Originally published on Fri March 14, 2014 5:10 pm
The members of The Bright Light Social Hour landed in Austin in 2006 and soon after got a reputation for what has been described as shows "melding fists-up rock and roll with muscular funk, soul, and psychedelia." Their first album won the band an unprecedented six Austin Music Awards in 2011 including "Band of The Year." Bright Light are working toward releasing their second full length album later this year. We are happy to present this set recorded at KUTX breakfast showcase at the Four Seasons just yesterday at SXSW as part of our Sense of Place visit to Austin.
Originally published on Sat March 15, 2014 9:56 am
For our Sense of Place: Austin we are excited to bring you the Baltimore duo Wye Oak from the Four Seasons in Austin. Next month, the band's Andrew Stack and Jenn Wasner are releasing Shriek, the follow-up to their very well received 2011 album Civilian. The two albums are startlingly different. Wesner plays no guitar on the new one and instead, as we will hear today, concentrates on the bass. The songs written on bass are very different as well — it's the reinvention of Wye Oak.
Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 1:16 pm
Our guests today are PHOX in the SXSW portion of our Sense of Place visit to Austin. The band members have done an amazing job of describing themselves on Facebook: "PHOX is a bunch of friends from the Midwestern circus hamlet Baraboo, Wisc., a place where kids often drink poisoned groundwater and become endowed mutants. They make music that straddles Feist and Monty Python." Their debut is coming on Partisan Records in June.
Our guests on the SXSW portion of our Sense of Place visit to Austin are the members of Kins. They're a band that seems to like the southern coast of whatever landmass they're on — originally from Melbourne, Australia, their home base is now Brighton, England.
NPR Music's team in Austin woke up on Thursday, like many around the country did, looking for news about the accident that killed two people and injured 23 more at SXSW on Wednesday night. "It was hard to sort of walk out the door today and know that today was going to be another day at SXSW," Bob Boilen said at the end of what he called a long, very emotional day.
Originally published on Fri March 14, 2014 1:33 pm
With St. Patrick's Day upon us, it's hard to escape the allure of the Emerald Isle, with its rolling heaths, swirling jigs, frothy beer and curious legends. While we can't afford to fly you to Dublin we can offer this humble St. Paddy's Day puzzler. Score high and be rewarded with the pot 'o gold at the end of the rainbow. Mess up and yours is a sad bowl of soggy Lucky Charms.
Kelis hadn't taken the stage in America since 2010. But from her opening notes — in which she took on the standard "Feeling Good," as popularized by Nina Simone — the singer never shied away from the most lavish possible spectacle on stage at NPR Music's SXSW showcase, held at Stubb's BBQ. Backed by a 12-piece band, complete with horn section and backup singers, Kelis reintroduced herself to the world as a transformed artist whose sound looks forward and backward without losing its focus on the present.
Our Sense of Place stop in Austin continues today with longtime resident and singer-songwriter Patty Griffin. In late 2013, Griffin finally saw the release of her album Silver Bell. It was recorded in 2000 as the follow-up to her second album, Flaming Red, but was shelved by her record company.
Longtime Austin resident Jody Denberg, who is at least somewhat responsible for Austin's musical tastes as the program director of KGSR radio for 19 years, is our guest for this Sense of Place episode. KGSR was and is a commercial station playing music, much like public station KUTX, where Denberg works today. Although he was born in New York, he is with us to talk about the musical history of his adopted home. He engagingly brings a fan's perspective.