16. “Beautiful Pain” – Keaton Simons
There are quite a few songs that impacted me this year that aren’t on the list simply because they haven’t been released. I was very excited when Keaton Simons leaked a few of his newer songs in honor of Hotel Carolina, including my favorite, “Beautiful Pain”. I had several meetings with Keaton over the year, but the one that is most memorable (perhaps because it was most recent) was at The Hotel Café Christmas show. This evening ties with the evening of the Pepper’s Ghost show as the best musical event of my year. It was so full of amazing artists (Cary Brothers, Butch Walker, Joe Purdy, Chris Pierce), new discovers (Sweet Talk Radio, Javier Dunn) and surprise guests (Joey Ryan, Sara Barellies, Pink!!), by the end I was overwhelmed to tears. When Keaton came out, he played this song. It was a perfect moment.