And, since you can [presumably] read, you've probably figured out that this month's artist is Janis Ian!
(This is Janis in 2008, I believe. When choosing an artist that's been active so long, it's hard to decide what decade to choose their photograph from. :P)
I cannot say enough what an extremely talented musician Janis Ian is. I've loved her for a couple years now (I posted another song of hers a while ago) but my Janis Ian listening experience was basically scattered songs here and there. Lately, however, I've been enjoying her album Between the Lines which was released in 1975 and became very popular, further kindling her re-emerged musical career which had started in the 60's and quieted somewhat since then.
No one's music pulls at my emotions like Janis Ian's does. Especially on this album. Her melodies, oh! Simply gorgeous, and almost always accompanied by beautiful string arrangements. And her voice! There are times it captures loneliness so well, not to mention her lyrics.
Best of all, she sings in a good key for me. (Always a huge bonus!)
Hands down, my all time favourite Janis Ian song is 'In the Winter.' It has been on my itunes' "Top 25 Most Played" for a looong time. It's also holds a pretty high status on my "Songs to Sing While Cleaning" list!
I'm not even going to try to describe why I love this song, just give it a listen.
And for your extended listening pleasure, if you so desire, I've included the song 'Jesse' which was not on Between the Lines but it's another Janis Ian original that just makes my heart weep. (Trivia: this song was also recorded by artists such as Joan Baez and Roberta Flack! Janis does it best, though.)