Lazerbeak, the Chalice, Motion City Soundtrack and lots more MN musicians give thanks

Alan Sparkhawk, Lazerbeak, Kevin Bowe, Chris Koza, Sophia Eris, Justin Pierre
Alan Sparkhawk, Lazerbeak, Kevin Bowe, Chris Koza, Sophia Eris, Justin Pierre

Regina Spektor put it best when she said, "Love what you have, and you'll have more love." Thanksgiving is a day reserved for finding what you are thankful for and immersing yourself in friends and family.

Dozens and dozens of local musicians took the time to speak to Gimme Noise about what they are appreciative of this holiday season, including the songs that they are most grateful for.

See Also:
Actual Wolf is thankful for the Minnesota music scene and that he's not in jail

Kieren Smith of Little Bombs

What I'm thankful for: Loud music.

What song I am thankful for: "Rocket" by The Smashing Pumpkins.


Kevin Bowe of Kevin Bowe + The Okemah Prophets, Alison Scott, & Freedy Johnston

What I'm thankful for: This Thanksgiving I'm thankful that the anti-marriage amendment didn't pass, that the anti-voting rights amendment didn't pass, that Obama won, that the Mpls. Electric Fetus is such a cool place to shop, that Noiseland is such a great place to have CDs pressed, that Magneto Mastering does such a great job on the records I make, that the Dakota has been such a great venue to play, that I'm getting along with all the people at the Current, that I'm getting along with all the people at City Pages and Chris R at the Strib, that Guild made such cool guitars in the '60s and '70s, that Alison Scott had such an amazing year and I got to play so many gigs with her, that Peter Anderson and Steve Price are in the Okemah Prophets and I'm damn lucky to have 'em, that we got to play gigs backing up Freedy Johnston, that MN Original is such a cool show, that Terrarium and Flower are such cool studios, that Rock The Cause has been a source of so much fun, that I got to play with Paul Westerberg and Tommy Stinson for an afternoon, that I really dig Sonia at First Ave. even though I haven't played there in a while, that Johnny from Communist Daughter makes me laugh so hard, that Chris Koza is so cool, that Ruth played on my record and that I live in Minneapolis.

What song I am thankful for: "Rolling In The Deep" by Adele. So nice to hear something on the radio that has real soul. A rare and beautiful thing.


Mike Fisher

What I'm thankful for: An unconditionally loving family, my health and well being, all of my amazing friends, opportunities at every corner, warm socks, a positive outlook on every situation, my two cats and my pug, and a roof over my head and heat that goes along with it in the winter.

What song I am thankful for: "Elementary School" by Segun


Koo Koo Kanga Roo

What I'm thankful for: Holiday shaped Kraft Mac n Cheese.

What song I am thankful for: "Kiss You" by One Direction and "Get Down" by P.O.S.


Katy Vernon

What I'm thankful for: I am thankful for my husband and children. Secondly I am thankful to be singing again and playing with musicians I respect and am inspired by.

What song I am thankful for: "Imagine." Favorite song and favorite word. I wear that word on a necklace every day.


Alan Sparhawk of Low/Retribution Gospel Choir/Murder of Crows

What I'm thankful for: My family, freedom, a job.

What song I'm thankful for: "Desperate Youth" by Santigold


David Priebe of Maudlin

What I'm thankful for: I'm thankful for the baby on the way, and that I somehow pulled together the Maudlin Presents: The 4th Annual Worst Christmas Pageant Ever again! (Dec 7th, 9PM Amsterdam Hall)

What song I'm thankful for: "One Woman Army" by Kate's about babies.


Claire de Lune of The Chalice

What I'm thankful for: So incredibly thankful to be doing what I love every day surrounded by talented and genuine people I love and respect.

What song I'm thankful for: "Thinking About You" by Frank Ocean and this whole new wave of cool, dark R&B in general -- for inspiring me while writing my next record!


Ryan Truax of Vision the Kid & Tru Present

What I'm thankful for: We're thankful for having a platform from which we can create, and distribute our art to our fans. Also, good health, and the continually inspiring Twin Cities culture.

What song I'm thankful for: "Imagine" by John Lennon. A timeless message paired with serenading melodies, still raises the hair on our arms.


Lizzo of The Chalice

What I'm thankful for: Thankful for the fact I get to see my family and my mommys food, my first thanksgiving with them in forever!

What song I'm thankful for: "good kid" and "m.A.A.d city," so I can say "Lizzo have a DREAM!"

Elliott Kozel of Sleeping in the Aviary

What I'm thankful for: Charlie Wilson

What song I'm thankful for: "Untitled (How Does It Feel)" by D'Angelo.


The Sunny Era

What we're thankful for: All of the compassionate people and all of the beautiful animals in our lives. Having the privilege to create music and share if with our friends, family, and fans. The plethora of Taco Bell locations found throughout the USA, an unlikely but lifesaving meal option for a group of touring vegan musicians who often find themselves on the road and hungry.

What song we're thankful for: "The World Spins" by Julee Cruise.


Mike Dreams

What I'm thankful for: I'm thankful for the beautiful people around me and in my life right now. Age 23 was quite a crazy year, and I'm hoping this new year of life is much more stable and successful for me. I'm thankful for still being alive, second chances, and the faith and optimism I still have.

What song I'm thankful for: "A Change Gon' Come" by Sam Cooke. That still continues to be my favorite song of all-time, and helped me a lot recently during this seasonal transition. The message stands all time.


Jim of Farewell Continental

What I'm thankful for: Skylar the cat.

What song I'm thankful for: "3 Sisters" by Puerto Rico Flowers.


The Word Party

What we're thankful for: We're thankful for gasoline, camaraderie, James Brown, and being lucky enough to play music together.

What song we're thankful for: "Atlantic City" by the Boss.

Danny O'Brien of The Farewell Circuit

What I'm thankful for: Family, health, friends, and hope.

What songs I'm thankful for: "As I Lay My Head Down" by Other Lives and "Hollow Heel" by Actual Wolf.


Seth Davin of American Scarecrows

What I'm thankful for: I'm thankful for being in a band with two of my favorite musicians of all time. Matt and Allen are a dream rhythm section to play with. Their unrelenting hunger to create, destroy, and improve is contagious. I would not be the same musician without their guidance. Most importantly they are great, and trustworthy friends. I love them dearly, and am fortunate to have them in my life.

What song I'm thankful for: "Political Science" by Randy Newman. A sharp, clever, sarcastic song about America. Mr. Newman is one of my favorite songwriters, who has mastered the art of the "simple tune." My middle school jazz band teacher Mr. Miller always said, "Less is more," which is wonderful advice for any musician in my opinion. I have tried to adopt that with the Scarecrows. Randy Newman has been an influence for me in that right. "Political Science" is also the only song I can play on the piano.


Alison Scott

What I'm thankful for: My family (especially my soon-to-be baby girl), my career, and pie.  I am pregnant after all.

What song I'm thankful for: "Don't Play That Song" by Aretha Franklin.


Dan Choma of Emot

What I'm thankful for: My loves ones, my bikes, and my tambourines.

What songs I'm thankful for: "U-Love," "Hi," and "Bye" by J. Dilla.



What I'm thankful for: Aside from the more obvious stuff like health and food and shelter, I'm thankful to live in a community full of people who push back against the traditional Thanksgiving narrative. While a day to give thanks is a beautiful thought, it's hard not to look at the way we're taught about Thanksgiving-- Pilgrims and Indians and peaceful co-existence and all that-- and not see a whitewashed, thoroughly idealized version of this country's real, much more brutal, history. The Twin Cities have a proud history of Native and non-Native activists working to bring the true narrative to light, and I'm thankful for that.

What song I'm thankful for: With all that stuff in mind, I want to point out a specific verse. A few years ago, Doomtree's Sims released an album called "Lights Out Paris." On the song "Frontline," there's a guest verse from Crescent Moon (of Kill the Vultures), where he just completely blacks out and addresses a bunch of the stuff I was just talking about. I think it's one of the finest single verses in Twin Cities hip hop history.


Lisa Hirst Carnes

What I'm thankful for: I'm thankful for my well-balanced, full life. My health, my family, music, art, my friends, my work. Getting to know my brother better.

What songs I'm thankful for: "Default" by Atoms for Peace, "After You" by Chastity Brown, "Bad Reputation" by Haley Bonar, "Drama Queen" by A. Wolf & Her Claws, and "Sleeping Ute" by Grizzly Bear.


Jeff Crandall of Swallows

What I'm thankful for: Minnesota, Colorado and Washington voters!

What song I'm thankful for: "Reconsider Baby" by Lowell Fulson.


Michael Ferrier of Fathom Lane

What I'm thankful for: It was an amazing year, getting back into the business of creating again with both new and old friends. I'm thankful for the gift of music, and also thankful for the revival of vinyl. It seems there are some listeners who value the experience of music so much that they might actually sit down and get lost for a while, rather than relegating it to a background noise lifestyle extension.

What song I'm thankful for: I hate having to pick one, but today it's "God Only Knows" by the Beach Boys. I'm thankful they weren't afraid to do something so gorgeous instead of cool and hip.


The Parlour Suite

What we're thankful for: At this moment we are eating at Vanessa's Dumpling House in NYC... thankful for dim sum! 

What song we're thankful for: "Free" by Prince.


Justin Pierre of Motion City Soundtrack

What I'm thankful for: I am thankful for having the most kick ass special lady friend/girlfriend/superhero/partner in crime who puts up with my shenanigans and tomfoolery, and somehow finds my idiosyncratic quirks (and there are many) charming.

What song I'm thankful for: I am currently most thankful for Tom Waits' "Last Leaf" from Bad As Me.


Craig Minowa of Cloud Cult

What I'm thankful for: I'm thankful to be a dad again and to be in love. Our new baby girl is a beautiful and peaceful girl, and our son is becoming a great big brother.

What song I'm thankful for: Our three-year-old made up a song the other day that is just the words "I love you, love you, love you..." over and over again. It's my favorite new song of 2012.


Mary Bue

What I'm thankful for: My delightful and adventurous fiance (Kyle Maclean - wedding 8/13!), supportive family (Grandma Betty - rest in peace - 1922 - 2012!), health (able body and relatively sound mind) and Lake Superior. I'm thankful for local print media,  too

What songs I'm thankful for: I'm obsessed with two songs lately.  "Shadows Casting Trees" by Luna Moth, a band out of Norman, Oklahoma. Here's the last verse,  hung together by the simple finger picking of an acoustic guitar: "We are spun together by the fiber of a spider, so melodic, symbiotic, so serene and mystic."

"Safe" by Canyon Country, a band that can be found on Attacknine Records, but seems to have floated into obscurity otherwise. The song is called "Safe" and it envelopes me in this slow guitar swirl that feels like November coming on like a heavy blanket, lulling me into more internal spaces.



Mary Jane Alm

What I'm thankful for: I'm thankful that I get to do what I love the most for a living: music, and for so many years!! That's everything!!

What song I'm thankful for: "A Case of You" by Joni Mitchell. My favorite song if I had to pick one.


Luke Redfield

What I'm thankful for: Peace of mind.

What song I'm thankful for: "Mississippi" by Bob Dylan.


Sophia Eris of The Chalice

What I'm thankful for: I'm thankful for my friends that are my family, and my family that are my friends.

What song I'm thankful for: "B*tch Don't Kill My Vibe" by Kendrick Lamar. It's my jam of the month that speaks for my soul.


Paul Doffing

What I'm thankful for: My twelve-string guitar.

What song I'm thankful for: "Reminiscing in Tempo" by Duke Ellington.


Marvel Devitt of Southside Desire

What I'm thankful for: I'm grateful for the health of my family and friends, and for everything that my grandparents have taught me about being an honest and decent person.

What song I'm thankful for: "Family Affair" by Sly and the Family Stone.


Jon Reine of Greycoats

What I'm thankful for: Our fevered electioneering is presently behind us, the current low interest rates on home mortgage loans, and an altruistic future filled with ironic goatees.

What song I'm thankful for: "Make Like Paper" by Red House Painters. A perfect guitar solo from a perfect fall album.


Sara Horishnyk of Bethany Larson & The Bee's Knees

What I'm thankful for: I am thankful that I am surrounded by inspiring and supportive friends and family.

What song I'm thankful for: There are too many great songs to choose just one.  I'm thankful that there is a diverse range of genres and styles to listen to.



What I'm thankful for: The usual generic answer, but it really is the truth: amazing friends and family, the addition of our first child this year, Team The Best Team, and the opportunity to make music for a living. Oh, and Mike's Hard Raspberry Lemonade. Year of the Endorsement Deal Forever!!!

What song I'm thankful for: "Outstanding" by The Gap Band.  Possibly the most feel good song of all the times ever.


Casey Call of Enemy Planes

What I'm thankful for: Tequila, your mom, and of course, world peace.

What song I'm thankful for: "Ballad of Bilbo Baggins" by Leonard Nimoy (Youtube it).


Awkward Bodies

What we're thankful for: Mason is thankful for the vast unstoppable musical resource that is the internet. It allows the band to plunder any imaginable influence and still be a relatively straight-forward indie rock outfit. Jeannette is thankful for20 new chapters of R Kelly's Trapped In The Closet Saga.Jesse is thankful there is no password on the neighbor's wi-fi. Nick is thankful that we don't make him answer public questions and subject him to scrutiny.

What song we're thankful for: Jeannetteis thankful for "Pregnant" by R. Kelly.Jesse is thankful for "Dream Away" by George Harrison. Mason is thankful for "Every Word Means No" by Let's Active.


Linnea Mohn of Rogue Valley and A. Wolf and Her Claws

What I'm thankful for: I am thankful for really having gotten everything I've ever wanted even though I didn't always realize it at the time: a creative freelance job, amazing and inspirational friendships, all the basics: good food, clean water, shelter, warmth and two stupid cats. And I'm also really grateful for the defeat of the two stupid amendments that were on the ballot in MN this year.

What song I'm thankful for: "Why Does the Sun Shine" by They Might Be Giants.


Ben Kyle

What I'm thankful for: Breath.

What song I'm thankful for: "Playing with Fire" by Brandon Flowers.


Paul Engels of Rogue Valley

What I'm thankful for: I'm thankful for Sean Connery, Roger Moore, Daniel Craig, and Pierce Brosnan. (And, I guess, George Lazemby and Timothy Dalton.)

What song I'm thankful for: "War Pigs" by Black Sabbath.


Chris Koza of Rogue Valley

What I'm thankful for:  I'm thankful for compassionate people; for those who have shown generosity towards me and taught me how to better share with others. Also for Damian Lillard being drafted by the Portland Trailblazers.

What song I'm thankful for: It's a classic from a couple years ago: "Young Bride" by Midlake.


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