Originally published on Wed February 27, 2013 5:09 pm
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At a show one night in Washington, D.C., Brendan Canty — a legendary and active local drummer, Fugazi alumnus, filmmaker and music fan — handed me a home-burned CD. The disc was just silver, with no writing or markings on it and music by his new band Deathfix, in which he performs with his friend and former Bob Mould bandmate and producer, Rich Morel.
This week All Songs Considered is brought to you in part by the letter "B." Robin Hilton starts it off with Louisiana natives Brass Bed and the song "Cold Chicory." Then Bob Boilen shares a new cut from the artist Bombino from Niger.
For four decades, Richard Thompson has consistently set songwriting and performance standards to which others aspire. He has long been acknowledged as both a sensitive writer and an innovative guitarist.
Thompson has just released his new CD 'Electric', produced by another guitar hero, Buddy Miller. The disc features some rock and roll, along with a few acoustic gems. Check out Ken Tucker's review from 'Fresh Air' here.
After beginning Unknown Mortal Orchestra in a Portland basement a few years ago, Ruban Nielson didn't expect anyone to hear the music at all, let alone demand to hear an entire album's worth of it. He'd returned to Portland intent on turning away from music following the dissolution of The Mint Chicks, the band he and his brother Kody led for nine years. But that's not quite how things worked out.
Winston Yellen didn't start singing until he was 18 — he's 23 now — but he's already got one of 2013's most arresting new voices. As the singer for the country-rock group Night Beds, Yellen often performs a cappella, with tremendous soul and nuance.
Formed in 2008, Pickwick members Galen Disston, Michael and Garrett Parker, Cassady Lillstrom, Alex Westcoat, and Kory Kruckenberg forged a path toward neo-soul and in 2011 released a compilation of music from three of their EPs. The result was Myths, released one single at a time on 7" vinyl, which put the band on the map and became one of the most popular albums of the year in Seattle.
John Lennon and his wife, Yoko Ono, pictured above in January 1970, are the subjects of Jonathan Cott's new book <em>Days That I'll Remember</em>. Cott met Lennon in 1968 and was friends with the couple.
Credit Anthony Cox / Getty Images
Jonathan Cott is a contributing editor at <em>Rolling Stone</em>. He is the author of the biography <em>Dylan</em><em> </em>and the co-editor of <em>The Ballad of John and Yoko</em>. He lives in New York City.
As the European editor of Rolling Stone, Jonathan Cott spent his time interviewing legendary musicians like Mick Jagger and Pete Townshend. But in 1968, he finally got the opportunity to meet his hero, John Lennon. Cott was nervous.
"He said, 'There's nothing to be nervous about,'" Cott recalls. "'It's going to be OK, and we're doing it together, and that's what really matters.'"
Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 11:55 am
Aaron Neville has been a radio mainstay for more than five decades. Coming from a musical family in New Orleans, he got his start singing with The Neville Brothers and had his first No. 1 R&B hit in 1966 with "Tell It Like It Is."
Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 3:21 pm
As televised prize-givers, the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences are slouches. The dozen prizes given out in a typical Grammy Awards telecast is the lowest of any major awards-show telecast, from the Oscars to the Emmys. NARAS gives out the bulk of its little gramophones in an untelevised ceremony.
But as sales-juicers? The Grammys are unparalleled.
Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 2:43 pm
In its quest to become the world's most brutal, ugly and offensive death-metal act, a young band should ask itself three questions: "How fast can the drummer blast-beat?" "How many unspeakable acts can we cram into three minutes, lyrically speaking?" "Are the riffs-per-second an accurate measure of how brutal we truly are?" I'm only sort of kidding. These exercises in ridiculousness are par for the course, though their excess is not unrewarded. Enter Wormed.