking my own rules here because Ke$ha beat this album by eight plays, however many of these songs were included in their original form in Tori’s box set, and if I were to include all of the Boys For Pele songs that I played from the box set, this album would probably come a lot closer to topping the list. Boys For Pele is far and away one of my favorite albums, and perhaps my MOST favorite album, of all time. I didn’t know how to feel about Tori at first: I’d heard of her, I’d heard her cover of Smells Like Teen Spirit, but it was when I saw an unbelievably gripping live performance of Precious Things that I fell for her. Still, I started out on her retrospective collection Tales of a Librarian, which, though a treat for a Tori fan who knows the original songs, butchers the original mixes of every song on the album and nearly unlistenable to anyone who isn’t already a fan. I still wanted to give her a chance though, so when I read that Boys For Pele was the most outlandish of her albums I got it right away. It did not disappoint.

The album opens perfectly. Beauty Queen is slow, like the footsteps of someone in dirty rags, wandering through a field, and then when Horses begins, I’m instantly pulled in, I’m riding with those horses, and it’s cold and wet in the fields of Ireland, and we’re descending into the depths, into hell, into the underworld, into the deepest part of ourselves. Boys For Pele is more than just an album, it’s a journey into the darkest and most secret places that live inside of all of us. Tori speaks to her dark prince in Father Lucifer, she approaches the dark energy with respect and love, she seethes anger into Professional Widow and Mr. Zebra, she delivers heartbreaking and breathless words of sorrow and loss in Caught a Lite Sneeze and Not the Red Baron. She plays the piano as well as the harpsichord, and anything could happen, from a brass band to a gospel choir, taking us deeper into the darkness. In the end we emerge into the starlight of the night with Twinkle, and become lost in reflection. This album is so intense that it is almost draining to listen to, and is very difficult to hear in it’s entirety because there are no, forgive the wordplay, “light breezes” to be found here. Even quick songs like Agent Orange have deep meaning, and there’s not a shallow song in the bunch. Blood is splattered across every song, the pain of a broken heart radiates through each word, and the feeling of being lost in the world, of being the thoughtless and senseless monster that is a living being, is captured here forever.

Into The Woods: Original Cast Recording

by Stephen Sondheim

Total Plays: 352

Most Played Songs: Ever After, No One Is Alone, Finale: Children Will Listen, Lament, Giants In The Sky, Prologue: Into the Woods, Your Fault / Last Midnight

Into the Woods arrived in my life only a few months ago. My boyfriend found it on Netflix and made me watch it. I wasn’t very interested at first, though I enjoyed the humor. In one night we watched the first act, and the following day I watched the second act on my own. I was blown away. I had to watch the whole show again. And then again, and again. I got hold of the music and started listening to it on repeat. Into the Woods is the story of the journey through life. Everything here is a metaphor, and yet the characters are so real. The Witch is in all of us, Rapunzel is in all of us, and The Baker’s Wife are in all of us. Into the Woods is a story of survival against great odds, of moving forward in the midst of deep grief and suffering, and a story that is a rich wellspring of meaning with each listen. I’m really excited to see the movie this Christmas, it just so happened that I discovered there was an upcoming movie adaptation soon after discovering the musical itself. My boyfriend has gotten so tired of hearing music from Into the Woods that he laments ever having shown it to me, but I think it’s one of the greatest gifts he could have given me. Into the Woods resonates with me very deeply.

Lungs

by Florence + the Machine

Total Plays: 1,353

Most Played Songs: Swimming, Howl, Dog Days Are Over, Drumming Song, Cosmic Love, My Boy Builds Coffins, Heavy In Your Arms

The jump from the last album is a staggering one thousand plays, and believe it or not, I haven’t fudged those numbers whatsoever. Between the five different editions of Lungs, I’ve racked up a lot of plays,but even if I were going with the standard edition it would still be far ahead of any other album in this list. I discovered this album in 2010 and have only just now four years later reached a point where I don’t feel the need to listen to it incessantly day after day. Swimming is perhaps one of my favorite songs in the world, among others here, and Lungs is one of the most unique and special albums because it blends many diverse sounds that are all uniquely Florence’s into one album. No two songs are exactly alike, and the lyrics to these songs are pure poetry that would hold up anywhere. Florence manages to have a talent for metaphor that she can still tell in perfect rhythm and rhyme, and she crafts unbelievable songs to fit them. Dog Days Are Over is the most pure expression of joy that I’ve ever heard in a song, Swimming is so inspirational that it seems to have the quality of someone singing to you from beyond Heaven, and Drumming Song is such a pounding and pure expression of desire and longing that it’s like drowning to hear it. Howl is the most lustful song I’ve ever heard, in which Florence becomes a night creature ripping through skin and sinew to reach the heart of a lover, to reach the core of them, to take pleasure and bask in the radiance of pure, warm lust.

This album, along with Boys For Pele and Details are contenders for “greatest album of all time” in my opinion. I doubt I’ll ever play enough songs to match the ferocity with which I listened to this wellspring of music for the first few years. Florence also has the distinction, in this era of her career that I refer to as “the Lungs era,” in which there is literally no song that I don’t like. Not one. I love all of them. There are some I like less, but even the live tracks, the demos, the live performances, they’re all completely perfect, and I wouldn’t change one. Her energy here is one that embraces darkness and light, and they burst forth in a joyful, mournful, sexual, and longing musical embrace that can never be ignored or forgotten.

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The Sandwiches Are Wicked And They Know You At The Mac Store: The Discography Of Amanda Palmer

amandapalmer

Amanda Palmer is one of my personal heroes. I discovered her a few years ago completely by accident when her song Astronaut popped up in Spotify, and I fell for her instantly. Her piano-banging, open and honest and not-giving-a-fuck style of lyric writing and living in general, she’s been a real inspiration to me as a musician, an author, and a person, and a lot of time it’s been her music that inspired me to keep writing. Her discography is pretty scattered, as her relationship with record companies has always been difficult, and she has jumped from project to project, meaning that she has technically been in four bands and performed as a solo artist as well, but it all began with the Dresden Dolls in 2003. This is not really a compendium of B-Sides and rarities, more a guideline of what albums and singles she’s released, so that anyone looking to get into her music will have an idea of where to start. It should also be noted that almost everything on this entire list is available completely for free on her official website and her Bandcamp page, where it’s almost entirely “pay what you want,” meaning you can choose to have it for free or support her as an artist, a sales model I really love and support. When I first discovered her I had no money, so I took her up on the offer and downloaded the albums all for free, but later when I had the means I threw her a bit of money when buying an album to support her art. This incidentally is really the way I plan to release my music, if I can ever get an album put together (although as a side note, I finally finished compiling my demo album and put it up on Bandcamp, a decision largely inspired by Amanda). So let’s dive right in, shall we?

The Dresden Dolls

The Dresden Dolls

Amanda began her career as one-half of the Dresden Dolls, playing piano and singing while her partner Brian Viglione provided drums, guitar, and the occasional backup vocal. They invented a genre they call “Punk Cabaret,” which is essentially where all of the Panic! at the Disco / Moulin Rouge / The Killers / New Orleans whorehouse / circus freak aesthetic you’ve seen in a million bands since the mid-2000’s came from. It’s not like they’re to first people to ever dress like mimes and have circus acts at their shows, but they should really be credited with having a huge part in the movement of that aesthetic in popular music. In total they released four albums in their career, the first of which was a live album that served as a kind of teaser for the their debut album, and the third of which consisted entirely of B-Sides and cut material from the second album. Later on Amanda released a digital version of a their live album on Bandcamp. They also released a self-titled EP, but as far as I know the only track to ever surface online is the demo version of Girl Anachronism, which they included on their “Live and Unreleased” downloads page on their website, consisting almost entirely of live recordings by fans, and featuring several guest performers, including The Ambitious Orchestra and Ryan Ross of Panic! at the Disco. The downloads page is still active, and all of the songs are still available for download, though they’re not greatly formatted, so I’m going to include my compilation “Live And Unreleased” as I have it in my music library with suggestions on how to organize the tracks.

A very important thing to know if you’re interested in purchasing Amanda’s music is that she purportedly gets paid NOTHING by the album company if you purchase the albums on iTunes, Amazon, or any place other than her official website or on her Bandcamp page, which includes all of her albums, including those in which she’s involved with a band. So, if you want to support her by buying the music, do so on her Bandcamp page, because if you purchase the albums on iTunes or Amazon, all of that money just goes to a record company that doesn’t even support her music anymore, so you’re literally throwing money away. Even if you paid full-price for all of her music on iTunes, you wouldn’t be supporting her art in any way. In summation, buy the music from her Bandcamp page, or download it all for free from there.

Dresden Dolls EP

The Dresden Dolls [EP]
Released: 2001

1. Half Jack
2.  Girl Anachronism
3. The Perfect Fit
4. Colorblind
5.  Good Day

Notes: All of these songs are demo versions. As far as I know the only demo ever to be released online is the Girl Anachronism demo, available on the Dresden Dolls’ downloads archive on their official website.

Original Cover

Original Album Cover

A Is For Accident
Release Date: May 27, 2003 (Original Release)
October 20, 2009 (Bandcamp Re-Release)

1. Missed Me (Live Demo)
2. Coin-Operated Boy (Live At TT’s)
3. The Time Has Come (Live At The Milky Way)
4. Mrs. O (Live At Luxx)
5. Christopher Lydon (Live At Sanders Theater)
6. Glass Slipper (Live At TT’s)
7. Thirty Whacks (Live On WBRS)
8. Bank Of Boston Beauty Queen (Live On WMBR)
9. Will (Album Outtake – B.C. Studio)
10. Truce (Live Demo)

2009 Bandcamp Re-Release Bonus Tracks

11. Stand By Your Man (Live At The Lizard Lounge)
12. A Night At The Roses (B-Side From the Good Day 7″ Single)

Bandcamp Album Cover

Bandcamp Album Cover

The Dresden Dolls

The Dresden Dolls
Release Date: September 26, 2003

1. Good Day
2. Girl Anachronism
3. Missed Me
4. Half Jack
5. 672
6. Coin-Operated Boy
7. Gravity
8. Bad Habit
9. The Perfect Fit
10. The Jeep Song
11. Slide
12. Truce

Physical album cover

Physical album cover

Yes, Virginia…
Release Date: April 14, 2006

1. Sex Changes
2. Backstabber
3. Modern Moonlight
4. My Alcoholic Friends
5. Delilah
6. Dirty Business
7. First Orgasm
8. Mrs. O
9. Shores of California
10. Necessary Evil
11. Mandy Goes To Med School
12. Me & The Minibar
13. Two-Headed Boy
14. Sing

Notes: Track 13, Two-Headed Boy, is a cover of a Neutral Milk Hotel song. It isn’t available on physical editions on the album, and appears as track 13 on the Bandcamp release, as well a bonus track 14 on the iTunes release. Pretty In Pink is a cover of a song by The Psychedelic Furs. Also, there is an advance version of Yes, Virginia… that contains an earlier version of Sing in which the first line is “There is this thing that’s like fucking except you don’t fuck,” as opposed to the line on the final version, “There is this thing that’s like touching except you don’t touch.”

Digital album cover

Digital album cover

Standard edition/physical album cover

Standard edition / physical album cover

No, Virginia…
Release Date:  May 20, 2008

1. Deary Jenny
2. Night Reconnaissance
3. The Mouse And The Model
4. Ultima Esperanza
5. The Gardener
6. Lonesome Organist Rapes Page Turner
7. Sorry Bunch
8. Pretty In Pink
9. The Kill
10. The Sheep Song
11. Boston

Special Edition Bonus Tracks
12. Glass Slipper (Live In St. Louis)
12. A Night At The Roses
13. I Would For You

Notes: I Would For You is a Jane’s Addiction cover, and the version of Night At The Roses included here is exactly the same recording from A is for Accident, which incidentally is featured as track 12 on the Bandcamp version of the album. Also, The Gardener, The Kill, and Boston are all purported to be Yes, Virginia… B-Sides, and I don’t deny that, I just can’t find the singles or material they were B-Sides on)

Special Edition Album Cover

Special Edition Album Cover

Dresden Dolls

Live And Unreleased
The following is a compilation of all the available tracks from the Dresden Dolls’ official downloads page, in the order they were released. I’ve titled them with where they were recorded, though the downloads page includes more specific informtation about the exact dates, venues, guest appearances and who recorded the audio.

1. Girl Anachronism (Live in Portland, OR)
2. Bad Habit (Live in Munich, Germany)
3. Two Headed Boy (Live in Cambridge, MA)
4. Gravity (Live in Munich, Germany)
5. Add It Up (Live in Boston, MA)
6. Backstabber (Live in Munich, Germany)
7. Mandy Goes To Med Shcool (Live in Brussels, Belgium)
8. Sorry Bunch (Live in New York, NY)
9. One (Live in New York, NY)
10. Half Jack (Live in Providence, RI)
11. Dance Me To The End of Love (Live in Boston, MA)
12. Modern Moonlight (Live in Knoxville, TN)
13. The Ghost In You (Live in Cambridge, MA)
14. Seven Nation Death Squad (Live in Boston, MA)
15. A Night at the Roses (Live in Boston, MA)
16. Blueprint (Live in Brooklyn, NY)
17. Life On Mars (Live in San Francisco, CA)
18. The Kill (Live in Boston, MA)
19. Colorblind (Live in Waltham, MA)
20. Ultima Esperanza (Live in Washington, DC)
21. Mother (Live in Portland, OR)
22. Cosmic Dancer (Live in Vienna, Austria)
23. Will (Live in Edinburgh, Scotland)
24. Umbrella (Live in Edinburgh, Scotland)
25. Girl Anachronism (Demo)
26. The Sheep Song (Live in Boston, MA)
27. God Damn the Sun (Live in Cambridge, MA)
28. Hate (Live in Boston, MA)
29. Karma Police (Live in San Diego, CA)
30. Science Fiction Double Feature (Live in Providence, RI)
31. Sing (Live in Munich, Germany)
32. Rid Of Me (Live in Portland, ME)
33. Train (Live in Boston, MA)
34. Imagine (Live in Cleveland, OH)

Map of Tasmania

Amanda Palmer (As A Solo Artist)

Amanda went solo in 2008, co-producing her first album, Who Killed Amanda Palmer, with musician Ben Folds, along with producing an art book with several writers, including Neil Gaiman, to whom she would later marry. She also took to referring to herself as Amanda Fucking Palmer, after having a falling out with her record company, who finally released her from her contract after fans protested them and she was allowed to release her music for free. She officially released two albums, as well as a lot of other EP’s and goodies.

Who Killed Amanda Palmer

Standard Album Cover

Who Killed Amanda Palmer
Released: September 16, 2008

1. Astronaut (A Short History Of Nearly Nothing)
2. Runs In The Family
3. Ampersand
4. Leeds United
5. Blake Says
6. Strength Through Music
7. Guitar Hero
8. Have To Drive
9. What’s The Use Of Wond’rin’?
10. Oasis
11. The Point Of It All
12. Another Year (A Short History Of Almost Something

Deluxe Edition Bonus Tracks

13. Straight (In The End)
14. Leeds United (Lounge Version)
15. Guitar Hero (Alternate Version)

Who Killed Amanda Palmer Deluxe

Special Edition Album Cover

Who Killed Amanda Palmer [Alternate Tracks]

Who Killed Amanda Palmer (Alternate Tracks)
Release Date: December 24, 2008

1. 1.1.94
2. The Point of It All
3. Night Reconnaissance
4. Runs in the Family
5. Blake Says
6. Strength Through Music
7. Guitar Hero (Note that this is NOT the alternate version on the Special Edition of Who Killed Amanda Palmer)
8. Boyfriend in a Coma
9. Oasis
10. You May Kiss The Bride
11. I Will Follow You into the Dark
12. Ampersand
13. Straight (with Strings)
14. Astronaut
15. Have to Drive

Amanda Palmer Performs The Popular Hits Of Radiohead On Her

Amanda Palmer Performs The Popular Hits Of Radiohead On Her Magical Ukulele
Released: July 20, 2010

1. Fake Plastic Trees
2. High And Dry
3. No Surprises
4. Idioteque
5. Creep (Hungover at Soundcheck in Berlin)
6. Exit Music (For A Film)
7. Creep (Live in Prague)

Amanda Palmer Goes Down Under

Amanda Palmer Goes Down Under
Release Date: January 21, 2011

1. Makin’ Whoopie
2. Australia
3. Vegemite (The Black Death)
4. Map of Tasmania (feat. The Young Punx)
5. In My Mind (feat. Brian Viglione)
6. Bad Wine and Lemon Cake (feat. The Jane Austen Argument)
7. New Zealand
8. On An Unknown Beach
9. We’re Happy Little Vegemites
10. Doctor Oz
11. Formidable Marinade (feat. Mikelangelo & Lance Horne)
12. The Ship Song

Singles

Who Killed Amanda Palmer [Neil Gaiman Reading]

Who Killed Amanda Palmer: Neil Gaiman Reading

1. Neil Gaiman Reading (feat. Zoë Keating & Lyndon Chester)

Do You Swear To Tell The Truth The Whole Truth And Nothing

Do You Swear To Tell The Truth The Whole Truth And Nothing But The Truth So Help Your Black Ass

1. Do You Swear To Tell The Truth The Whole Truth And Nothing But The Truth So Help Your Black Ass

Ukulele Anthem

Ukulele Anthem

1. Ukulele Anthem

Yes, Virginia

AFP Reading: Yes, Virginia (A Letter To The New York Sun, 1898)
(released online with the 2011 Christmas merchandise sale)

1. AFP Reading: Yes, Virginia (A Letter To The New York Sun, 1898)

Behavior [feat. Mat Devine, Erica Iozzo, and Caroline]

Behavior [feat. Mat Devine, Erica Iozzo, and Caroline]

1. Behavior [feat. Mat Devine, Erica Iozzo, and Caroline]

Dear Daily Mail

Dear Daily Mail (Live) [Official Bootleg]

1. Dear Daily Mail (Live)

The Thing About Things

The Thing About Things (Live) [Official Bootleg]

1. The Thing About Things (Live)

Here Comes The Rain Again

Here Comes The Rain Again
(released only on Soundcloud)

1. Here Comes The Rain Again (Eurythmics Cover)

Photo of Evelyn Evelyn

Evelyn Evelyn

In 2010, Amanda teamed up with fellow musician and friend Jason Webley to form an extremely weird band called Evelyn Evelyn, releasing one concept album in which the two play the characters of conjoined twin sisters, which they reported to be two real sisters who they had found and whose music they were attempting to promote to help spread their story. In the end, Evelyn Evelyn was actually just an act played by the two, but they kept the facade up on Amanda’s blog and during shows, in which they pretended to invite the sisters on stage and played songs in character after their respective individual shows. The album contains not only songs by the sisters but also three songs that consist of spoken dialogue and background music and sound effect detailing the twin sisters’ tragic lives. After the album and the tour, Evelyn Evelyn has never returned, although Amanda and Jason have played some of the songs on tour together and individually.

Bandcamp Album Cover, featuring artwork by Cynthia von Buhler

Bandcamp Album Cover, featuring artwork by Cynthia von Buhler

Evelyn Evelyn
Release Date: March 30, 2010

1. Evelyn Evelyn
2. A Campaign of Shock and Awe
3. The Tragic Events of September – Part I
4. Have You Seen My Sister Evelyn?
5. Chicken Man
6. The Tragic Events – Part II
7. Sandy Fishnets
8. Elephant Elephant
9. You Only Want Me ‘Cause You Want My Sister
10. The Tragic Events – Part III
11. My Space
12. Love Will Tear Us Apart

iTunes Album Cover

iTunes Album Cover

8in8

Amanda Palmer as a member of 8in8

In 2011, Amanda was set to attend a conference to discuss the state of music, and she decided that it would be more fun to that with friends, so she contacted Ben Folds, Neil Gaiman and Damien Kulash (of the band OK Go), and Ben proposed that rather than just appearing together, why not lock themselves into a studio and attempt to write and record eight completely original new songs in eigh hours? They did just that, only it took them twelve hours and they only produced six songs, but the results were pretty impressive nonetheless.


8in8

Nighty Night
Release Date: April 26, 2011

1. Nikola Tesla
2. Because the Origami
3. One Tiny Thing
4. Twelve Line Song
5. I’ll Be My Mirror
6. The Problem With Saints

Current Bandcamp Artwork

Amanda-Palmer-The-Grand-Theft-Orchestra

Amanda Palmer & The Grand Theft Orchestra

I believe it was at some point in 2011 that Amanda joined forces with musicians Jherek Bischoff, Michael McQuilken, and Chad Raines to create The Grand Theft Orchestra, and used the website Kickstarter to fund the album. The project met with incredible success, and I can say personally that I’ve only ever seen one Amanda Palmer album in stores, and it was this one. Kickstarter backers got a lot of extra tracks on their copies, which until recently were pretty much unobtainable, but Amanda recently released a “complete discography” download for free on her website, which includes the Kickstarter version of the album, containing all eight bonus tracks.

 

Physical Album Cover

Physical Album Cover

Theatre Is Evil
Release Date: September 11, 2012

1. Meow Meow Introduces The Grand Theft Orchestra
2. Smile (Pictures or It Didn’t Happen)
3. The Killing Type
4. Do It With A Rockstar
5. Want It Back
6. Grown Man Cry
7. Trout Heart Replica
8. A Grand Theft Intermission
9. Lost
10 .Bottomfeeder
11. The Bed Song
12. Massachusetts Avenue
13. Melody Dean
14. Berlin
15. Olly Olly Oxen Free

Bandcamp Bonus Tracks

16. Denial Thing
17. The Living Room
18. Ukulele Anthem (New version, not the same as the earlier single)
19. From St. Kilda To Fitzroy

Kickstarter Bonus Tracks

20. Video Games (Lana Del Ray cover)
21. Provanity
22. Assistant
23. Not Mine

Kickstarter Album Cover

Kickstarter Album Cover

 

Polly

 

Polly

 

1. Polly (Nirvana cover)

Amanda Palmer and Neil Gaiman

Amanda Palmer And Neil Gaiman

Amanda’s most recent foray has been a return to working as a solo artist, though she went on tour with her husband Neil Gaiman, performing something of a variety show that included music, readings, and question and answer segments from the audience. She released one album, and two live albums, the first of which consists of covers of Lou Reed and Velvet Underground songs, the second of which is included as a fourth disc on the final release of An Evening With Neil Gaiman And Amanda Palmer.

Lou Reed Surprises

Several Attempts To Cover Songs By The Velvet Underground & Lou Reed* For Neil Gaiman As His Birthday Approaches
Release Date: April 10, 2012

1. Attempt To Sing A Birthday Song / Lou Reed Misgivings
2. Satellite Of Love
3. Walk On The Wild Side
4. Another Birthday Song Attempt In Another Theater
5. I’m Waiting For The Moon
6. I’ll Be My Mirror
7. Vancouver Birthday Song Attempt
8. I’ll Be Your Mirror (feat. The Jane Austen Argument)
9. Sad Little Portland Birthday Song Attempt
10. Caroline Says II
11. Blake Says
12. I’m Sticking With You (feat. John Cameron Mitchell)
13. Perfect Day (Intro)
14. Perfect Day

An Evening With Neil Gaiman & Amanda Palmer (3-Disc Edition)

An Evening With Neil Gaiman & Amanda Palmer
Release Date: November 19, 2013

Disc 1

1. My Last Landlady
2. The Rhyme Maidens
3. The Day The Saucers Came
4. Feminine Endings
5. The Winter Gardens
6. In Relig Odhrain
7. The View From The Cheap Seats
8. I Will Write In Words Of Fire
9. The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury
10. Making A Chair
11. 100 Words

Disc 2

1. Margaret Cho introduces the Show
2. Makin’ Whoopee
3. (Introduction to The Problem with Saints)
4. The Problem with Saints
5. Jump (for Jeremy Geidt)
6. Ask Neil and Amanda
7. (Introduction to Broken Heart Stew)
8. Broken Heart Stew (by Amanda)
9. Poem for Amanda (by Neil)
10. Poem for Neil (by Amanda)
11. Electric Blanket (a duet, Amanda Palmer and Jason Webley)
12. Psycho
13. (Introduction to I Google You)
14. I Google You

Disc 3

1. I Want You, But I Don’t Need You
2. (Introduction to Dear Old House)
3. Dear Old House
4. (Introduction to Gaga, Palmer, Madonna; A Polemic)
5. Gaga, Palmer, Madonna; A Polemic
6. (Introduction to Judy Blume)
7. Judy Blume
8. I Don’t Care Much (with Lance Horne)
9. Map Of Tasmania
10. (Introduction to Do You Swear to Tell The Truth, The Whole Truth & Nothing But The Truth So Help Your Black Ass)
12. Do You Swear to Tell The Truth, The Whole Truth & Nothing But The Truth So Help Your Black Ass
13. (Introduction to I Will Follow You Into The Dark)
14. I Will Follow You Into The Dark (for Ashlie Gough)
15. Look Mummy, No Hands
16. Ukulele Anthem

Prelude To An Evening With Neil Gaiman And Amanda PalmerDisc 4
A Prelude To Evening With Neil Gaiman And Amanda Palmer

1. Intro
2. Ampersand
3. Runs in the Family
4. Shoggoth’s Old Peculiar
5. Blake Says
6. Forbidden Brides of the Faceless Slaves in the Secret House of the Night of Dread Desire
7. Do You Swear To Tell The Truth, The Whole Truth And Nothing But The Truth So Help Your Black Ass
8. Zombies and Shy People
9. Drinking with John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester
10. Making Mixtapes
11. Everyone Should Have a Hobby That Could Kill Them
12. It Was All Going So Well
13. On-Stage Dating Service

 

Amanda Palmer

Afterward

This is not a complete history of everything Amanda has ever done. On her band camp are some more releases: a collaboration with Kim Boekbinder, a collaboration with Murder By Death, a podcast of she and two friends discussing sexuality with an audience, and a really cool compilation called AFP’s Webcastacular NYC Extravaganza! that features songs from Kim Boekbinder, Bitter Ruin, and even a cover of Missed Me by Meow Meow and Lance Horne. Suffice it to say this is a compendium of mostly everything she has released as a solo artist and with bands that she was an active participant in. If you’ve never listened to Amanda, you should. If you’ve never heard her speak, you should listen to her TED Talk, or read about her life as a human statue, or her experience couch surfing in fans apartments while being on tour, or tweeting that she needs a ride to a show or that she’s welcoming any musicians who want to come and open for her. She’s a revolutionary: she embraces the idea that music and art are free for the taking,that if you like an artist, you should support them, and that decisions don’t have to be dictated by record companies whose main interest is in making money and not making art. She strips her clothes off on stage, she reveals her unshaven legs and armpits with pride, like everyone else she is sometimes terrifying and sometimes incredibly beautiful, and sometimes a little of both. She embraces her fans, she embraces the world around her, and she has been inspiring to me not just as an artist, but as a person. Carry on, Amanda.