Watching Flaco Jimenez play his button accordion is like looking back in time. His grandfather started playing an accordion in cantinas and family parties along the Texas/Mexican border around the late 1800s. Then Flaco's dad, Santiago Jimenez Sr., carried on the family tradition when he released his first record in 1936.
After a three-year stint as a touring pianist with Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, California native Aaron Embry struck out on his own. Embry wrote his solo debut, Tiny Prayers, while on the band's Railroad Revival Tour, crafting bare-bones acoustic melodies that recall the work of Embry's past collaborators, including Elliott Smith and Willie Nelson.
U.S. Olympian Leo Manzano won the Silver Medal in the men's 1500 meter run, becoming the first American to do so since 1968. In Tell Me More's occasional series, "In Your Ear," Manzano talks about the kind of music that gets him pumped and ready to run.
Singer-songwriter Rodney Crowell makes his fourth appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live on the campus of Ohio University in Athens. From the time he arrived in Nashville in the early '70s, Crowell has remained one of country music's most important songwriters. His work with Emmylou Harris' Hot Band — and, later, alongside Vince Gill and Tony Brown in The Cherry Bombs — is the stuff of legend.
Originally published on Mon November 12, 2012 12:03 pm
Who says a rock 'n' roll queen can't do country? Not Wanda Jackson. Best known as a rockabilly pioneer and original FOE (Friend of Elvis — she toured with him in 1955), the 75-year-old Oklahoma native has always had a thing for twang, too. Rock fans who've recently discovered Jackson know her for ravers like 1960's "Let's Have a Party. Last year, the Jack White-produced The Party Ain't Over caught that fiery spirit and ran with it.
Originally published on Thu November 15, 2012 10:55 am
Over the course of an exceptionally long and productive life, the late Elliott Carter was championed by many leading conductors, soloists and ensembles. Among the most prominent is pianist and conductor Daniel Barenboim, who has premiered many of Carter's works.
Each year around this time, weekends on All Things Considered welcomes world music DJ Betto Arcos onto the show to share some of his favorite nominees from this Latin Grammys, the 2012 installment of which is coming up next week. Arcos hosts the program Global Village on KPFK in Los Angeles; his picks include singer-songwriters from Mexico and Brazil, a Chilean rapper and a Puerto Rican-American jazz saxophonist.
The song "The Seed (2.0)," a collaboration between the hip-hop band The Roots and singer Cody ChesnuTT, was everywhere 10 years ago. But while The Roots produced album after album in the decade that followed, ChesnuTT took a hiatus. Now, he's finally out with his second full-length record, Landing on a Hundred.
"About four and a half, five years ago, material started coming," ChesnuTT tells NPR's Rachel Martin. "Certain ideas — lyrical phrases and melodies — would pop into my head, and I felt good about it. I felt energized again. I felt inspired again."
One hundred fifty years ago today, Giuseppe Verdi first mounted his opera La Forza del Destino ("The Force of Destiny") on a stage in St. Petersburg, Russia. Today, La Forza is considered one of Verdi's masterpieces, but it wasn't always that way. The story of Don Alvaro, whose love for the aristocratic Leonora incurs the wrath of her family, is violent and chaotic, and it flopped on its first run.
Nickelback. The name itself is musical shorthand for everything music aficionados love to hate about modern rock.
But with more than 50 million record sales worldwide and a lead singer who earns $10 million a year, the band is laughing all the way to the bank — as reporter Ben Paynter describes in Bloomberg Businessweek Magazine.