Music

Music

Indigo Girls On Mountain Stage

Nov 2, 2016

Indigo Girls appears on Mountain Stage, recorded live in Charleston, W.Va. One of the finest folk-rock duos of all time, Indigo Girls first began visiting Mountain Stage 25 years ago, in 1991. And from their band's beginnings in Georgia to its major-label success and beyond, Amy Ray and Emily Saliers have remained true to their artistic vision and devoted fan base.

Calling themselves "an accidental brass quartet," the members of The Westerlies, like the prevailing winds, blew east to New York from their hometown of Seattle, where they were childhood friends.

HBO's new Westworld series is only five episodes deep, but the sci-fi western has already established itself as a reliable source for musical easter eggs. Nearly every episode has featured a player piano in the background clinking out versions of popular rock songs. The slightly out-of-tune instrumentals end up sounding like something Scott Joplin might have played.

If you're looking of a break from the relentless assault of gut-churning news headlines, you've come to the right place! For this week's show I thought I'd send a little bit of good cheer into the world with some big, joyful group sing-alongs that celebrate life and all its gloriousness.

The first burst of light and love comes from the London-based band Crystal Fighters and its anthem to how momentary and magical life is. I follow with Fialta, a group from California with a simple message: We're all in this together.

Since 2009, Seattle's Erin Birgy has led the mutating group Mega Bog, which originally started jamming together after a group swimming trip. The project's thoroughly Aquarian origins are evident in its weird and comforting wooze, which unites the jazzy ease of Chicago's The Sea And Cake with dub's slippery mysticism and lackadaisical guitar solos that unspool like lava-lamp bubbles.

Last week, World Cafe landed in Nashville to kick off World Cafe Nashville, a series of upcoming studio sessions and events showcasing the broad, vibrant musical landscape of Music City. There's definitely something in the water there, and with World Cafe Nashville, we'll be tapping into what makes that music scene tick. At our Oct.

Jazz great Wynton Marsalis, a virtuoso trumpet player and Pulitzer Prize-winning composer, has written — wait for it — a violin concerto.

As the daughter of the late virtuoso violinist Roman Totenberg, I was intrigued and wanted to know more. So I spent an hour with Marsalis — and the violinist he wrote his concerto with and for. (More on that later.)

The New York City duo The Shacks is made up of Shannon Wise and Max Shrager, who are 18 and 20 years old, respectively. The band's new, self-titled EP includes its first single, "Strange Boy," and some similarly atmospheric songs. Wise's voice belies her age, and with Shrager's production, this sounds like the early work of a force to be reckoned with. Hear two songs in the audio segment.

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Adia Victoria has traveled a long way since she dropped out of high school in South Carolina. She impulsively hopped to London and Paris, to New York City and back to the American South. In Atlanta, she learned guitar and steeped herself in the blues, which she says represented "the first time in my life that I felt connected to my blackness and to my Southernness." Finally, it was on to Nashville.

Grandaddy will release its first new album in more than a decade next year. It's called Last Place and is due out March 3 on Danger Mouse's 30th Century Records.

Long ago, electronic music was created on massive consoles the size of refrigerators. But in 1970, the Minimoog Model D was unleashed, and its impact was nothing short of revolutionary.

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Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

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My first experience seeing Joseph was in 2014 as an opening act in New York City. It was just the twins Meegan and Allison Closner and their older sister, Natalie Closner, and it was clear then they had something special. Over these two years, Joseph's sound has grown beyond the Closners' harmonies. Now, you're likely to see them with a band or hear songs from their latest record, which is filled with sounds far beyond voice and acoustic guitar.

This week, Phil Collins released a memoir called Not Dead Yet. As if to prove the title's truth, he also announced new tour dates. Collins isn't dead yet, nor are many of his pioneering contemporaries — in fact, boomer musicians seem to be having a bit of a pop-culture moment.

Four years ago, the world learned the name Pussy Riot, a politically active Russian art collective whose members were all women. Members of that group staged a punk rock demonstration in a church in protest of Russian president Vladimir Putin and the Russian church's support of his presidential campaign.

On this week's +1 podcast, NPR Music contributor Timmhotep Aku talks with singer and rapper Anderson .Paak and producer Knxwledge about their new collaboration under the name NxWorries.

The music the LA-based duo makes exists at the intersection of soul and raw, sample-based hip-hop ballads over beats. Anderson .Paak lends his inimitable voice, songwriting and slick tongue to NxWorries, while Knxwledge is the quieter half with a talent for finding and flipping samples into transfixing loops.

In the middle of a sold-out three-night run at The Theatre at Ace Hotel in Los Angeles, Wilco recorded a very special session for KCRW. The band was in top form, playing some fan favorites alongside songs from its latest release, Schmilco. Here's the excellent "Someone To Lose."

SET LIST

  • "Someone To Lose"

Photo: Dustin Downing/KCRW.

This week we present the first episode from the 2016-2017 Pickathon Woods Series. These videos are hand-picked by opbmusic to showcase some of the most exciting performances captured at the Woods Stage during Pickathon, a three-day festival held each summer just outside Portland, Ore.

As Bon Iver's Justin Vernon prepped the release for his latest mind-bender, 22, A Million, he knew he didn't want to talk too much about the album or grant a lot of interviews. So he held a single press conference in Eau Claire, Wisc., on Sept. 2, just a few weeks after performing the entire album live at Vernon's own Eaux Claires Music & Arts Festival.

It's hard to imagine a more desolate, soul-crushing landscape than the great salt flats in Bolivia. The Salar de Uyuni stretch as far as the eye can see for thousands of square miles, with nothing to disturb the horizon but a vast layer of salt several feet thick. It's like a surreal, alien planet completely incapable of supporting any life.

What are you doing for the next 10 days? That's how long it would take, without sleep, to listen to the new Mozart edition. The mammoth set, which some are touting as the biggest box set ever, claims to hold every note of Mozart's music and then some.

Review: Lambchop, 'FLOTUS'

Oct 27, 2016

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify playlist at the bottom of the page.

Review: Jim James, 'Eternally Even'

Oct 27, 2016

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify playlist at the bottom of the page.

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify playlist at the bottom of the page.

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