This right here is Mark Eitzel. Back when I was just getting started in music people would see me and say “your performance reminds me of Mark Eitzel, you’re intense like he is!” and man oh man did I ever resent being compared to anybody, this is one of the many symptoms of Young Songwriter’s Disease, not everybody gets it but pig-headed dudes like me have to learn to accept kind comparisons with grace and gratitude instead of as an indictment of their originality or whatever. So I didn’t really get into Mark’s work until much later, but after I’d moved to North Carolina and made friends with people at Merge, I got handed a promo of their 2008 album The Golden Age, which leads off with a devastating song called “All My Love” and has one of the best mid-album triple-punch runs of the century so far: “All the Lost Souls Welcome You To San Francisco” followed by “Who You Are” and resolving on “The Windows on the World.” And I fell in love with Mark’s songs, and went back through the catalog, and sure enough, everybody’d been right all along, he walks with the giants. Merge is giving away a bunch of Merge artists covering other Merge artists for their 25th anniversary and when they asked us I knew “Who You Are” was the one for me. It is a song that I have turned to for comfort many times since I first heard it six years ago. Peter couldn’t get away, so that’s Brad Cook from Megafaun on bass here, along with me on piano and Jon Wurster on drums. We recorded at Overdub Lane with Scott Solter producing. It’s an honor to sing a song this good, this true; thanks for writing it, Mark & Vudi. I have tried to do justice by it. I’m going to attempt to make a link to the song here. My attempts to use HTML in Tumblr captions almost always fail hilariously so wish me luck.
I am loving the Mark Eitzel love today. This is a good cover.