KCRW Exclusive: Jenny O Covers Harry Nilsson – “1941”

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Whether they know it or not, most everyone knows Harry Nilsson thanks to his pop hits “Everybody’s Talkin’” (1969), “Without You” (1971) and the quirky “Coconut” OR his friendship/wild antics with John Lennon.

(Both explored in a documentary well worth watching called “Who Is Harry Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin’ About Him)?”)

But I really became acquainted with the wonder of Harry Nilsson thanks to a show I produce at KCRW called the Guest DJ Project, where various creative folks picks 5 songs they love.

Actor Jason Schwartzman chose “Me and My Arrow” as a tribute to his dog. How I’d never heard that song before I have no idea, but I was instantly enamored. Later on, Flight of the Conchords’ Bret McKenzie picked “Think About Your Troubles”, also from Nilsson’s album “The Point”. (Comedians Kate Micucci and Tim Heidecker picked Nilsson songs too!)

Now, 20 artists have contributed covers to a collection called “This Is The Town: A Tribute to Nilsson (Volume One”)” being released by the Brooklyn label Royal Potato Family and endorsed by Nilsson’s family.

It includes KCRW faves like Langhorne Slim and Willy Mason, alongside Harry’s own daughter Annie with a great rendition of “Gotta Get Up”.

Former Angeleno Jenny O (who I believe is now calling Nashville home, hopefully temporarly!) took on Nilsson’s autobiographical track “1941” and did a beautiful job with it. We’re happy to premiere the track.

Stream: Jenny O — “1941”

The complete track listing:

1. Langhorne Slim – Early In The Morning
2. Dawn Landes – You’re Breakin’ My Heart
3. Low Cut Connie – Jump Into The Fire
4. Jenny O – 1941
5. The Mommyheads – Me and My Arrow
6. Annie Nilsson – Gotta Get Up
7. Blueberry – Poli High
8. Willy Mason – Think About Your Troubles
9. Yellowbirds – Rainmaker (Nilsson /Martin)
10. Johanna Warren – Without Her
11. The Wiyos – Nobody Cares About The Railroads Anymore
12. Rasputina – Sweethaven
13. Church of Betty – Without You
14. Marco Benevento – Are You Sleeping?
15. Tracy Bonham – Everybody’s Talkin’ (Fred Neil)
16. Stellacutta – Everything’s Got ‘Em
17. Brian Dewan – Coconut
18. Johnny Society – Mr. Richland’s Favorite Song
19. Mamie Minch – Don’t Forget Me
20. Josh Kaufman – I Said Goodbye to Me