Kin: Songs by Mary Karr & Rodney Crowell, released last month, is a collaboration between a best-selling author and a Grammy-winning singer-songwriter. Karr and Crowell sing songs about growing up in Texas in the '50s, material they've each grappled with in their own work. Karr's best-selling memoir The Liar's Club deals with themes of family, love and loss.
Before Japandroids reached the popularity they've earned today, guitarist Brian King and drummer David Prowse had to endure some ups and downs. In the beginning, the duo gave up the search for a lead vocalist and third member, deciding instead to split vocal duties. This turn of events ended up affecting the band's dual but equal decision-making process — even the band's name is a hodgepodge of ideas from each member.
The Shins are a dream-pop outfit from Portland, Ore. Arising as a side project while singer/songwriter James Mercer lived in New Mexico, the band took on a life of its own after a number of singles such as "New Slang" were featured in films, pulling the young indie rock group into the national spotlight.
Originally published on Thu August 16, 2012 10:09 am
Though John Lydon remains best known as Johnny Rotten, former lead singer of The Sex Pistols, his music career didn't end with the pioneering punk act's split in 1978. Lydon formed Public Image Ltd shortly thereafter and dropped his adopted stage name. Widely considered the first post-punk band, PiL experiments with a wide palette of sounds, including dub, rock and disco.
Together nearly 30 years, the reggae band Third World is one Jamaica's most popular and decorated musical acts, with listeners around the world and 10 Grammy nominations to its name. Partly responsible for mainstreaming reggae music, the group formed in 1973 and built a solid following playing the Kingston reggae scene, making its debut at Jamaica's Independence Day celebration.
David Lynch must know something we don't. There's a name for people like him — not director, not writer, not producer, not even photographer, but auteur. Lynch thoughtfully combines images and music, working with composer Angelo Badalamenti to breed a unique atmosphere in creations such as the TV series Twin Peaks and the film Blue Velvet.
Megan Reilly strips away the gloss of modern country music to find an emotional sound rooted in folk and classic pop. Her latest album, The Well, departs significantly from its six-year-old predecessor; supported by an acoustic backbone, her new songs drift into retro territory, with occasional psychedelic guitar riffs and pop melodies that recall love ballads from the '60s.