Originally published on Tue November 12, 2013 10:05 am
A multi-talented 24-year-old from the U.K., James Blake is most widely known for his production skills. But when he performed for a small audience at the Berkeley Street Studio for KCRW, it was his voice and piano that really stood out. Blake combines the buzzy beats and dramatic anticipation of electronic production with soothing vocals and melodies, and the result is a one-of-a-kind experience.
After six years as a sideman for many soul veterans, Marc Ribot made his name in 1985 with Rain Dogs, the album that marked Tom Waits' permanent transition from eccentric singer-songwriter to truly weird singer-songwriter. Ribot has held down straight gigs since then, but his work has tended toward the avant-garde. That's much less true on the song-oriented second album by the trio he calls Ceramic Dog.
He's 66 years old, has beaten his body beyond belief and Iggy Pop will still out-rock you. We kick this week's All Songs Considered off with a cut from his new record with The Stooges, Ready To Die. Hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton chat about Iggy and the rest of this week's mix from different cities.
Henry Saint Clair Fredericks, a.k.a. Taj Mahal, started performing in his native New England, and developed his roots- and blues-influenced performance style after moving to California and playing in bands with Ry Cooder, among others. He often shared billing with '60s rock acts at the Fillmore West, and grew into a popular attraction at folk, blues and jazz venues around the world.
Originally published on Tue April 30, 2013 1:44 pm
The fact that Matt Pond has dropped the vestigial "PA" from the end of his moniker has more to do with geography than sound. On this episode of World Cafe, we learn why the singer-songwriter (and former Philadelphian) has moved around so much — it's all for love.
Pond does tell host David Dye what hasn't changed: his always likable voice and an ability to write heartfelt songs with melodies that stick.
Originally published on Tue April 30, 2013 1:11 pm
For the third installment of Q2 Spaces, we visited the home and work space of Tristan Perich — a New York-based sound, visual and installation artist whose music blends a composer's interest in acoustic classical instruments and electronic manipulation with an inventor's exploration into circuitry and computer code.
Originally published on Tue April 30, 2013 12:40 pm
The pianist and composer John Beasley has one of the most formidable tasks of anyone associated with today's International Jazz Day, the celebration produced by UNESCO and the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz. He's music director of the centerpiece concert to be live-streamed from Istanbul tonight (2 p.m. ET in the U.S.).