Nearly all the covers on Meiko’s Playing Favorites are faithful, albeit acoustic, reproductions. It’s just her gentle and subtle guitar playing and her understated, beautiful voice. This is a straightforward collection of what must be some of her favorite tunes. There are some tracks, like her cover of Ben E. King’s “Stand By Me,” where her voice is so low you have to strain to hear it under the standup bass accompanying her. Then there’s the surprising cover of Super Freak, where her slap-and-strum style moves the song from a funky wham bam thank you ma’am to a truly tender tale of gratitude and admiration.

But my absolute fave has to be her take on Erykah Badu’s deep track, “Bag Lady.”  It’s crushingly beautiful.

Lots of fun. Check it out.

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