Music

NPR Story
7:20 am
Sat June 29, 2013

A Tribute To 'Annoying Music' Host

Jim Nayder, host of the The Annoying Music Show and Magnificent Obession, died this week. Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon, left, remembers his good friend.
Courtesy Scott Simon

Originally published on Sun June 30, 2013 4:46 pm

Longtime Chicago radioman Jim Nayder brought ear-aching music from his Annoying Music Show to Weekend Edition for many years. He died on Friday at the age of 59. Host Scott Simon has this remembrance of his friend.

Jim Nayder was a sweet soul and a cockeyed wit in a world with too little of both. He said annoying music wasn't bad, so much as good songs recorded by big stars who should have known better.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
5:20 am
Sat June 29, 2013

Maya Beiser: Tiny Desk Concert

Maya Beiser performs a Tiny Desk Concert on April 9, 2013.
Marie McGrory NPR

Originally published on Mon December 23, 2013 6:25 pm

Maya Beiser's Twitter handle — @CelloGoddess — says it all. She's a brilliant cellist with a stunning command of her instrument, and she's tightly tied to technology. Beiser takes the sound of her cello and runs it through loop pedals, effects and other electronics to make her instrument shimmer, drone and groove. Then there's her magnificent sense of melody.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:36 am
Sat June 29, 2013

Why Tchaikovsky's Bells And Cannons Sound Every July 4

The Boston Pops rehearses for its Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular on July 3, 2012, at the Charles River Esplanade.
Paul Marotta Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 29, 2013 3:44 pm

The Fourth of July is just around the corner, and on the big day, Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture will be heard from coast to coast, complete with fireworks and cannons. But how did a Russian composition, depicting the rout of Napoleon's Army, end up as the unofficial soundtrack for our most quintessentially American holiday?

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The Summer of '63
4:17 pm
Fri June 28, 2013

Bittersweet At No. 1: How A Japanese Song Topped The Charts In 1963

Underlying the sweetness of Kyu Sakamoto's unexpected hit song "Sukiyaki" was a story of sadness and loss.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 9:22 pm

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All Songs Considered
3:48 pm
Fri June 28, 2013

Hear The Pixies' First Original Song In Nine Years

Courtesy of the artsit

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World Cafe
1:32 pm
Fri June 28, 2013

Iron And Wine On World Cafe

Iron And Wine.
Craig Kief Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 5:39 pm

At the heart of Iron and Wine is a 38-year-old singer-songwriter from South Carolina named Sam Beam, but Beam's new sixth album, Ghost on Ghost, is his most lavish full-band production yet. Back in 2002, the first Iron and Wine album essentially consisted of stripped-down demos, released as-is. In the spareness of those early recordings, Beam used only what he had available to him: a guitar, a banjo and a 4-track tape recorder.

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Piano Jazz With Jon Weber
12:30 pm
Fri June 28, 2013

John Medeski On Piano Jazz

John Medeski.
Michael Bloom Courtesy of the artist

As the keyboardist for the trio Medeski, Martin & Wood, John Medeski has been bringing jazz and fusion to rock audiences for more than two decades. He recently began playing solo piano concerts in venues around the world. On this episode of Piano Jazz, Medeski joins host Jon Weber to perform pieces from his new solo piano album, A Different Time, as well as a surprising duet or two.

Originally recorded March 4, 2013.

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Music Interviews
12:03 pm
Fri June 28, 2013

For Carole King, Songwriting Is A 'Natural' Talent

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 10:55 am

This interview was originally broadcast on April 11, 2012.

Carole King initially found it extremely difficult to navigate the social hierarchies of high school. The Grammy Award-winning songwriter was a few years younger than her fellow classmates and was often dismissed as being "cute."

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Deceptive Cadence
11:58 am
Fri June 28, 2013

The Wunder Years: Sloppy Johann

Pablo Helguera

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

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Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
11:18 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Tony DeSare On Piano Jazz

Tony DeSare.
Courtesy of the artist

Singer and pianist Tony DeSare grew up in Glen Falls, N.Y. He began his musical career on violin, but from an early age, he expressed a fascination with the piano and organ. His parents bought him a small Casio keyboard to test his interest, and by age 12, DeSare had been given a full-size keyboard and was taking piano lessons.

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