About Austin KruegerAustin works as a cost analyst for TDS Telecom in the Government and Regulatory Affairs team. He has a marketing degree from UW-Whitewater and has worked in various departments including marketing, sales and network services since joining TDS in 2004. He is a huge sports fan – if he’s not at work, odds are you can find him at Miller Park, Lambeau Field, Camp Randall or the Kohl Center watching the game. In his spare time, he’s chairman of a local non-profit, avid music fan, rec sports MVP and an early adopter when it comes to most new technologies.
You probably remember Macy Gray from her hit song, "I Try" but today's featured album is her sixth studio effort. "Covered," which you can probably guess, is an album of all covers. Covers are a much underutilized tool in the business today and Gray is able to take songs like “Nothing Else Matters” by Metallica and turn it into a super funky, soulful track. Or a staple like “Creep” by Radiohead and make it sound nearly original. For $5, you can rediscover her unique vocal style and score a great album to boot.
Simon and Garfunkel seem to be one of those bands where you remember where you were and what you were doing when you first heard them. Tracks like “The Sound of Silence” or “Mrs. Robinson” are so iconic even to this day; it’s hard to not be aware of the classic duo. Their sound evolved a bit over the years to shed the folk rock label, but there is no denying their place in music history because of their original stuff. Well worth $5 bucks for sure, but also worth your hour today.
Their mix of southern rock and blues is often imitated but never duplicated. When a Skynyrd tune comes on the radio, you have no doubt who it is. When "Second Helping" hit the charts so soon after their first album, critics were looking for a reason to shoot it down—but they couldn't. “Sweet Home Alabama” helped drive this album to #12 on the charts and the band to a place in music history.
If last week’s post was capitalizing on the mainstream of the moment, today’s blog and artist would be nearly the polar opposite. We’ve all probably heard some of the songs made by today’s featured act, but he’s certainly not a household name. The track “Coconut” is one I think just about everyone knows, but don't be fooled by the novelty of it—the whole album is great blend of original production and writing.
Lady Gaga has been making toe-tapping music with substance for almost a decade, and her staying power has shown by her recent appearances on the biggest stages—from the Super Bowl to the Grammys in under 10 days time. Today you can score her second album for only $5.
If you've seen the Apple Airpods commercial where a guy does some awesome dancing while walking down the street, you've heard today's artist—well, artists. The group's name is Marian Hill, a duo who is making some cool R&B-meets-electric music. Since new tunes are always fun to listen to, and cheap new music is almost unheard of, you should check this $5 album out today.
Bush’s debut album Sixteen Stone was released on December 6th of 1994. An advance copy was sent to an influential Los Angeles radio station which added lead single “Everything Zen” to its rotation. The rest, as they say, is history. The album would peak at #4 on the Billboard Charts and spawn two Top 40 Singles. Today you can get this chart-topper for only $5.
Astro Lounge was Smash Mouth’s first album with a switch in sound—a decision completely worth it. The album would go on to spawn a few monster singles, being used in major films such as “Shrek” and in heavily viewed commercials for companies such as Nissan. Even the critics almost unanimously agreed this was one of the better albums of the year, praising the laid-back sound with a mass appeal. Today it can be yours for only $5.
Living in the Midwest, when someone mentions a trip to Chicago, it conjures up thoughts of deep dish pizza, outstanding hot dogs, major sports rivalries, and entirely too much traffic. Rarely do most associate specific bands with the Windy City (with the exception of the Blues Brothers), since arguably the biggest act to come out of Illinois is a solo artist by the name of Kanye West. Today’s band maybe isn’t up there with the greatest acts of all time for many, but perhaps they should be.
Amy’s process of making Back to Black was interesting: she would record her studio work onto a CD and listen to it in her father’s cab. She wanted to hear it how the majority of people would, and made tweaks based on that medium. It spawned five hit singles, was nominated for two Grammy Awards (and won one of them) and received unanimous critical acclaim. Today you can score this album for only $5.
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