Merrill Garbus is the woman behind Tune-Yards and writes and plays lush little ditties all by her lonesome. She shreds on a ukelele backed by either looped drums or looped mouth-beatz and the results are both surprisingly haunting and peaceful.
Here she is playing Little Tiger:
One thing I really love about her is the strange, almost reed-like quality of her voice. If she were embodied as an instrument, she would be like a well-played oboe, but I can see reasons why some wouldn't like it.
She also composed her own one-man sock-puppet opera called "The Fat Kid Opera". Here's a sample. I would really like to find more, however, this is the only one I could find.
I'm still kind of new at this blog format, so I don't know where the link ends up, but check out her myspace and, by extension, the link to the page to buy her album. It's well worth it, considering she's operating on an In Rainbows platform in that you can pay whatever you want.
I'm an idiot and I have figured out where the link went. Needless to say, it was in the wrong spot. Here is her actual myspace: Tune-Yards!
Even though all of the songs are awesome, my favorites would definitely have to be FIYA and Hatari, for the sheer fact that the latter has a clipped beat. When you listen to it, you'll understand what I'm saying.