This is FRESH AIR. I'm David Bianculli, editor of the website TV Worth Watching, sitting in for Terry Gross. This week, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame announced its latest round of inductees, and among them is singer/songwriter Randy Newman. You have to have 25 years as an artist to qualify for the Hall of Fame, but Newman has clocked a lot more time than that.
On Friday night on PBS, Great Performances presents a documentary about the making of a Beatles TV special from 1967 — Magical Mystery Tour — then shows a restored version of that special. Magical Mystery Tour has the music from the U.S. album of the same name, but it's not the album. It's a musical comedy fantasy about the Beatles and a busload of tourists taking a trip to unknown destinations.
Originally published on Fri December 14, 2012 5:07 pm
Not every pioneer is a swashbuckler. Dido Armstrong, the hit-making British singer-songwriter, has a gentle voice that recalls backyard birdsong and a Jane Austen-like grasp of everyday heartache and perseverance.
Originally published on Wed December 19, 2012 5:53 pm
It's hard to boil down the year in electronic dance music to just 10 tracks. There are numerous genres (house, techno, EDM, etc.) and sub-genres (funky, hardstyle, deep house, etc.), and producing a banging track has never been easier for a new generation of talented up-and-comers who grew up with access to computers and high-speed Internet. (The members of one act featured below — Disclosure — still live with their parents.) We haven't come close to hearing five percent of the dance songs released in 2012 (and that may be generous).
Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 5:09 pm
As the peak of the holiday season draws near, Latin Roots explores some sizzling renditions of well-known Christmas classics. Most people are familiar with the traditional "Little Drummer Boy," but many have yet to enjoy a very popular Cuban version of the song, interpreted by the band Los Papines. The band, commonly known as the "Kings of Rumba," uses deep, percussive sounds to tell the story of a child's perspective of the holiday season.