The first and last “With the Grain“ post was published all the way back in August and I think it’s about time to publish another one. This will be my very first time pairing beer and music and my very first time writing about it. I don’t know much about beer tasting, but I do know what I do and do not like. Still, this makes me a bit nervous. I’m pretty sure I can’t do it as well as Jess (New Music Collaborative, Brewery Sessions), but I will give it my best try.
After reaching for a Yuengling Black and Tan, my immediate reaction was to push play on J. Tillman’s 2007 release Cancer and Delirium, and, more specifically, “When I Light Your Darkened Door.” Black and tans are either a combination of stout and lager, like the more traditional black and tan which is made of Guinness and Bass, but they can also be made with porter and lager as is the case with Yuengling’s Black and Tan. So, when I poured the Yuengling into a glass, its thin dark body and its tan, sandy head instantly reminded me of “When I Light Your Darkened Door” with J. Tillman’s breathy voice and rather stark instrumentation as well as its dark, melancholy mood. The taste matches the track’s vibe too. A hint of sweetness like a caramel, toffee taste and a bitter, vaguely biting flavor of coffee goes nicely with the way Tillman sweetly exposes his broken heart. And, like the track’s musical arrangement which smoothly adds simple layers upon layers, Yuengling’s Black and Tan goes down just as easily.
“When I Light Your Darkened Door” – J. Tillman