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Music / Iron and Wine

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"Will you say to me, when I'm gone
Your face is faded but lingers on
Cause light strikes a deal with each coming night"
— "Each Coming Night"

Iron and Wine is the stage name of American singer-songwriter Sam Beam (born July 26, 1974). Known for quiet, melodic acoustic songs as well as an impressive beard, he has released a multitude of albums over the years.

Iron and Wine contains examples of:

  • A Good Name for a Rock Band: Sam Beam was inspired by a food supplement labeled "beef iron and wine" while filming a movie.
  • Dead All Along: The Iron and Wine version of the song "Love Vigilantes" is far less ambiguous about this than the original, with it being all but stated that the singer is the returning ghost of a soldier rather than the telegram telling his wife of his death being the result of a clerical error.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: Perhaps inverted; most of his output has a very layered sound and isn't easy to pin down genre-wise, while only his first two albums (and some B-sides and EPs from that era) prominently feature the hushed folk sound that he's best known for.
  • Epic Rocking: More like "epic folking" in this case. "The Trapeze Swinger" is over nine minutes long.
    • "Your Fake Name Is Good Enough For Me" is a more rockin' example, at around seven minutes.
  • Fading into the Next Song: Happens quite a bit on The Shepherd's Dog.
  • Genre Roulette: Elements of rock, jazz, and even electronica began to work their way into Beam's repertoire somewhere around the Woman King EP. Kiss Each Other Clean is perhaps his most difficult record to classify.
  • I Am the Band: Iron and Wine is more of a stage name for Sam Beam than an actual band name.
  • No Budget: The Creek Drank the Cradle is perhaps one of the best examples of an artist finding real success on a shoestring budget; the songs were four-track recordings made in Beam's basement that were originally just meant to be demos. The songs were released as is, and the rest is history. Today there are fans who still prefer that sound to anything he's made in a "real" studio with a producer.
  • The Oner: The music video for "Naked as We Came" is a long shot that pans across a picnic table full of food, then back again as its contents get drenched by sprinklers.
  • Precision F-Strike: "Promising Light", "Evening on the Ground (Lilith's Song)", "Innocent Bones", "Monkeys Uptown", "Big Burned Hand". Beam's hushed vocal style makes this trope that much more surprising, perhaps even a bit creepy, when it turns up.
  • Rearrange the Song: Live shows will often feature arrangements of songs that are quite radically re-imagined from their studio counterparts.
  • Sequel Song: "Sundown (Back in the Briars)" on Ghost on Ghost is sort of a reprise to "Caught in the Briars", which opens the album