Music News

Music News
7:09 am
Sat September 27, 2014

Mac Wiseman Returns To The Songs Of His Childhood

Mac Wiseman revisits lyrics his mother transcribed from the radio during his childhood on his new album, Songs From My Mother's Hand.
Jewly Hight NPR

Originally published on Sat September 27, 2014 9:07 am

Mac Wiseman is the kind of person who hangs on to things. At his home outside Nashville, the 89-year-old country balladeer points out a round dining table made of dark, grainy oak.

"It's the only one my mom ever had," he says. "She bought it when she and Dad got married. That was a year before my birth. So she bought it in 1924, which would make it 90 years old now."

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Music News
2:12 pm
Fri September 26, 2014

New Boston Symphony Music Director Andris Nelsons: 'It's Not A Job β€” It's Life'

"The music's kind of oozing out of not just his hands, but his whole body," Boston Symphony managing director Mark Volpe says of the orchestra's new music director, Andris Nelsons.
Marco Borggreve Boston Symphony Orchestra

Originally published on Fri September 26, 2014 6:23 pm

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Music News
5:17 am
Fri September 26, 2014

First Listen: 'Become Ocean' By John Luther Adams

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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The Record
9:17 am
Wed September 24, 2014

Roots, Plugged In

Jonah Tolchin performs at Grimey's in Nashville during the Americana Music Festival on Sept. 20.
Erika Goldring Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 25, 2014 9:10 am

When I put Jonah Tolchin's performance at Third Man Records on my schedule for Americana Fest, the annual gathering of roots-minded musicians that took over Nashville last week, I thought I was going to see a young artist playing old-timey music. Earlier this year, the 22-year-old New Jerseyite released an album, Clover Lane, that gently ranges from countryish ballads to uptempo numbers with a country blues feel.

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All Songs Considered
11:20 am
Tue September 23, 2014

Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross Share Four Songs From Their New 'Gone Girl' Score

Courtesy of the artist

Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor and producer Atticus Ross continue to tease their upcoming soundtrack for the movie, Gone Girl. The longtime collaborators have posted four new songs from the score to their Soundcloud page.

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The Record
8:09 am
Tue September 23, 2014

A Rational Conversation: Is PC Music Pop Or Is It 'Pop'?

The new collaboration between PC Music's A.G. Cook and affiliated producer SOPHIE is a combination singer and energy drink (neither of which might actually exist) called QT. Seriously.
YouTube

Originally published on Tue September 23, 2014 11:04 am

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Music News
3:10 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga Go 'Cheek To Cheek' On New Album

Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga's collaborative album is called Cheek To Cheek.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 9:16 am

You might think they go together like oil and water, or chalk and cheese.

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Music News
2:19 am
Fri September 19, 2014

The Song That Never Ends: Why Earth, Wind & Fire's 'September' Sustains

Earth, Wind & Fire onstage in 1979.
Ed Perlstein Redferns/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 12:23 am

If you've ever been to a wedding reception in the U.S., you know there's one question that can get a whole family on the dance floor: "Do you remember the 21st night of September?"

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Music News
2:19 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Breaking A Song Apart, Note By Note

A young Phil Elverum, circa late '90s.
Pat Castalado WikiCommons

Originally published on Thu September 18, 2014 4:49 pm

The Song Exploder podcast tells the story of songs by breaking them into their pieces and letting you hear how they were built.

Homepage photo: Pat Castalado/WikiCommons

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Music News
3:20 pm
Wed September 17, 2014

The Rise And Fall Of The Fade-Out

The Beatles' "Hey Jude" concludes with one of pop music's most epic fade-outs.
Vimeo

Originally published on Wed September 17, 2014 4:03 pm

Like the proverbial old soldier, some songs never die β€” they just fade away. Think of "Hey Jude," in which The Beatles hammer the closing refrain for more than three minutes before drifting into silence.

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A Blog Supreme
12:18 pm
Wed September 17, 2014

Steve Coleman, Saxophonist And Innovative Composer, Named MacArthur Fellow

Steve Coleman practices in his backyard in Allentown, Penn.
Jeff Fusco Courtesy of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Composer and alto saxophonist Steve Coleman, 57, has been named one of 21 new recipients of the MacArthur Fellowship, commonly referred to as the "genius grant." The award is worth a unrestricted stipend of $625,000 over five years, as dispensed by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

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Business
4:01 am
Mon September 15, 2014

Apple's U2 Album Promotion Backfires

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 7:25 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Music News
2:52 am
Mon September 15, 2014

Controversial Mexican Musician Temporarily Retires From Drug Ballads

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 6:08 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Two-Way
10:02 am
Sun September 14, 2014

Bob Marley's 'Legend' Album Finally Cracks Billboard Top 10

Bob Marley, seen here performing in Paris in 1980, died years before Legend was released. It has since sold millions of copies β€” and this week, it hit No. 5 on the Billboard chart.
Guidot Lou Dalle /Landov

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 6:04 pm

Billboard's album sales chart has a new entry in its No. 5 spot: Legend, the greatest hits record by Bob Marley and the Wailers. It's the highest spot ever for Marley. And while the 30-year-old album has sold millions of copies over the years, it only reached No. 54 when it was released.

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Music News
5:50 am
Sun September 14, 2014

Bob Crewe Knew How To Make Artists Sing

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 9:56 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Music News
3:31 am
Sun September 14, 2014

The Nile Project: Producing Harmony In A Divided Region

A group of Nile Project musicians play together at the Ndere Cultural Centre, Kampala, Uganda in January 2013. Left to right: Dina El Wedidi, Dafaalla El Hag, Lawrence Okello, Kasiva Mutua.
Julie Caine

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 11:32 am

In a quiet park in Kampala, Uganda, 14 musicians from seven East African countries sit together under a tree. They're working on an idea from Ugandan musician Lawrence Okello.

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The Two-Way
10:48 am
Sat September 13, 2014

A Talent That Bridged Genres: Jazz Pianist Joe Sample Dies

Pianist and composer Joe Sample, seen here at the 2010 Beirut Jazz Festival in Lebanon, has died at age 75.
NABIL MOUNZER EPA /Landov

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Remembrances
2:21 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Cosimo Matassa Made His Reputation Behind The Studio Glass

Originally published on Fri September 12, 2014 4:32 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Deceptive Cadence
1:26 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Listen To The Atlanta Symphony While It's Locked Out β€” Again

Robert Spano conducts members of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, who are now locked out for the second time in two years after failed contract negotiations.
J.D. Scott Atlanta Symphony Orchestra

Alas, it is dΓ©jΓ  vu all over again for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. At midnight Saturday, the ASO musicians and management failed to meet the deadline to agree on a new contract after eight months of negotiations. That means the players, while still employees of the orchestra, are effectively locked out of the Woodruff Arts Center (the orchestra's home) and will not receive paychecks until a new agreement can be ratified.

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The Record
7:00 am
Thu September 11, 2014

An Emerging Voice Of Americana (And Oklahoma)

Samantha Lamb Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu September 11, 2014 11:50 am

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Remembrances
2:59 am
Thu September 11, 2014

Jazz Arranger Gerald Wilson Dies At 96

Originally published on Thu September 11, 2014 6:24 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Music News
4:29 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Nonesuch At 50: A Record Label Without Borders

BjΓΆrk's interdisciplinary project Biophilia was released on the Nonesuch label in 2011.
Nonesuch

Originally published on Thu September 11, 2014 10:08 am

Sometimes good things come in small packages. Nonesuch Records, which started as a tiny independent budget classical label in 1964, is celebrating its 50th anniversary with three weeks of concerts at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. The label became a force in the recording industry by pioneering electronic music and world music, launching the ragtime revival and becoming a place where contemporary classical composers had a home. Now an industry powerhouse, Nonesuch still operates like an independent record company.

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NPR Ed
3:21 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

This Is Your Brain. This Is Your Brain On Music

Amir Pinkney-Jengkens, 8, is learning trombone through Harmony Project, a nonprofit that provides musical instruments and instruction to children in low-income communities. Recent research suggests that such musical education may help improve kids' ability to process speech.
Annie Tritt for NPR

Originally published on Thu September 11, 2014 9:55 am

Musical training doesn't just improve your ear for music β€” it also helps your ear for speech. That's the takeaway from an unusual new study published in The Journal of Neuroscience. Researchers found that kids who took music lessons for two years didn't just get better at playing the trombone or violin; they found that playing music also helped kids' brains process language.

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The Record
1:03 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Question Dot GIF: What Hometown Artist Inspired You To Make Music?

As a high schooler in Lafayette, Ind., Circuit des Yeux's Haley Fohr was encouraged by Pink Reason's Kevin Failure to pursue music.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Originally published on Tue January 13, 2015 8:03 am

At the Hopscotch Music Festival in Raleigh, N.C., you're just as likely to see a line out the door for a homegrown act as you would for an out-of-towner. It speaks to the idea that, even as the Internet allows an infinite amount of ideas, a central group of artists can still foster community, competition, and a creative spark.

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The Record
7:45 am
Tue September 9, 2014

All Together Now: The Beatles Are (Back) In Mono

The Beatles with George Martin in January 1967 at Abbey Road Studios in London.
Apple Corps Lt Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue September 9, 2014 3:48 pm

By now, three-fourths of the way through The Beatles' sort-of-official 50th-anniversary year, Fab Four fatigue is understandable.

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Music News
3:09 am
Tue September 9, 2014

Kate Bush Sells Out 22 Shows In Less Than 15 Minutes

Originally published on Tue September 9, 2014 6:11 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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Deceptive Cadence
2:38 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

Enduringly Dramatic Italian Soprano Magda Olivero Dies At 104

Magda Olivero performing Francis Poulenc's one-woman opera La voix humaine at San Francisco Opera in 1979.
Ron Scherl Redferns/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 11, 2014 5:53 pm

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All Songs Considered
10:00 am
Mon September 8, 2014

Song Premiere: Barbra Streisand And John Legend Together

Barbra Streisand during a recording session in Burbank, Calif.
Jason Merritt Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 29, 2014 10:11 am

Barbra Streisand, one of the most loved singers of all time and the best-selling female recording artist ever (according to RIAA statistics) has teamed up with the ever soulful, gospel-inspired singer John Legend on a song she originally recorded with Bee Gees singer and songwriter Barry Gibb in 1980.

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The Record
2:28 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

Gustavo Cerati, Leader Of Latin Rock's Soda Stereo, Dies At 55

Gustavo Cerati performs in the Dominican Republic in 2007. In 2010, Cerati suffered a stroke while on tour. He was in a coma until his death on Thursday.
Ricardo Hernandez AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 5, 2014 5:03 pm

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The Record
6:03 am
Fri September 5, 2014

A Rational Conversation: Nostalgia, DJ Shadow And Afrika Bambaataa

DJ Shadow spinning in Seattle during the Hard Sell tour.
Arian Stevens Courtesy of Magnum PR

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