By Leah Greenblatt
Updated October 15, 2008 at 04:00 AM EDT

Remember that counselor from summer camp, the one who would always bring out his acoustic guitar and get all the kids to sing along to James Taylor and Van Morrison? That’s 28-year-old Brett Dennen in a nutshell: His clear, melodic voice and easy-like-Sunday-morning compositions (see: ”San Francisco,” ”Closer to You”) are both benign and comforting on Hope for the Hopeless. It’s not surprising John Mayer recently took him on tour as an opener; the two share a consciousness-raising bent and the kind of tuneful folk-rock accessibility that makes the music supervisors at Grey’s Anatomy, One Tree Hill, et al. positively giddy. B+
Download This: Listen to tracks off of Hope for the Hopeless on the musician’s MySpace page