A Fond, Familiar Note of Encouragement

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Thursday's Pick

  • Song: "However Many Takes It Takes"
  • Artist: Vandaveer
  • CD: Grace & Speed
  • Genre: Folk-Pop

Mark Charles Heidinger, a.k.a. Vandaveer, is equal parts storyteller and musician. Rob Myers hide caption

toggle caption Rob Myers

D.C.-based singer-songwriter Mark Charles Heidinger, also of rock band The Apparitions, is equal parts storyteller and musician. Channeling countless '60s folksingers in his emphatic strums and sharp rhymes, Heidinger released Grace & Speed under the name Vandaveer early this year.

That album's opening track, "However Many Takes It Takes," feels comfortingly familiar — Heidinger has said of writing it, "I suppose I stole some chords, borrowed a mouthful of words, and sprinkled a not entirely unfamiliar melody on top." And, while it's not the only song on the album that exhibits a Dylan-esque quality, Heidinger makes it work.

With a voice suitable for both rock and folk, he has a natural flair for the delivery of the latter. Through the simple tune and encouraging lyrics, he imparts a universal message: "Sometimes it's better to be strong / We all got to be moving on / You got to walk a million miles / Oh, honey, go walk them with a smile."

Listen to yesterday's 'Song of the Day.'

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