Mayer Hawthorne hails from Ann Arbor, which explains why his particular update of old-school soul is much softer and fluffier than that of Columbus counterpart Nick Tolford. That city up north just simply doesn't rock as hard, despite its close proximity to Detroit Rock City.

Mayer Hawthorne hails from Ann Arbor, which explains why his particular update of old-school soul is much softer and fluffier than that of Columbus counterpart Nick Tolford. That city up north just simply doesn't rock as hard, despite its close proximity to Detroit Rock City.

Hawthorne has something to offer, though - more than Rich Rodriguez and the Wolverines, anyway. The bespectacled crooner's smooth, airy soul jams drip with misty condensation but never perspiration. He's simply too air-conditioner cool.