WUIS Xponential

Monkey See
8:35 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Pete Seeger And The Public Choir

Pete Seeger performs during a concert marking his 90th birthday at Madison Square Garden in New York on May 3, 2009.
Timothy A. Clary AFP/Getty Images

Much will be said and has been said about Pete Seeger, who died Monday at 94, as an activist and musician. Blacklisted, tireless, stubborn, and funny, he wrote a lot of songs that seem to have simply always existed: "Where Have All The Flowers Gone?", "If I Had A Hammer," "Turn, Turn, Turn."

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The Two-Way
5:54 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Pete Seeger, Folk Music Icon And Activist, Dies At 94

Pete Seeger closes out the 2011 Newport Folk Festival.
Anna Webber WireImage

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 10:00 am

  • On 'Morning Edition': A look back at Pete Seeger's life, from former NPR newscaster Paul Brown

Pete Seeger, "a tireless campaigner for his own vision of a utopia marked by peace and togetherness," died Monday at the age of 94.

As former NPR broadcaster Paul Brown adds in an appreciation he prepared for Morning Edition, Seeger's tools "were his songs, his voice, his enthusiasm and his musical instruments."

The songs he'll be long remembered for include "If I Had a Hammer," "Turn, Turn, Turn" and "Where Have All the Flowers Gone."

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Remembrances
4:02 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Folk Activist Pete Seeger, Icon Of Passion And Ideals, Dies At 94

Pete Seeger was an environmentalist, an activist and the most prominent folk musician of his generation.
Neilson Barnard Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 1:21 pm

A tireless campaigner for his own vision of a utopia marked by peace and togetherness, Pete Seeger's tools were his songs, his voice, his enthusiasm and his musical instruments. A major advocate for the folk-style five-string banjo and one of the most prominent folk music icons of his generation, Seeger was also a political and environmental activist. He died Monday at age 94. His grandson, Kitama Cahill Jackson, said he died of natural causes.

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Music Interviews
4:17 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

Return Of The Robots: Daft Punk Talk Their Grammy-Winning Album

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 6:56 pm

On Sunday night, Daft Punk took home the top Grammy Awards — both for their hit single "Get Lucky" and its parent album, Random Access Memories. But if you were hoping to catch a glimpse of the faces behind their masks or hear the voices of the French electronic act, you were out of luck. Their collaborators spoke for them. Last year, though, the "robots" spoke with us about their work. In honor of their big wins, we revisit that interview.

World Cafe
3:59 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

World Cafe Next: The Districts

The Districts.
Caitlin McCann Courtesy of the artist

The Districts started out as a high-school band in Lititz, Penn. After some wise touring that included a SXSW visit last year — as well as a video with more than 300,000 views — the group now has a self-titled EP due out Tuesday on a national label. You can download two of the folk-pop band's catchy songs on the World Cafe: Next podcast.

The Record
3:13 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

Collaborations And Congratulations: Navigating The Grammy Crossover

Kendrick Lamar and Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons onstage during the 56th Grammy Awards.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

At the beginning of the 2014 Grammy Awards show, it seemed that one story would dominate the night. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, the Seattle duo whose highly accessible take on hip-hop became last year's indie-to-mainstream success story, took home three awards during the ceremony's pre-telecast portion.

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World Cafe
2:17 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

Foxygen On World Cafe

Foxygen.
Angel Ceballos Courtesy of the artist

In a segment from January of last year — around the time they released their successful debut, We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic — Foxygen's Jonathan Rado and Sam France turn up on World Cafe to perform and discuss songs from their album together.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
2:02 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

Angel Olsen: Tiny Desk Concert

NPR

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 8:40 am

Angel Olsen came to the Tiny Desk on an odd autumn day, as an impending storm loomed outside our office windows. It all seemed just right for occasion: Watch her and you'll see calm in her eyes; listen to her and you'll sense torment in her heart. Olsen gave us a preview of her third record on that October day; she wouldn't tell us the title, but she did say the word "Burn" with a hint of the title in the words to a song she'd sing.

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Deceptive Cadence
10:10 am
Mon January 27, 2014

New Music Shines at Classical Grammy Awards

Composer and bandleader Maria Schneider accepts her Grammy Award. Her album Winter Morning Walks earned three awards yesterday at the pre-telecast Grammy ceremony in Los Angeles.
Michael Buckner Getty Images

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 2:52 pm

"New classical music is well and alive," Brad Wells, director of the vocal collective Roomful of Teeth, said yesterday as he accepted his Grammy for Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance.

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Favorite Sessions
7:02 am
Mon January 27, 2014

KEXP Presents: Helmet

Helmet's Page Hamilton peforms live in KEXP's studio in Seattle.
Beth Crook KEXP

Originally published on Mon July 7, 2014 12:41 pm

Not sure if it's a compliment to be called a "thinking man's metal band" — if nothing else, it's not so nice to the other metal bands — but Helmet has always made smart music that never loses its punch. Singer and guitarist Page Hamilton founded the group back in 1989, and since then it's gone through the usual motions of a successful band: early attention leading to a label signing, a series of albums that grow more critically acclaimed but sell less than expected, band dissolution and breakup, subsequent solo work and collaborations, and an eventual reboot.

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Music News
3:55 am
Mon January 27, 2014

Grammy Show: Light On Awards, Heavy On Entertainment

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 2:51 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Well, let's move from the pre-telecast to the artists you did see on TV, if you were watching; the winners and nominees who were on stage at the Staples Center for a marathon evening ceremony. NPR television critic Eric Deggans joins us to talk about the big show.

Good morning.

ERIC DEGGANS, BYLINE: Good morning.

MONTAGNE: First, let me ask you this. With most of the awards given out actually before the ceremony, the Grammys - unlike the Oscars - are not really an awards show. What would you call it?

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The Record
11:33 pm
Sun January 26, 2014

Daft Punk, Lorde And Macklemore Win Major Grammy Awards

Daft Punk won the Grammy for Album of the Year for Random Access Memories and for Record of the Year for "Get Lucky."
Frederic J. Brown AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 14, 2014 11:29 am

French dance music producers Daft Punk won Album of the Year for Random Access Memories and Record of the Year for their hit "Get Lucky" at the 56th annual Grammy awards on Sunday night. In a ceremony heavy on collaborative performances (Robin Thicke with Chicago, Kendrick Lamar with Imagine Dragons and Metallica with Lang Lang were a few of the more random pairings) and light on surprise, no single artist dominated.

Read The Complete List Of Winners

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First Listen
10:02 pm
Sun January 26, 2014

First Listen: Marissa Nadler, 'July'

Marissa Nadler's new album, July, comes out Feb. 4.
Courtney B. Hall Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue February 4, 2014 9:23 am

On her sixth album, Boston-born singer-songwriter Marissa Nadler gets darker than ever before: Its title must refer to a cold, polarizing kind of July, with the frigid climes that accompany an early-February release.

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First Listen
10:02 pm
Sun January 26, 2014

First Listen: Gina Chavez, 'Up.Rooted'

Gina Chavez's new album, Up.Rooted, comes out Feb. 15.
Judson Baker Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue February 11, 2014 10:14 am

Gina Chavez's voice stops you in your tracks the first time you hear it. At least that's how it worked for me when I came upon her performance during South by Southwest a few years ago. She was playing a semi-acoustic set on a sunlit patio above a busy sports bar — a setting not exactly conducive to her intimate songwriting.

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First Listen
10:02 pm
Sun January 26, 2014

First Listen: CEO, 'Wonderland'

CEO's new album, Wonderland, comes out Feb. 4.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue February 4, 2014 9:21 am

The first thing you'll hear when listening to CEO's Wonderland is a sample from 2010's Feathered Cocaine, a documentary about the secret funding of al Qaeda as told through the experiences of an American falconer. The second and third things you'll hear are childlike yelps and music that could be the soundtrack to some John Hughes end credits. This song is called "Whorehouse." There is no better way to introduce yourself to the mind of Eric Berglund, the sole proprietor of CEO.

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First Listen
10:02 pm
Sun January 26, 2014

First Listen: Robert Ellis, 'The Lights From The Chemical Plant'

Robert Ellis' new album, The Lights From the Chemical Plant, comes out Feb.11.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue February 11, 2014 10:13 am

The quality of mystery is undervalued in music these days. It's often mimicked via indecipherable lyrics, mumbled vocals or spooky sound effects, but that's not the real stuff. Rarely does anyone touch upon that delicate, open-ended state of unknowing that can descend on any given day, whether you're locked in a lover's embrace or just sitting in front of the television.

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First Listen
10:02 pm
Sun January 26, 2014

First Listen: 'Sweetheart 2014'

Sweetheart 2014 comes out Feb. 4.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue February 4, 2014 9:21 am

Compiled by Starbucks every few years, the Sweetheart compilations adhere to a simple concept in which well-liked contemporary artists cover well-liked classic love songs just in time for Valentine's Day. But, more importantly, the collections revolve around a refreshing and consistent mindset: There are no arch piss-takes, no goofs, no skirting sincerity with a wink and a sneer. Even when an effort feels like a minor pairing or a failed experiment, goodwill carries the day.

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First Listen
10:02 pm
Sun January 26, 2014

First Listen: Jeremy Messersmith, 'Heart Murmurs'

Jeremy Messersmith's new album, Heart Murmurs, comes out Feb. 4.
Kyle Dean Reinford Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue February 4, 2014 9:22 am

Minneapolis singer-songwriter Jeremy Messersmith sings sweet, timeless songs about love, desire, death and grief — not, it would seem, the stuff of grandiose artistic ambition. And yet Messersmith stands out by trying harder, doing more and always reaching farther than it seems.

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Music Interviews
4:21 pm
Sun January 26, 2014

David Crosby: 'Serve The Song,' Not The Self

David Crosby's new solo album, his first such release in two decades, is called Croz.
Buzz Person Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun January 26, 2014 5:20 pm

David Crosby may have one of the most cherished voices in rock history, but it's rare for listeners to hear it alone. His new solo studio album, Croz, is only his fourth such release in more than 50 years of making music.

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The Record
11:22 am
Sun January 26, 2014

The Woman Behind The Curtain, Making Good Songs Sound Great

Mastering engineer Emily Lazar poses with producer Scott Jacoby (top right) and members of the band School is Cool at her Manhattan studio, The Lodge.
The Lodge

Originally published on Sun January 26, 2014 11:47 am

Mastering engineer Emily Lazar listens back to a section of the song "Envelop Me" by the baroque pop band School is Cool. She's trying to make the main vocals stand out more.

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The Two-Way
7:19 am
Sun January 26, 2014

5 Things To Know About The Grammy Awards Show

Jay-Z performs during his Magna Carta World Tour at Connecticut's Mohegan Sun Arena earlier this month. Jay Z has nine nominations at this year's Grammys.
Anthony Nesmith CSM /Landov

Originally published on Sun January 26, 2014 1:27 pm

The 56th annual Grammy Awards will air Sunday on CBS beginning at 8 p.m. ET. The Los Angeles Times says:

"[The] Grammy Awards show is chock-full of star-studded performances. And like every year, the performances are all about the collaborations.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:08 am
Sun January 26, 2014

94 Years After Her Death, Maud Powell Finally Wins A Grammy

Originally published on Sun January 26, 2014 8:20 am

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Music Interviews
4:04 pm
Sat January 25, 2014

Angélique Kidjo Shares The 'Shiver' Of Hearing A Beautiful Voice

Angélique Kidjo's new album, Eve, showcases the voices of women from Kenya and her home country of Benin.
Pierre Marie Zimmerman Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat January 25, 2014 6:53 pm

Grammy-winning artist Angélique Kidjo is one of the biggest names in African music, and at 53, she's still moving at the speed of light. Her latest album, Eve, is out Tuesday and includes collaborations with some fellow stars: Kronos Quartet, the Luxembourg Philharmonic and Dr. John.

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Around the Nation
4:23 am
Sat January 25, 2014

Artist Transforms Guns To Make Music — Literally

Mexican artist Pedro Reyes received 6,700 weapons from the Mexican government, from which he sculpted instruments.
Peter Macdiarmid Getty Images

Originally published on Sat January 25, 2014 11:14 am

Pedro Reyes says being Mexican is like living in an apartment where an upstairs neighbor has a leaking swimming pool.

"Just what is leaking," says Reyes, "is hundreds of thousands of guns."

He wants people to think about the availability of guns in the United States, and the impact that has in Mexico.

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Music News
1:02 am
Sat January 25, 2014

Reinventing The Music Video, One Street Corner At A Time

The American band San Fermin performs an informal "Take Away Show" in a Chinese restaurant in Paris — part of a series of videos produced by the French website La Blogothéque.
Christopher Werth Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat January 25, 2014 11:14 am

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The Record
4:22 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

How The Organization Behind The Grammys Spends The Other 364 Days

Recording Academy President and CEO Neil Portnow, host LL Cool J and Executive Vice President of Specials, Music and Live Events at CBS Entertainment Jack Sussman pose at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Jan. 23, a few days before the 2014 Grammy Awards.
Kevin Winter WireImage

Originally published on Fri January 24, 2014 6:29 pm

This Sunday's Grammy Awards ceremony is the annual big-ticket item for the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. More than 28 million people around the world tuned in to watch the concert show last year. And this year's telecast is once again being touted as the most complicated — and expensive — production on TV.

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World Cafe
2:31 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Unknown Mortal Orchestra On World Cafe

Unknown Mortal Orchestra.
Courtesy of the artist

Unknown Mortal Orchestra is the work of Ruban Nielson, a New Zealand-bred musician who moved to Portland, Ore., six years ago. While there, he started working with samples in his bedroom that would later become the first Unknown Mortal Orchestra album in 2011. He released another in 2013, called II, as well as an EP.

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Alt.Latino
2:20 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

With Guitars Like Machetes: Son Jarocho 101

Alec Dempster is a Mexican artist living in Toronto. Many of his pieces focus on Son Jarocho.
Alec Dempster courtesy of the artist.

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Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
1:48 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Jim Hall On Piano Jazz

Jim Hall.
Frans Schellekens Redferns

Widely admired as a gifted and innovative player, jazz guitarist Jim Hall had a career that spanned more than five decades. In a session recorded in 2003, the NEA Jazz Master teamed up with host Marian McPartland and bassist Gary Mazzaroppi for "Blue Monk," and performed solo in "All the Things You Are."

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Song Travels
11:45 am
Fri January 24, 2014

Jitterbug Vipers On 'Song Travels'

Jitterbug Vipers.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 8:24 am

Jitterbug Vipers' members perform 1930s-style "viper jazz" with a rock 'n' roll twist. The Austin band's original music — crafted by singer Sarah Sharp, guitarist Slim Richey, bassist Francie Meaux Jeaux and drummer Masumi Jones — recalls swing classics by Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Cab Calloway.

On this installment of Song Travels, you can hear Jitterbug Vipers perform a set live in the studio. Host Michael Feinstein also sits down with Sharp to discuss the history of viper jazz and the inspiration behind the band's sizzling original music.

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