WUIS Xponential

All Songs Considered
7:03 am
Sat April 18, 2015

The Good Listener: How Much Should I Tip A Street Musician?

Tipping is customary for good service.
iStockphoto.com

We get a lot of mail at NPR Music, and alongside bales of deep-discounted Easter candy is a slew of smart questions about how music fits into our lives — and, this week, thoughts on buskers, tipping and etiquette.

Holly R. writes via email: "How much of a tip is good for the street-side musician with a cup at his feet? What about for one playing in a bar?"

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Goats and Soda
3:59 am
Sat April 18, 2015

In 'Song Of Lahore,' A Race To Revive Pakistani Classical Music

Asad Ali, 63, was unemployed for four years when Pakistan clamped down on live music in 1977. He now plays the guitar for Sachal Studios Orchestra around the globe and in his hometown, Lahore.
Courtesy of Mobeen Ansari

Originally published on Mon April 20, 2015 9:23 am

In his home in Lahore, Pakistan, Saleem Khan holds up his late father's violin. There are no strings, the wood is scratched and the bridge is missing.

"There was a time when people used to come to Lahore from all over the world to hear its musicians," the 65-year-old violinist says in the new documentary, Song of Lahore. "Now we can't even find someone to repair our violins."

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Music News
1:03 am
Sat April 18, 2015

It's Thin, It's Plastic, It's Back: Flexi Discs Find New Fans

"In the metal community, there's a fascination with the tangible aspect of things," says Albert Mudrian, editor of metal magazine Decibel.
Bruno Guerreiro Courtesy of Decibel

Originally published on Sat April 18, 2015 9:59 am

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Music
1:03 am
Sat April 18, 2015

Singer Becca Stevens Had To 'Pull The Trigger' On Her New Album

Becca Stevens says her new album, Perfect Animal, ended up "exactly how it was meant to be."
Shervin Lainez Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat April 18, 2015 9:59 am

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The Record
3:35 pm
Fri April 17, 2015

Solving The Vinyl Comeback's Big Problem, One Antique Machine At A Time

One of the record presses on the floor at the Quality Record Pressings plant in Salina, Kan.
Courtesy of Acoustic Sounds

Saturday is Record Store Day, when independent music retailers around the country host parking-lot concerts and sell limited-edition pressings of vinyl records, which have made a small but forceful comeback in an age dominated by digital listening habits. But if there's one problem with the vinyl resurgence, it might be this: The machines that press vinyl records are decades old, and no one's building new ones, so keeping up with increased demand is hard.

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Mountain Stage
2:48 pm
Fri April 17, 2015

Caroline Rose On Mountain Stage

Caroline Rose.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Caroline Rose makes her first appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live at the historic Keith Albee Theater in Huntington, W.Va. With a sound that draws from folk, rockabilly, pop, rock and blues, the keen-eyed singer-songwriter describes her album I Will Not Be Afraid as "postcards I've picked up from along the road."

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All Songs Considered
12:15 pm
Fri April 17, 2015

All Songs Plus One: Our Record Store Day Must-Haves

Record Store Day is that magical day each spring (this year it's Saturday, April 18) when geeks like us line up outside their favorite music shops to get their hands on a bunch of vinyl exclusives. These are the albums, EPs and singles bands and labels put out just to celebrate the day.

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Song Travels
10:26 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Ginny Mancini On Song Travels

Ginny Mancini.
Phil McCarten Getty Images

Ginny Mancini performed with Mel Tormé and the Mel-Tones before marrying fellow musician, composer and conductor Henry Mancini, who died in 1994. He would have celebrated his 91st birthday on April 16. This week, Song Travels remembers Henry Mancini, as his wife shares stories of their life together, her career and Henry's remarkable contributions to American film, television and song.

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All Songs Considered
10:02 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Viking's Choice: Pygmy Lush, 'On A Plain (Nirvana Cover)'

Pygmy Lush.
Alex Christopher Williams Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue April 21, 2015 7:18 am

It took seven years for Robotic Empire to finish its tribute to Nirvana's In Utero, featuring covers by Thursday, Jay Reatard, Ceremony and Thou. With a lineup like that, it's no wonder the vinyl sold out quickly on Record Store Day.

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All Songs Considered
9:17 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Drum Fill Friday, With Jess Gowrie Of Happy Fangs

Happy Fangs drummer Jess Gowrie, getting it done.
Jen Cash Calibree Photography

Originally published on Fri April 17, 2015 2:03 pm

This week's guest Quizmaster is Jess Gowrie, drummer with the San Francisco-based band Happy Fangs. Earlier this year the group released its debut full-length, Capricorn, a collection of lean, raw and noisy guitar rock cuts anchored by Gowrie's bone-breaking beats. Given her love of power-hitters, some of the fills she selected for this week's Drum Fill Friday should come as no surprise. But there are at least a couple of unexpected picks here. As always, good luck, careful listeners!

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Tiny Desk Concerts
7:03 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Rosa Díaz: Tiny Desk Concert

Carlos Waters NPR

Originally published on Fri April 17, 2015 10:54 am

Rosa Díaz is nothing if not passionate: Her performance behind Bob Boilen's desk practically burst with the kind of passion that made it feel almost confessional. Her sophisticated lyrics reflect deeply felt emotions in this performance with cellist Daniel de Jesus.

This is the kind of performance best experienced for yourself rather than having me trying to explain it all. Believe me, you'll get it too.

Set List

  • "Beware Of Men Who Don't Remember Their Dreams"
  • "Lloronsito"
  • "Daddy Said"
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NPR Story
4:03 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Demand Increases For Vinyl Records

Originally published on Fri April 17, 2015 6:35 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

I'm David Greene, wishing you a happy Record Store Day.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "OLD TIME ROCK AND ROLL")

BOB SEGER: (Singing) Just take those old records off the shelf.

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Music
1:03 am
Fri April 17, 2015

As Joan Jett Is Inducted, Women Still Scarce At Rock Hall

Joan Jett.
Christopher Polk Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 17, 2015 9:22 am

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Music
3:39 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

Wiz Khalifa's 'See You Again' Breaks Spotify Streaming Record

Originally published on Thu April 16, 2015 6:40 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

It was streamed on Spotify 4.2 million times in just a single day this week. Last week it streamed a total of nearly 22 million times.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "SEE YOU AGAIN")

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Favorite Sessions
3:09 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

KCRW Presents: Ride

Ride performs live on KCRW.
Brian Lowe KCRW

The pioneering Oxford shoegaze band Ride had been on a 20-year break before reuniting for a world tour, which kicked off in earnest at the Coachella Music and Arts Festival this month. Before heading to the desert, the group chose KCRW for its first U.S. appearance since getting back together. During its set, Ride soared through classic songs like 1992's "Leave Them All Behind," which would come to help define the shoegaze sound.

SET LIST

  • "Leave Them All Behind"
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Microphone Check
3:00 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

Hank Shocklee: 'We Had Something to Prove'

Hank Shocklee, of Public Enemy's production team The Bomb Squad, in Austin, Texas for an interview with Microphone Check.
Mito Habe-Evans NPR

Originally published on Sun April 19, 2015 9:07 pm

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Music Interviews
2:03 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

The Story Behind Mark Ronson's Hit Song 'Uptown Funk'

Mark Ronson is a music producer, DJ and guitarist who's recorded with Adele, Paul McCartney, Ghostface Killah, Lily Allen and Duran Duran, among others.
Astrid Stawiarz Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 16, 2015 3:43 pm

When singer Bruno Mars and producer Mark Ronson first landed on the instrumental track and a few lines of what would become the hit song "Uptown Funk," Ronson says the room was filled with electricity.

"There's nothing more exciting than that period of the song, because the potential is unlimited," Ronson tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross.

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Music Interviews
1:59 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

In Compton, Boogie Just Wants To Empower His Neighborhood

Boogie.
Jack Wagner Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu April 16, 2015 6:40 pm

On the surface, Boogie's got the kind of backstory often told in hip-hop: The child of a single mom and an absent father, a high-school dropout, a former gang member. He's from Compton, Calif., home to N.W.A, The Game and Kendrick Lamar. It's the birthplace of gangsta rap, but for Boogie, "It's about me showing my friends and homies that we can honestly make a change."

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All Songs Considered
1:38 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

Songs We Love: Wolf Alice, 'Bros'

Wolf Alice
Jordan Curtis Hughes

Originally published on Tue April 21, 2015 12:38 pm

The North London rock group Wolf Alice has been picking up steam this year with a potent mix of vintage '90s rock, electronics and moody atmospherics. It's a sound that both shimmers and glowers — part The Sundays, part Smashing Pumpkins.

Wolf Alice dances along this line memorably on "Bros," the latest cut from the band's upcoming full length debut My Love Is Cool. Propelled by lead singer Ellie Rowsell's stirring voice, the song is a celebratory but wistful reflection on the waning years of youth.

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Alt.Latino
12:43 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

'I Could Fall In Love': Selena's Legacy, 20 Years Later

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Originally published on Thu April 16, 2015 2:08 pm

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All Songs Considered
11:51 am
Thu April 16, 2015

Highasakite, 'Heavenly Father'

Norwegian band Highasakite covers Bon Iver's "Heavenly Father."
Aleksander Jason Courtesy of the Artist

Originally published on Tue April 21, 2015 12:38 pm

When Bon Iver's Justin Vernon saw Norway's Highasakite perform at the 2012 Oya Festival in Oslo, he fell in love. Soon the two bands were touring together. Now the only band I know that tours with a flugabone has taken one of Vernon's songs and made it even more majestic than the original.

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World Cafe
11:32 am
Thu April 16, 2015

Nora Jane Struthers On World Cafe

Nora Jane Struthers.
Courtesy of the artist

Nora Jane Struthers might never have become a professional musician were it not for a moment of euphoria at the Telluride Bluegrass Festival. Struthers had gone to school to study education — and was actually working as a teacher in Brooklyn — when she turned around to face away from the stage at Telluride. When she saw the crowd and the mountains, she decided to follow her heart and head to Nashville to make music.

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Mountain Stage
11:20 am
Thu April 16, 2015

Allen Toussaint On Mountain Stage

Allen Toussaint.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Allen Toussaint appears on Mountain Stage, recorded live at the historic Keith Albee Theater in Huntington, W.Va. A New Orleans R&B institution, Toussaint has worn every musical hat there is to wear — and, along the way, is as responsible as any one person for that classic Crescent City sound.

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All Songs Considered
9:34 am
Thu April 16, 2015

Viking's Choice: Radioactivity, 'Silent'

Radioactivity includes members of The Marked Men, Mind Spiders and Bad Sports.
Courtesy of the artist

After two decades in punk rock, Jeff Burke still writes songs with the ecstatic energy of a kid picking up a guitar for the first time. Among the Denton, Texas, guitarist and singer's several bands, the most beloved is the currently dormant The Marked Men, which is why the similar sensibility of Radioactivity's self-titled 2013 album was such a welcome surprise. With guitarist/vocalist Mark Ryan (Mind Spiders) in tow, it was essentially The Marked Men 2.0.

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Music Reviews
3:59 pm
Wed April 15, 2015

Review: Razia Said, 'Akory'

Originally published on Wed April 15, 2015 5:52 pm

Imagine a country where most of the people are under 14 years old. Madagascar singer Razia Said lives in the U.S., but her songs tackle the challenges the African island nation faces. Music critic Banning Eyre says her latest album Akory prods the nation's leaders with bold questions.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Thistle & Shamrock
3:49 pm
Wed April 15, 2015

The Thistle & Shamrock: Time To Dance

Dance to the music of Alasdair Fraser on this week's show.
Courtesy of the artist

The rhythms of Celtic music will always reach your feet, and then you're dancing. Limber up and tune in for music by Alasdair Fraser, Trian and a pair of traditional dance bands from Ireland and Scotland.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

World Cafe
3:33 pm
Wed April 15, 2015

Greg Holden On World Cafe

Greg Holden.
Myriam Santos Courtesy of the artist

Greg Holden isn't a name everyone knows — at least not yet — but his work has reached a massive audience. His song "Home" was a massive hit for American Idol winner Phillip Phillips a few years ago.

A U.K. singer-songwriter, Holden put out his own crowd-financed album in 2012, and is now making his major-label debut with Chase The Sun. On this episode of World Cafe, he performs a few songs and tells the story of how he took the money he made from "Home" to finance a backpacking trip to India.

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All Songs Considered
3:23 pm
Wed April 15, 2015

Songs We Love: Algiers, 'Black Eunuch'

Algiers' self-titled debut album is out June 2.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue April 21, 2015 12:43 pm

If I had to pick one new band that you should absolutely listen to, it's Algiers, three young men who grew up in Atlanta. Sonically, they make really eerie gospel music that's a rock-inspired amalgamation of all different stuff. In "Black Eunuch," you can hear the sounds of both black and white churches of the South and great guitars. Though they now live in London and New York, their roots are definitely southern based and their lyrics deal with the conservative politics of where they grew up. I've never seen them before and they're completely new to me.

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The Record
2:03 pm
Wed April 15, 2015

A Rational Conversation With Mac McCaughan And Waxahatchee

Superchunk frontman and Merge Records co-founder Mac McCaughan (left) will put out his first album under his own name next month. Katie Crutchfield just put out her third album as Waxahatchee on Merge.
Lissa Gotwals/Jesse Riggins Courtesy of Merge Records

Originally published on Thu April 16, 2015 11:30 am

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Front Row
11:12 am
Wed April 15, 2015

Alabama Shakes, Live In Concert

Alabama Shakes performed a First Listen Live at Apogee Studio in Los Angeles for KCRW and NPR Music.
KCRW

Originally published on Mon April 20, 2015 11:06 pm

The Alabama Shakes performed a First Listen Live of the band's new album, Sound & Color, on Monday night at Apogee Studio in Los Angeles. We'll have the entire concert video for you on April 27, but in the meantime, watch Brittany Howard and her crew tear through "Dunes" and "Future People," two of the best songs on the new album.

Set List

  • "Dunes"
  • "Future People"

Pages