Happy New Year! In an auspicious start to 2009, I had one of my old musical wishes granted, that is, sharing with you all a free MP3 from Kathleen Edwards. Not exactly new to the scene, this Canadian country crooner’s 2003 debut Failer had some of my all time favorite lines (“Wanna go get high? / The Mercury is parked outside under the lights”). She’s been pretty quiet since the mid-point of the decade, with Asking for Flowers coming after a three year break. The title track, available here, offers a perfect glimpse of what she has to offer — smooth and subtle vocals, an easy roots foundation, lyrics that offer a deeply personal narrative. And for this Midwesterner, something much better than watching Big 10 football teams getting creamed in the Cali sunshine.