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Maybe we have jumped the gun. We very badly want G.O.O.D. Fridays back (we're not alone). Surprise releases are fun and everything, but the build of a month(s)-long stretch is better. We would like to talk about music together, and not only by collectively spazzing out and crashing Livemixtapes. We would like to Monday morning quarterback the art and announcement punctuation and where we heard it over the weekend and the context and the song itself.

Eric Bachmann has reinvented himself several times in the last quarter-century: After breaking through in the '90s, with the jagged, sneering indie rock of Archers Of Loaf — and releasing an album of rock instrumentals as Barry Black — Bachmann took on the name Crooked Fingers, which he's used for solo works, experiments and full-band explorations.

Like any music, jazz has its revolutions; its sudden incidents in infrastructure; its disruptive presences of unprecedented sound. Mostly it's slower than that, though, with years and generations of accretions before it seems to call for new vocabulary. That's one way to look at Winter Jazzfest, whose latest incarnation occupied a dozen or so venues in downtown New York City last weekend. In a decade and a half of steady growth, a one-night showcase oriented toward industry insiders has become nearly a weeklong landmark of the city's cultural calendar.

World Cafe Presents: 'Side Tracks'

Jan 19, 2016

Welcome to a week of World Cafe "Side Tracks," where we look back on past guests that came in for a session — not with their best-known band, but with a side project. In each session, we speak to the artists about juggling both acts and the origin story of their "other band." Stream the complete sessions below.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Charles Lloyd is a jazz elder with a wide-angle view of the world. The 77-year-old tenor saxophonist begins his new album with a cover of Bob Dylan's "Masters Of War."

(SOUNDBITE OF CHARLES LLOYD AND THE MARVELS SONG, "MASTERS OF WAR")

This immensely talented band from Asheville, N.C., was my favorite discovery at this year's Americana Music Festival. River Whyless builds its music around fiddle, guitar and harmonies, with imagination and textures that set the band apart from many of its acoustic and folk-based peers.

You know his voice, playing the title roles on the animated TV series Bob's Burgers and Archer, not to mention a can of vegetables in the movie Wet Hot American Summer.

But none of that is why the 20-year comedy veteran Jon Benjamin spoke with All Things Considered. Instead, it was for the most "public radio" of reasons: He has recorded an experimental jazz album.

World Cafe Next: Eliza Hardy Jones

Jan 19, 2016

Eliza Hardy Jones has been a fixture on the Philadelphia music scene for years. She was part of the duo Buried Beds in the early 2000s, and has lent assistance on tour with other bands, including Strand Of Oaks. Jones' solo debut, Because Become, is a mature pop album she made with longtime producer Nick Krill, as well as Dave Hartley (who worked with The War On Drugs) and Brian McTear.

Failure has always been a favorite topic of Texas troubadour Hayes Carll. Much of the songwriting catalog he's built up over the last dozen-plus years revolves around dashed dreams, doomed romance and drunken predicaments. Very often, though, he's leavened the losing with cleverly deployed gallows humor, self-deprecation and yarn spinning, linking his work to his native state's tradition of wryly winning musical wit, a writing trait he shares with Guy Clark, Robert Earl Keen, Lyle Lovett and even Miranda Lambert.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And now let's take a moment to remember Glenn Frey, who has died at the age of 67. His music as part of the Eagles has been part of the national soundtrack, if you will, for decades. Here's NPR's Ted Robbins.

(SOUNDBITE OF EAGLES SONG, "TAKE IT EASY")

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Glenn Frey, 67, a founding member and guitarist of The Eagles, died on Monday in New York City of complications from rheumatoid arthritis, acute ulcerative colitis and pneumonia, according to a statement on the band's official website:

"The Frey family would like to thank everyone who joined Glenn to fight this fight and hoped and prayed for his recovery. Words can neither describe our sorrow, nor our love and respect for all that he has given to us, his family, the music community & millions of fans worldwide."

It might seem unusual that a 16-year-old Taiwanese pop starlet could motivate legions of youth to troop to the polls and vote for the island's opposition party candidate. But she apparently did, and thereby helped Democratic Progressive Party leader Tsai Ing-wen become Taiwan's democratically first elected female leader.

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

Transcript

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

Shawn Amos had a Los Angeles childhood that was equal parts grit and glamor. He went to private schools and lived in a nice house, but it wasn't exactly in Mr. Rogers' neighborhood.

Tennessee Ernie Ford was fed up with the trappings of fame and the demands of the music business. It was 1955 and his label, Capitol Records, had threatened to sue him if he didn't make another record. He decided to fulfill his contract and leave. The song he ended up recording became a No. 1 hit, topping Billboard magazine's pop and country charts.

Our fondness for a song is often connected to a string of memories — when a lyric or a melody made the world feel larger, more full of possibility for a moment. When the artists who made the music are no longer with us, it can feel like a piece of that moment is lost, too.

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

Transcript

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Dave Davies sitting in for Terry Gross.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

G. Love On World Cafe

Jan 15, 2016

It was the day before Thanksgiving in 1902 when the Philadelphia Orchestra made its debut at Carnegie Hall. Music by Tchaikovsky was on the program and on the podium was Fritz Scheel, the first leader of an orchestra founded just two years before.

Front Row: The Oh Hellos, 'Dear Wormwood'

Jan 15, 2016

The title track to The Oh Hellos' 2015 album Dear Wormwood beautifully captures the spirit of an album that's all about identity. Brother-and-sister duo Tyler and Maggie Heath shaped the record's concept around the idea of a character who writes letters to a tormentor, inspired by C.S. Lewis' The Screwtape Letters.

There are very few guarantees in life. But one of them must — must! — be that as soon as you hear "Made in Tribu Baharú," you'll start moving. (I promise.) It's a song from Tribu Baharú, a band from Bogotá, Colombia — and the sextet's high-energy, abundantly joyful calls to the dance floor belie a complicated history.

For more than 10 years, fans have been drawn to Dutch singer-songwriter Benny Sings' ability to layer R&B, jazz and pop over hip-hop foundations. While it was only a matter of time before he'd play behind the Tiny Desk, we never expected the performance to be his very first in the U.S. This is also where he performed with background vocalist Jennah Bell for the first time.

Foals On World Cafe

Jan 14, 2016

Yannis Philippakis, lead singer of the U.K. indie-rock band Foals, is known for leaping off balconies at live shows. Though he didn't have the chance to stage-dive in the World Cafe studio, that didn't stop Foals from recording an amazing session of songs from the group's fourth and latest album, What Went Down.

KCRW Presents: JR JR

Jan 14, 2016

JR JR started winning us over with its catchy pop songs five years ago, when the band went by the name Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. Now, the group is starting a fresh chapter with a new name, but that doesn't stop Josh Epstein and Daniel Zott from employing an old trick in their single "Gone" — that unmistakable whistle hook.

SET LIST

  • "Gone"

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