Originally published on Sat January 3, 2015 12:06 pm
The Stratocaster At 40
Quick: Name an American product that's had a worldwide impact, is more popular than ever, yet still looks the same as it did when it was introduced more than a half-century ago? Here's a hint: It might be the only musical instrument whose fame rivals that of the people who've played it.
Travel into the traditions of midwinter through some spellbinding music of the season. You'll hear a number of selections appropriate for this darkest time of the year, including music from Irish choral group Anúna with the Ulster Orchestra.
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Guitarist Mimi Fox is in the vanguard of invigorating the jazz guitar tradition. She possesses a pure tone and an amazing set of chops and cooks whether playing bebop or ballads.
Her compositional abilities are evident on this 2006 Piano Jazz as she plays her own tune "Perpetually Hip." With host Marian McPartland on piano and Gary Mazzaroppi on bass, Fox tears up the fret board on "What is This Thing Called Love."
Originally published on Wed January 7, 2015 12:11 pm
After all the time we've spent looking back at the best music of 2014, it is finally time to explore some of the releases we can look forward to over the first few months of 2015. NPR Music's pop critic Ann Powers keeps her eyes on wide range of music; she helps us understand the middle and explore the edges.