Jenny Lewis with The Watson Twins (f. Ben Gibbard, Conor Oberst and M. Ward)
"Handle With Care"
Rabbit Fur Coat
The need to know: Rilo Kiley frontwoman Jenny Lewis can be a mixed bag, both solo or in her indie rock day job. But in 2006 she stirred up a whole bunch of fanfare with her collaboration with The Watson Twins, Rabbit Fur Coat. An album of blue-eyed soul with a tinge of countrified flair, it found lovers amongst Rilo Kiley fans and beyond, and jump started The Watson Twins as an act to keep on the radar.
Why it's worthy: "Handle With Care" is just a great song, for starters. Originally recorded by the Travelling Wilburys, themselves something of an odd superroup, covering it with a who's who of 2006 indie rock just made it all the more noteworthy. Lewis, of course, tackles most of the lead vocals on this version (the parts generally sung by George Harrison), with Death Cab for Cutie's Ben Gibbard taking over for Roy Orbison (naturally) and M. Ward and Conor Oberst going for the Tom Petty/Bob Dylan/Jeff Lynne bits. It's a little bit sweeter (especially when Lewis croons, "Baby, you're adorable"), and maybe a little less cynical, but, as cover songs go, this version ain't too shabby.
Quotable lyric: "Been stuck in airports, terrorized/ Sent to meetings, hypnotized/ Overexposed, commercialized/ Hand me with care"
Where you've heard it: This isn't the only time Lewis and Gibbard have collaborated: She also contributed backing vocals for The Postal Service's album Give Up.