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Music for Fridays: An exclusive premiere of Frank Fairfield’s “King’s County Breakdown”

Music for Fridays: An exclusive premiere of Frank Fairfield’s “King’s County Breakdown”  (photo)

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Note: Each Friday, we’ll close with a song we consider a suiting goodbye for the workweek. With each Music for Fridays post, check for a free mp3.

California singer Frank Fairfield is a young performer who seems entirely of another time and place, both in what he plays and how passionately he plays it. It was barely more than a year ago when Fairfield told me he wasn’t much of a songwriter, insisting that he tinkered around with melodies and tunes from time to time, but that he wasn’t one of the greats–you know, someone like Stephen Foster, he said. Fairfield floored me with every note of his 2009 debut, a collection of perfectly ecstatic and desolate arrangements for songs sometimes more than a century old.

But Fairfield’s second album, Out on the Open West, includes a number of originals, and they’re mostly pretty great extensions of the histories he’s long been translating. One of the best is the spry instrumental “King’s County Breakdown,” a jaunty tune for the loose-stringed strum of guitarist Tom Marion and Fairfield’s jubilant fiddle. Fairfield leads here, putting down the melody and the bowing it to new heights every pass. In a way, “King’s County Breakdown” feels like an exultant escape route, a holler-and-smile-and-dance exit from all your troubles. Download the song here.

Out on the Open West is out May 31, via Tompkins Square. Also, watch this trailer for a new documentary about Fairfield.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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