The next time you catch a performance by an artist, make sure to look behind them–at the back-up singers. Countless back-up singers (Paula Cole and St. Vincent to name a few) have a lot more talent than they are allowed to showcase in their day jobs. Take Merrill Garbus, the genius behind tUnE-yArDs. She’s a performance artist (have you been to a show? It’s an event you won’t want to miss), an artist (face paint counts in our book), musician and overall “knock-one-out-of-the-park” singer. And recently, Ms. Garbus has lent her vocals to a cover of the traditional song “Careless Love,” that has been performed by legends like Bessie Smith (btw, check out “Dinah Washington Sings Bessie Smith” if haven’t already). You can hear the song, which appears on the new album from the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, on the NPR’s Fall Music Preview.
DDR caught her show at Paradise last year. Prepare to have your mind blown: