"I’m laying out some extreme emotional highs and lows, which feels good," observes Carrie Rodriguez on her fifth solo album Give Me All You Got, an album of personal and confessional songs that returns the Austin, TX singer and fiddler to the task of songwriting after 2010's covers album Love and Circumstance.
Originally published on Wed January 9, 2013 11:47 am
I'm not very good at keeping New Year's resolutions. One year I resolved to "get into yoga." I even wrote that down on a note card and kept it on the refrigerator. Two months later, after doing nothing, I crossed it out and wrote, "be AWARE of yoga."
This year I didn't bother making a list about health and fitness resolutions. But I do have a mental list of some personal improvements I'd like to make when it comes to music.
The singer Skin of Skunk Anansie performs at Brixton Academy in London last month. She wrote the foreword to Laina Dawes' <em>What Are You Doing Here?: A Black Woman's Life and Liberation in Heavy Metal.</em>
Credit Simone Joyner / Redferns via Getty Images
Music journalist Laina Dawes is a contributing editor at <a href="http://www.blogher.com/">BlogHer</a>. She has also written for <a href="http://exclaim.ca/">Exclaim! Canada</a> and <a href="http://www.hellbound.ca/">Hellbound</a>.
'The Carpenter' is the 2012 album from the critically acclaimed North Carolina Folk-Pop-Rock band The Avett Brothers. Produced by Rick Rubin and recorded in North Carolina and Malibu, the record follows the group's 2009 breakthrough release and celebrated major label debut, I And Love And You. Blending Bluegrass, Folk and Punk with a Rock 'n' Roll attitude, the quintet, led by brothers Seth and Scott Avett, continues to pen poignant and powerful songs on this new release.
Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 11:55 am
"We just played an absurd concert to nobody," Mount Eerie's Phil Elverum says, as he faces a sea of empty red seats at the Folger Shakespeare Library's gorgeous Elizabethan-style theatre in Washington, D.C., just across the way from the Supreme Court. Serendipitously, a group of schoolchildren had toured the oak halls of the library just minutes before, and would take cover in each other's coats from the gray rain outside.
<a href="http://apps.npr.org/bob-boilens-wristbands-2012/"><strong>INTERACTIVE: BOB BOILEN'S WRISTBANDS 2012</strong></a> - Wristbands, ticket stubs and badges from a few of the hundreds of shows Bob Boilen saw in 2012.
Credit Lauren Rock / NPR
Credit Shantel Mitchell / For NPR
Debo Band performs during globalFEST at New York City's Webster Hall on Jan. 8.
Credit Ryan Muir for NPR
Credit Ingrid Hertfelder / Emarcy Records
The Alabama Shakes' lead singer, Brittany Howard, onstage at NPR Music's SXSW showcase at Stubb's Wednesday night.
Credit Katie Hayes Luke for NPR
Credit John Rose / NPR
Patrick Watson performs live in concert at the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C.
Credit Mito Habe-Evans
Ralf Hutter (left) and the other members of Kraftwerk in performance at the Museum of Modern Art in New York on Tuesday.
Credit Peter Boettcher / Courtesy of MoMA
Death Grips at Le Poisson Rouge.
Credit Loren Wohl for NPR
Lost In The Trees perform at Le Poisson Rouge in New York City on April 11, 2012.
Originally published on Sat January 5, 2013 7:43 am
What a brilliant year for live music 2012 was. And I saw an awful lot of it: 462 performances, by my count. I know that sounds insane — more concerts than days in a year. Many of those were full concerts, but sometimes at music festivals I'd run from club to club or stage to stage just to catch a song or two. It's all part of a quest to find new music and hear new talent. Even a short taste helps me know whether I need to pay attention to a burgeoning band or whether a classic act seems to give a damn anymore.