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I can't make you know me
February 18, 2012 6:31 AM   Subscribe

After he beat out some popular dance music favorites to win a Best New Artist Grammy last week, many asked Who Is Bon Iver? Some, confused further, asked Who Is Bonnie Bear? Parents everywhere answered: Um, THIS is Bonnie Bear. Fortunately, all this confusion has had a charming result. All the while, Bon Iver has blithely been making music. Yesterday Justin Vernon released a live video of him and frequent BI contributor Sean Carey rocking two minimalist pianos on some old favorites and a brand new cover of Bonnie Rait's "I Can't Make You Love Me".

Bon Iver (and friends) Previously

"Who is that Grammy winner" Previously
posted by Potomac Avenue (35 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
I liked the part where Adele was treated as some elder stateswoman and BI got best new artist, despite them both releasing their first, critically acclaimed, albums in 2008.
posted by Threeway Handshake at 7:01 AM on February 18, 2012 [8 favorites]


Bon Iver new my ass...I saw him live in 2007 and I'm not cutting edge on that kind of music.
posted by schyler523 at 7:08 AM on February 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Reminds me on when Green Day one best new artists after Dookie came out, which was their third or fourth album.
posted by holdkris99 at 7:08 AM on February 18, 2012


His girlfriend is no slouch in the music department!
posted by thinkpiece at 7:21 AM on February 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


Didn't know that thinkpiece, she is indeed great too.

Pretty into any and all divorce rock right now. Click that Bonnie Rait song above and compare--nothing said regrets like 40-somethings making music in the mid-late 80s.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 7:37 AM on February 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


As a guy in his thirties that shops at Kohls, I'm getting a kick out of those Twitter comments.
posted by greasy_skillet at 7:43 AM on February 18, 2012


In case you want to be into the next breakout band from Wisconsin instead of the last breakout band from Wisconsin, I recommend Yellow Ostrich (big loopy indie from Appleton) and Milwaukee's Sat. Nite Duets (post-Pavement party music, I guess?)
posted by escabeche at 7:43 AM on February 18, 2012 [4 favorites]


(a small sidenote: one of the nominees graduated high school with one of my kids. )

I liked the BI interview, but yeah, what's up with him winning with a debut album in 2008?
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 7:44 AM on February 18, 2012


The Who Is Bon Iver tumblr notes that Bon Iver is up for a Brit Award... in the solo artist category? Guys. GUYS.
posted by mendel at 7:51 AM on February 18, 2012


I loved how out of place Justin Vernon looked at the Grammys with his professorial jacket and comb-over.
posted by octothorpe at 8:01 AM on February 18, 2012



Pretty into any and all divorce rock right now.


Well, then you must visit the X thread from a day or so ago! OG divorce rock!
posted by thinkpiece at 8:14 AM on February 18, 2012


Richmond, VA's own Reggie Pace, the multi-instrumentalist on stage left, is a bit of a local legend.
posted by emelenjr at 9:13 AM on February 18, 2012


Threeway Handshake: I liked the part where Adele was treated as some elder stateswoman and BI got best new artist, despite them both releasing their first, critically acclaimed, albums in 2008.

The Grammys: About as Current as Your Stereotypical 55-year-old Parents.

"Hey, this Bonnybear guy is pretty good! In fact, it's the best new stuff I've heard in a while!"
"Dad, It's Bon Iver, and I saw him live in 2007. I played his last album for you, and you just shrugged your shoulders."
"Oh, that's a weird name. But this Bonnybear makes some good music. Yessir, he gets my vote as best new musician. "
posted by filthy light thief at 9:14 AM on February 18, 2012


filthy light thief, your 55 year old sounds like an 85 year old in an old movie with his ear up to the radio. I heartily protest.
posted by thinkpiece at 9:20 AM on February 18, 2012


"What about this Chris Brown fellow? The kids like him, right? He's got that urban vibe that's so hip these days."
"Dad, you Grammy guys pulled him from the 2009 events because he tried to kill Rihanna."
"He did? Damn. But he got punished, and he's a free man now, right? And the kids like him?"
"A lot of people still think he's a monster, and think his punishment was a joke."
"OK, but he got his come-uppance. Maybe he and that Rihanna girl can do a duet. I like duets."
"Fuck it, I'm out of here."

Yeah, I'm leaning heavily on the "stereotypical" notion, and my "artistic license"
posted by filthy light thief at 9:24 AM on February 18, 2012


Hey, I'm close to that age and knew who Bon Iver was (mostly via NPR's All Songs Considered but still).
posted by octothorpe at 9:25 AM on February 18, 2012


Bon Iver, I could take or leave, but Kathleen Edwards is so, so great.
posted by defenestration at 9:49 AM on February 18, 2012


I must confess I was confused by the Bonnie Bear comments. Until recently, I had read of Bon Iver, had heard Bon Iver's music, but had never heard the name said out loud.

I always read it with a long I. Bon Iver.

Apparently Mr. Mustachio thought the same; he was confused by the Bonnie Bear jokes until one of his coworkers corrected him. " It's pronounced Bon Ee - vare!" she said. She's really nice and I am sure she hardly laughed at him at all.

That's what happens when you mostly talk about music on the internet.
posted by louche mustachio at 10:03 AM on February 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Phew. That version of I Can't Make You Love Me is raw as fuck. Goosebumps.
posted by lazaruslong at 10:17 AM on February 18, 2012


Yeah, I and most of my friends mispronounced it for about a year after For Emma came out. That live set up there is indeed awesome. Bon Iver was the best show I saw last year. Having said that, I'm mostly just so glad he exposed me to I Can't Make You Love Me because goddamn, that is a song.
posted by saul wright at 10:24 AM on February 18, 2012


Great link. Haven't finished, but the live set is awesome so far. Also, I fucking love that it's 2012 and 4AD is still awesome and relevant.
posted by en forme de poire at 10:29 AM on February 18, 2012


Yeah, 4AD sessions are awesome. Here's a couple I've put on my blog, but there's a ton of good ones out there.
posted by saul wright at 10:35 AM on February 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


One of my favorite 4AD sessions. Tune-Yards live is what's up.
posted by defenestration at 11:04 AM on February 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


I feel like I listened to "I Can't Make You Love Me" at least 4000 times in my late teens. (Between sessions of Counting Crows and R.E.M.) This version is pretty good but it just doesn't get better than Bonnie Raitt. Listening to her version just now and I'm feeling like I'm 17 again.
posted by kmz at 11:23 AM on February 18, 2012


I've tried to like Bon Iver many times and have failed each time. I give up.
posted by thorny at 11:57 AM on February 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


I always read it with a long I. Bon Iver.

ohhhhh so THAT is what is going on here.
posted by Mars Saxman at 12:17 PM on February 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Love the AIR Studio video. Cheers.
posted by flippant at 1:21 PM on February 18, 2012


Any chance any of this live session is available for download? I have the studio version of his cover of "I Can't Make You Love Me," but this is my favorite by far. Thanks for the link!
posted by yasaman at 3:42 PM on February 18, 2012


I'm really out of touch with music, so this is the first time I've ever seen or heard of him. Fantastic stuff. 2nding the appreciation for 4AD's longevity.
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 5:29 PM on February 18, 2012


Since I have a tendancy to read endless amounts of praise, critical frothing, and inevitable backlash before ever actually listening to an artist.. when I finally listened to Bon Iver, I was horribly disappointed. Between all the hyperbole spouted by various blogs and print media, none of which was the least bit helpful as to what it actually sounded like.. ultra sensitive falsetto folk that was indistinguishable from any other ultra sensitive falsetto folk (see: Wine, and Iron; Foxes, Fleet) wasn't really what I was expecting
posted by mediocre at 5:45 PM on February 18, 2012


A while ago I knit a hat for Justin Vernon. He wore it in the photos on the inner sleeve of Blood Bank.
posted by pxe2000 at 5:47 PM on February 18, 2012 [7 favorites]


Just wait 'til next year when Bon Iver takes home the Grammy for Best Metal Performance.
posted by delfin at 5:55 PM on February 18, 2012


"...heard of them." Them! Christ on a bike, don't ever let me post after having multiple glasses of wine.
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 6:28 PM on February 18, 2012


Google the Jian Ghomeshi interview with Bon Iver. I'd link to it if I wasn't on this stupid little device right now . Anyway it's quite an endearing interview that includes quite a lovely live performance. I was not at all familiar with this person until Jian introduced me.
posted by ThatCanadianGirl at 8:18 PM on February 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


I totally meant to get work done tonight but for the past 24:44 I've been alternately gazing into the middle distance and linking the video everywhere I can possible link it. bon iver is transcendent. thank you for this.
posted by changeling at 8:29 PM on February 18, 2012


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