Out of the Chicago area comes Overman, whose props-to-Darwin song "Evolution Rocks" has the endorsement of the National Science Teachers Association and has been used as a teaching supplement in classrooms. The song is somewhere near the They Might Be Giants ballpark, with a bit of an added-jam band feel. The band members share a five-bedroom farmhouse in Joliet, Illinois, and sound a bit zany, but this is fun music from start to finish.
Overman - Evolution Rocks
Overman - Princess
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Maybe it's just the Canadian connection, but I hear a bit of Feist in Amanda Zelina. But given her soulful, moody vocals, it's a reasonable comparison. On her Web site, the 22-year old cites Joni Mitchell, Janis Joplin and Tom Waits as influences. Zelina is prepping her debut album, Love Me Till I’m Me Again.
Amanda Zelina - Obsessed
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Ryan Smith is a singer-songwriter from Columbus, Ohio, who blends acoustic guitar, piano and a laid-back, easy rhythm on songs that give the focus to his thought-provoking lyrics. Smith has a load of music available for free download at RyanSmithOnline.com.
Ryan Smith - Santa Cruz
Ryan Smith - Girl With The Glasses