Despers USA practices on a big parking lot off Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn, N.Y. Band members start wandering in around 6 or 7 p.m. and slowly take their places behind racks of steel drums. Like a symphony orchestra, they're organized by section — the thin tenors ringed around the outside; the big, deep, oil-drum basses toward the center; the midrange "guitars," as they're called, nearby.
Their section leader counts them in. He stops them, and then stops them again, saying the opening needs to be stronger. Eventually, they get it.
Frederic Yonnet is known for bringing the harmonica to urban jazz, R&B and hip-hop. He's working on the album Reed My Lips: The Rough Cut. It's available as a digital download, but the final mix will be out next year with suggested changes from fans. Yonnet joins host Michel Martin for a special encore performance chat.
A pioneer who muddies the waters separating jazz, blues, country, soul and rock, Cassandra Wilson possesses a beautiful voice and more than three decades of musical experience. The two-time Grammy winner began her career with the M-base collective, but found success as a solo jazz singer.
Power-pop icon Matthew Sweet returns to Mountain Stage, recorded live in Charleston, W.V. To music fans who spent time watching MTV or listening to FM radio in the fall of 1991, Sweet needs no introduction: His song "Girlfriend," along with its innovative video, was inescapable — and, most importantly, sounded like nothing else on the airwaves at the time.
Originally published on Wed October 24, 2012 1:26 pm
It's not all that often anymore that sexism and female objectification are so revoltingly obvious, but then someone dreams up something like this: a leering and condescending interview in the Scottish Sun with violinist Nicola Benedetti. (I don't really want to give the Sun any credence with more page views, but this one has to be read to be believed.)