Sea Cliff-based performer Roger Street Friedman’s musical roots stretch back to the era of 1970s-era singer-songwriters, which is perfectly reflected on his recently released sophomore bow, Shoot the Moon. The following are a few of his favorite artists and influences.
“I love his lyrics and his storytelling and his use of metaphor. He has a great voice and really knows how to craft a song.”
“Paul Simon is my touchstone. I think he’s one of the greatest ever. I always think about that line from ‘My Little Town.’ ‘And after it rains there’s a rainbow/And all of the colors are black/It’s not that the colors aren’t there/It’s just imagination that they lack.’ You feel like just giving up [as a songwriter], but it’s also inspiring. How much more descriptive can you be about a little dying town.”
“His solo stuff is amazing as is his storytelling. He’s not singing as much anymore and is really narrating. It’s more cinematic. Those [solo] records came out in the 1980s and 1990s. The production and mixing I think was Bob Clearmountain. I love that aspect of it. Robbie wrote some of the most iconic songs in the American songbook. There’s of course that whole dispute between him and Levon [Helm] in terms of who wrote what, which is really sad.”
“She really gets to the heart of the matter and she has a really beautiful and unique voice and she’s an incredible storyteller. Her use of melody and harmony with her guitar playing is really cool. And I love the sound of her records when she’s worked with producer John Leventhal.”