Jazz or blues may be the first thing that comes to mind we think of the contributions that African Americans have made to American music genres, but that overlooks the rich heritage of African- Americans in classical music. For two decades the Gateways Music Festival has challenged that image. This year the festival celebrates its 20th Anniversary in Rochester, New York and continues to celebrate the contributions of African-Americans to classical music by featuring world class musicians and conductors of African heritage.
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Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 10:20 am
The drummer Jimmy Cobb is 84 — which, even if you didn't know his name, would signal that he's been around the jazz scene for a while. But he's been more than around: He was the drummer when Miles Davis recorded his late-'50s and early-'60s masterpieces, and then toured with Sarah Vaughan for nearly a decade. He's freelanced with just about every great of his generation.
Originally published on Fri September 27, 2013 5:24 pm
Daughn Gibson is the alter ego of Pennsylvania singer-songwriter Josh Martin. The former stoner-rock drummer took on his nom de plume as an homage to country legend Don Gibson, which makes sense: Martin's life thus far sounds like a country song. He's worked behind the counter in an adult book store, poured tall ones as a bartender and worked as a long-haul trucker.
Hebridean tweed workers' songs, rowing songs, hiking songs, mouth music: their lyrics take a back seat to their integral rhythms, easing the work and keeping the singers going. Get into the rhythm of the song this week, with Catherine-Anne MacPhee, Ossian, Christy Moore, The Poozies, Alasdair Fraser and more.
Woody Shaw, who made his first recordings 50 years ago this summer, might be the jazz trumpet's least appreciated giant. Not among musicians, mind you; they recognize his genius whether they're horn players or not. Yet even hardcore fans often know Shaw's name more than his music.
Steinway & Sons, the 160-year-old musical instrument maker, is set to change hands.
Last month, a private equity firm emerged as the company's likely buyer. But a mystery bidder — rumored to be hedge fund manager John Paulson — has swooped in at the last minute, and now looks likely to take control of one of the oldest manufacturers in the United States. Paulson made billions betting against the housing market at a time when many thought housing prices could only go up. His reported offer for the company is $458 million.
In the town where I grew up — Memphis, Tenn. — Tad Pierson has made a career out of his love for cars and American music by working as a tour guide. We meet in the grand lobby of the Peabody Hotel, the downtown landmark famous for its ducks and Southern elegance. But it's also considered the starting point of the Mississippi Delta, a region steeped in the blues.
Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 5:30 pm
On this episode, Martha Wainwright joins us to talk about her late mother, Kate McGarrigle, and to sing us some of McGarrigle's songs.
McGarrigle, who died after a battle with cancer in January 2011, made a series of wonderful albums with her sister Anna during a career that spanned decades, beginning with their self-titled debut in 1975. The duo is probably best known for its cover of Linda Ronstadt's "Heart Like a Wheel."