If you had to go away for awhile and you could only take five of your favorite albums with you, which ones would you choose? Yes, we know it isn’t a fair question, but that hasn’t stopped us from asking music fans who happen to be recording artists in their own right. This edition of Desert Island Discs comes courtesy of Jess Klein, whose latest LP, Behind a Veil, is out now. You can listen to the album below — after reading her Desert Island picks, of course!

Buddy Guy, A Man and the Blues

I never get tired of how his voice and guitar sound both so broken in because of how he stretches each of them so much to express his feelings. And yet neither ever sounds rough. There’s always that sweetness beneath the pain.

Bob Dylan, Blood on the Tracks

Probably nothing I can say about this album that hasn’t already been said. It just brings a girl comfort to hear such brilliant, intimate and impassioned writing. Idiot Wind is such a weird and perfect concept.

Candi Staton, Evidence: The Complete Fame Recordings

So earthy, real, and power packed. Believe me, if you’ve got a broken heart there’s nothing more satisfying to sing along to at the top of your lungs in the shower, or maybe in this case under a palm tree, than ”The Best Thing You Ever Had.” ”Get it When I Want It,” ”He Called Me Baby,” ”Mr. and Mrs. Untrue” — oh lord, so good, I have to go listen to it now! Plus it’s a double disc so I cheated — ha!

Damien Dempsey, Seize the Day

In my opinion, Damien is the best singer/songwriter of my generation. He puts so much passion and energy into his live performances and his voice and lyrics are deadly. He’s kind of a national hero in Ireland; in the States he’s less known. I had the chance to tour with him a few years back and watched each night with my jaw on the floor as he’d get the whole room singing along with him by the end of the first song. Damo’s work inspired me to keep going at a time when I was questioning why I play music. If I was stuck on a desert island, I’d want to hear the lyrics ”I’m never going to let your negative vibes and comments get through to my psyche and cripple me”!

Free To Be You and Me

I’d bring this one because it reminds me of my childhood. If I was stuck on a desert island I would want to remember that I had a past. Plus it’s a great f*cking concept – not that I’d likely be worried about what anyone else thought if I were stuck on an island alone – but truly, we should all be free to be who we are.

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