Smooth Monday Jams: Canadian Edition

Hello! Kim Robinson here, one-half of the awesome party Sea Level that I put on with your regular scribe, Obey City.

For this week’s edition of Smooth Monday Jams, I’ve decided to take us on a journey northward to visit our pals in Canada. While some of the best smooth music has come from the states, there is no denying that the Canadians have a respectable catalog of smooth cuts. Here’s five songs that’ll tell you what some of our Canadian friends are aboot.

Dont forget: Sea Level has moved to Wednesdays at The Tender Trap, with the next party happening on March 6th! Come check us out and vibe to the smooth jams that will have you smiling throughout the rest of your week. Like Sea Level on Facebook to receive updates on our event

Destroyer – "Kaputt" (2011)

Dan Bejar of Destroyer excels at writing low-maintenance glam rock and indispensable smooth jams like the title cut from his album Kaputt. From the beginning of the track you know he means business with the filthy saxophone treatments sprinkled throughout. It’s a truly epic smooth jam that just keeps going on and on.

Feist – "One Evening" (2004)

Everyone knows Leslie Feist for the monster indie hit "1,2,3,4," but upon heavy inspection of her catalog we know that she’s a big fan of sultry R&B akin to Sade and Maxwell. Check this awesome video and song for this sleeper cut from the album Let It Die.

Gonzales – "Slow Down" (2008)

What can’t Gonzales do? Besides producing music for our previous artist Feist, he’s also worked with electroclash icon Peaches. On the side he plays amazing live solo piano recitals and records smooth jams for the intimate moments he’s created as a solo artist .

Joni Mitchell – "Coyote" (1976)  

You can’t go to Canada without visiting Joni. I’m a big fan of her early folk stuff, but have began to fully embrace her fusion-jazz work of the late ’70s. This track featuring the late, great bassist Jaco Pastorius was her first full jump into fusion, adding her beautiful vocals to a smooth jazzy landscape.


Drake – "Karaoke" (2010)


Produced by Sea Level fave Francis Starlight of "Francis & The Lights," this deep-cut was on Drake’s debut album, Thank Me Later. Over a smooth synth beat, Drake laments a lost love that doesn’t want the spotlight or attention of his new fame at the time. Sea Level would like to see more collaborations like this, especially when the results are this smooth. Thanks, Canada!

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Mister H & Mondrian Sessions Hit LA’s Sunset Strip

LA’s Sunset Strip used to be known as the home turf of bands like Guns N’ Roses and, god help us, Poison. These days, with hotels such as The London and Mondrian pulling the jet set to West Hollywood, a more sophisticated demographic stakes a claim to the famous boulevard. Accordingly, The Mondrian is raising its own nightlife stakes this year with two new initiatives. Over the weekend, Morgans Hotel Group debuted Mister H, a new pop up that might just take the place of ping pong-centric Spin Hollywood, which dominated the ground-level lobby in 2010.

Armin Amiri (Socialista, Bungalow 8) flew in from New York for the opening, which was timed to Oscar weekend in LA. Guests were given a taste of the flavor Amiri has already brought to the Mondrian’s new Soho property via his Mister H in Manhattan. In WeHo, Mia Moretti was on hand to spin a few nights at the new space, which isn’t yet fully designed, but already feels a step up from Spin Hollywood, with lush plants, dim lighting, and a vaguely bordello-esque vibe.

But the best reason to try to find a parking space on the Sunset Strip this spring is the hotel’s Mondrian Sessions. Presented by iAMSOUND Records, the live music series has snagged some fantastic talent to play poolside at the hotel’s Skybar, including Lykke Li and Canada’s Gonzales.

Already this year, acts such as the Dum Dum Girls (top image) and Zola Jesus have sent their sounds pinging off of the sleek glass rooftop exterior.

The best part? So long as you RSVP, all the shows are free. Information can be found here.

March is shaping up to be a very good month to drop by the hotel, and we highly suggest you check out Gonzales’ gig there next week. Rumor has it he’ll be bringing a special guest or two. If you know who his famous female musician friends are, you can probably guess who we’re talking about.