I’ll Never Get Out of This World Alive, by Steve Earle

At a book signing, Steve Earle was speaking when someone leaned on a light switch and the windowless room went dark. "Did I die?" Earle asked in a quiet voice.

Tell My Sister, by Kate & Anna McGarrigle

The McGarrigle sisters (Kate died of sarcoma last year) were more successful in their native Canada than in the States, but they were deeply admired by those who covered their songs: Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt, Maria Muldaur, Kate's son Rufus Wainwright.

Night of Hunters, by Tori Amos

While it's hard to imagine many pop artists signing up to write a song cycle based on the history of classical music, for Amos—whom  Deutsche Grammophon approached with this idea—the project seems almost inevitable.

4x4, by Works Progress Administration

Works Progress Administration is a loose collective of a supergroup, primarily a collaboration between Glen Phillips and Sean Watkins.

C’mon, by Low

The usually pejorative term slowcore was coined to describe Low's general minimalism and especially the glacial pace at which the Duluth, Minnesota, trio's songs develop. But patient listeners have always been rewarded with warm guitar sounds, memorable tunes and sweet harmony.