The best way to get to know someone is to sit down and have a conversation with them, but it’s far more fun to pick through their music choices and find out why they love what they love. Cleveland garage rockers Ottawa shared some of their favorite tunes in this exclusive playlist curated just for you. Press play and get to know these guys before you see them on Friday, September 19th as part of Downtown Festival, where they will be opening for Young Rising Sons. Tickets are still available here.

PRESS PLAY: OTTAWA–TRACKLIST & WHY THEY PICKED ‘EM:

1.”A Dustland Fairytale” – The Killers:

Dale says: “To me, Brandon Flowers is king, the way Bruce Springsteen is to him. This song is about his parents, and I just find that so cool. “A dustland fairytale beginning with just another white trash county kiss” and “she said she always knew he’d come around” makes me think of stories from my own parents.”

2.”I Shut Off” – Ra Ra Riot:

Chris says: “Well, I have a tendency  to shut off. So I like this song.”

3.”Impossible Germany” – Wilco:

Tim says: “I chose Wilco because they are my favorite band to date. I really could put any song by this band in a favorites list. Wilco and its members truly are great artists, musicians and songwriters in my mind. As they continue to evolve as a band, they only get better. “Impossible Germany” showcases Jeff Tweedy’s amazing lyrical work, shows who they are as a band and showcases one of Wilco’s guitarists, Nels Cline, best solos to date.”

4.”Live Forever” – Oasis:

Will says: “Growing up the 90s I had to hear a lot of grunge music on the radio. I found a lot of it to be extremely pessimistic and negative. “Live Forever” by British band Oasis is a glaring contrast to grunge. The lyrics are positive and affirming and it has my second favorite guitar solo of all time. My favorite solo is at the end of Purple Rain by Prince.”

5.”Gypsy” – Fleetwood Mac:

Dale says: “The melody is incredible…the lead guitar/keyboard part is musical perfection. To me, it’s a song that would be a hit today just as big as it was in 1982. Every time I hear it I just feel like anything is possible. Lindsey’s guitar part at the end is unreal. It will be played at my wedding and my funeral–guaranteed.”

6. “In My Room” – The Beach Boys:

Will says: “The Beach Boys greatest hit record Endless Summer was the first album I ever listened to. My dad had it on cassette and I played it non-stop when I was a kid, as early as kindergarten. “In My Room” is a ballad about introspection. Something deeper than just a love song about a girl. It’s one of my favorite melodies of all time.”

7. “We Exist” – Arcade Fire:

Chris says: “I chose each song because I enjoy listening to them. They move me, I suppose. I think the metaphor comparing a storm brewing on a sea to a woman dancing is just beautiful. It paints a picture two ways for me. “We Exist” is an awesome Arcade Fire song with a great message and a bass groove that really drives the tune.”

8. “Warriors” – Thin Lizzy:

Steve says: “”Warriors” by Thin Lizzy is an epic song on their record that has killer drumming. Will and Tim like to do harmonized guitar riffs that remind me of Thin Lizzy. So I think they’re an influence, though they never specifically have said so.”

9. “Sequestered in Memphis” – The Hold Steady:

Tim says: “I chose “Sequestered in Memphis” by The Hold Steady for similar reasons as Wilco, but also because they have this great energy that really gets a crowd going. I have been fortunate to see them live maybe three or four times and they never disappoint! Their heavy guitars, rocking tempos and simplicity really grab me and inspire me every time I listen to them. I love both of these bands because they don’t need a lot of flash to tell their story and it’s really all about the songwriting and music for these guys, which I hope is recognizable in Ottawa’s music as well.”

10. “Letal” – Los Vigilantes:

Steve says: “Los Vigilantes is a cool garage-punk band that sings entirely in Spanish. Their songs are great to rock out to even though I don’t understand the words. The video for “Letal” is awesome and has Latin girls playing with knives. Garage punk in general is my favorite genre and influences my drumming with shoulder bopping rhythms.”

Ottawa is Tim Czajka (guitarist), Chris Williams (bassist), Dale DeLong (singer), Steve Crobar (drummer) and Will Hooper (guitarist).

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