Tuesday, April 21, 2009

SING THE STATES #13: Rhode Island

Rhode Island is first and foremost, not an island. Technically "Rhode Island & Providence Plantations", it was the first of the original 13 colonies to declare independence from Britain, but the last to ratify the Constitution. Thus, it ended up as number 13 on our list. The capital of Rhode Island is Providence, and here's a few firsts that Providence can boast: the first Baptist church in America was established there in 1638, the first motion-picture machine was patented there in 1867, and the first lunch wagon was introduced there in 1872. Now we all know those things.

The song for Rhode Island is actually a live recording of "Holiday in Rhode Island" by The Softies, recorded in Boston in 2000. The Softies (which is actually the duo of Rose Melberg and Jen Sbragia) originally released this song on an album of the same name - but sadly haven't put out anything since. They still have 4 great twee-pop records to explore for anyone who's interested. I chose this live version of this song instead of the studio one mostly because of the somewhat-adorable interaction between the band and the crowd at the end. It's also almost a minute longer than the studio version (mostly because of said banter - but still). Enjoy!

Also considered: Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Providence; Jennifer O'Connor - Exeter, Rhode Island

The Softies - Holiday in Rhode Island (live)
original appears on the album Holiday in Rhode Island (iTunes)

Check out the rest of our SING THE STATES posts!

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