Music

Music Interviews
7:39 am
Sat April 20, 2013

An American In Mali, Teaching The Country's Sounds

Sara Nimaga plays the balafon in Paul Chandler's music class at the American International School in Bamako, Mali.
Ofeibea Quist-Arcton NPR

Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 8:33 am

Numbers are down at the American International School in Bamako, the capital of Mali.

In just over a year, the country has witnessed a rebellion, a military coup and the occupation by Islamist fighters of the desert northern region, recently largely liberated in a counteroffensive by French-led forces. Despite the troubles, the school is open and classes continue.

Teacher Paul Chandler is taking his combined class of 6th- and 7th-graders through their early paces, learning the Malian music they'll be performing at the annual school concert.

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Music
6:17 am
Sat April 20, 2013

Not For Kids, These Child Ballads Are Steeped In History

Anais Mitchell and Jefferson Hamer's new collaborative album is titled Child Ballads.
Jay Sansone Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat April 20, 2013 5:01 pm

Some stories stand the test of time: Shakespeare's plays, the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm, and the Child ballads.

If you're unfamiliar with them, they're not for children. They're Scottish and English folk songs from the 17th and 18th centuries and earlier. They're named after Francis James Child, the Harvard professor and folklorist who collected them.

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Deceptive Cadence
5:22 am
Sat April 20, 2013

A Moment With Pulitzer-Winning Composer Caroline Shaw

Caroline Shaw, who composed the piece Partita for 8 Voices for her vocal group Roomful of Teeth, is the youngest-ever recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for music.
Dashon Burton Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat April 20, 2013 1:57 pm

How do you write something like Partita for 8 Voices, the a cappella vocal piece that is this year's winner of the Pulitzer Prize for music?

"Very late at night," says the composer, Caroline Shaw, speaking with NPR's Scott Simon. "Sometimes it comes from having a sound in your head that you really want to hear, that you've never heard before, and struggling to make that sound happen in any way you can."

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Concerts
4:41 pm
Fri April 19, 2013

For Boston: A Dave McKenna Concert

Originally published on Sat April 20, 2013 9:58 am

Fresh Air pays tribute to Boston with a 1988 performance by the late jazz pianist Dave McKenna. From 1981 to 1991, McKenna had a standing gig at Boston's Grand Dame Copley Plaza Hotel. He was also a loyal Red Sox fan. He died in 2008.

All Songs Considered
3:39 pm
Fri April 19, 2013

12 Reasons To Visit Your Local Record Store Day On Saturday

Record Store Day is Saturday, April 20, 2013.
Record Store Day

Originally published on Sat April 20, 2013 6:07 pm

It's a perfect illustration of the current age of music fandom that this year's Record Store Day comes at the end of the week when Twitter introduced its music service — an online streaming music tool that tethers discovery to acquaintances who probably know your taste about as well as the checkout girl at the grocery store does.

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Music
3:15 pm
Fri April 19, 2013

Willy Porter Visits WDIY

Contemporary American rock musician and singer-songwriter from Willy Porter, along with vocalist Carmen Nickerson, stopped by the WDIY to talk about the importance of public radio, and to play a few songs, as part of our Public Radio Music Month celebration.

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World Cafe
2:08 pm
Fri April 19, 2013

Eels: A 'Wonderful, Glorious' Look At Life

Eels.
Piper Ferguson Courtesy of the artist

The last few years have found Mark Oliver Everett of Eels doing more than a bit of summing up. That includes an autobiography, Things the Grandchildren Should Know, as well as an anthology of the band's past work — all while putting out an inter-related trilogy of new studio albums.

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Song Travels
2:05 pm
Fri April 19, 2013

Bette Midler On 'Song Travels'

"In a way, I use music like we use the Internet," Bette Midler says. "One link brings you to another link, and from that link you move onto another.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat April 20, 2013 10:09 am

The Divine Miss M — singer, actress and comedian Bette Midler — is Song Travels host Michael Feinstein's guest for an hour of pure radio fun. Midler opens a crate of favorite tunes from her record collection, from Louis Jordan to vintage Hawaiian music to Destiny's Child, along with stories from her multifaceted career.

Here, Feinstein presents her with a solo arrangement of "And I'll Be There," a song written for her by the legendary songwriting team of Alan and Marilyn Bergman.

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NPR Story
2:03 pm
Fri April 19, 2013

Esperanza Spalding On Piano Jazz

Esperanza Spalding.
Johann Sauty Courtesy of the artist

On this Piano Jazz from 2008, bassist and singer Esperanza Spalding brings her neo-soul style to a set of standards with the aid of pianist Leo Genovese. Spalding is one of the most talked about artists in jazz today.

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Mountain Stage
2:00 pm
Fri April 19, 2013

Shovels And Rope On Mountain Stage

Shovels and Rope performs live on Mountain Stage.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 9:59 am

Shovels and Rope makes its first-ever appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W.Va. South Carolina natives Michael Trent and Cary Ann Hearst began playing music together in 2010, and in the years since, they've won the hearts of many roots-music fans, thanks in no small part to the married couple's heartfelt songwriting and passionate live performances.

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