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Sense of Place: Detroit –You Can’t Take The Detroit Out of Mayer Hawthorne

Mayer Hawthorne joins us for our Sense of Place Detroit and talks a bit about growing up in the environs of the Motor City.
Hawthorne has transformed himself from underground indie-soul curiosity to imminent star. Listen to the album and read the full review!

If you haven’t met Mayer Hawthorne, allow us to introduce you. How Do You Do is the second album from the Michigan born soul man who has one foot fully planted in a nostalgic world of Motown and the other very much in the now. The new album is his first for a major-label. Hawthorne released his independent debut, A Strange Arrangement, back in 2009 to the delight of critics. What we learned then was that along with a playful nature came a sincere desire to recapture the heart of the music he drew inspiration from. On How Do You Do, Hawthorne continues to pay homage to the music he loves, but all the while lending his own style to the equation.

Growing up just outside Detroit, Michigan, Mayer Hawthorne fell in love with the sound of soul music as a kid. Listening to old Motown classics on the radio inspired Hawthorne to not only embark on a music career of his own, but renovate the music he adored with a modern relevancy. On his new album, A Strange Arrangement, Hawthorne strikes that balance between then and now in stunning fashion.

Tracklist

Blitzen Trapper - "Black River Killer"
Neko Case - "People Gotta Lotta Nerve"
Death Cab for Cutie - "Little Bribes"
Dawes - "When My Time Comes"
Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears - "I'm Broke"
Mayer Hawthorne - "Just Ain't Gonna Work Out"
Moby - "Pale Horses"

When most people think of the best of jazz and soul, a skinny white kid from Ann Arbor, Michigan, is probably not the first thing that comes to mind. But Mayer Hawthorne (Andrew Mayer Cohen) is well on his way to changing that. With influences like Smokey Robinson, Curtis Mayfield, and the collaboration of Lamont Dozier, Brian Holland, and Eddie Holland Jr, Mayer has a retro sound that bespeaks a seasoned yet refreshing soul.

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