Robin Hilton

Robin Hilton is the producer and co-host for the popular NPR Music show All Songs Considered.

In addition to his work on All Songs, Hilton produces NPR Music live concerts and festival coverage across the country, including live broadcasts and webcasts from the Bonnaroo and Sasquatch festivals, South by Southwest and the Newport Folk Festival.

Prior to joining NPR in 2000, Hilton co-founded Small Good Thing Productions, a non-profit production company for independent film, radio and music in Athens, GA.

Hilton lived and worked in Japan as a translator for the government, and taught English as a second language to junior high school students.

From 1989 to 1996, Hilton worked for NPR member stations KANU and WUGA as a senior producer and assistant news director and was a long-time contributing reporter to NPR's daily news programs All Things Considered and Morning Edition.

Hilton is a multi-instrumentalist and composer. His original scores have appeared in work from National Geographic, Center Stage and, most recently, in the documentary film Open Secret. You can hear some of his music here.

Along the way, Hilton worked as an emergency room orderly, a blackjack dealer and a fruitcake factory assembly lineman.

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All Songs Considered
12:20 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross Share Four Songs From Their New 'Gone Girl' Score

Courtesy of the artist

Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor and producer Atticus Ross continue to tease their upcoming soundtrack for the movie, Gone Girl. The longtime collaborators have posted four new songs from the score to their Soundcloud page.

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All Songs Considered
9:26 am
Fri September 19, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, For Sept. 19

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 9:49 am

We're back to basics in this week's Drum Fill Friday: No tricks or special themes, just a mix of vintage rock and iconic pop fills (okay, and one intro). Good luck, careful listeners!

As always, if you have a drummer or a fill you'd like to see featured in these weekly puzzlers, let us know in the comments section or via Twitter @allsongs, #drumfillfriday.

All Songs TV
3:26 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Chris Staples, 'Hold Onto Something'

Chris Staples in his new video "Hold Onto Something"
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed September 24, 2014 10:42 am

In our darkest hours, time seems to slow to an excruciating crawl. The mind races, desperate to find something to hold onto, while our whole sense of time, space, or even reality becomes warped. It's an unsettling but familiar feeling captured beautifully in a new video for the Chris Staples song "Hold Onto Something."

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All Songs TV
1:02 pm
Wed September 17, 2014

YAWN, 'Flytrap'

A scene from Yawn's video for the song "Flytrap."
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu September 18, 2014 3:28 pm

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All Songs Considered
7:03 am
Fri September 12, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, With Spoon's Jim Eno

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 11:39 am

Jim Eno is a less-is-more drummer. His work as the longtime drummer for the band Spoon is distinctive for its carefully plotted lines. It's elegant and melodic, never over-the-top or showy. It's a style and taste he shares with all of the drummers he selected for this week's puzzler as our guest Quizmaster.

Eno and the rest of the guys in Spoon are currently on tour for their latest — and one of the year's best — album, They Want My Soul.

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Drum Fill Friday
8:42 am
Fri September 5, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, For Sept. 5

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 11:44 am

We've had a good run of guest Quizmasters for Drum Fill Friday (and more to come), but this week we thought we'd feature a puzzler made up entirely of your favorite fills and intros. Each of the artists appearing in the quiz below come from listener suggestions in our comments section.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
4:38 am
Sat August 30, 2014

Sturgill Simpson: Tiny Desk Concert

Tiny Desk Concert with Sturgill Simpson on July 8, 2014.
Sarah Tilotta NPR

Sturgill Simpson doesn't fit today's common image of a country singer. When he arrived for his Tiny Desk Concert, the 36-year-old Kentucky native sauntered in sleepy-eyed, wearing jeans, a pair of old canvas tennis shoes, no socks and a well-worn button-down blue shirt, one of only two identical shirts he said he had in rotation while on tour. (He appeared a few nights later on Letterman wearing either the same garment or its twin.)

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All Songs Considered
11:00 am
Fri August 29, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, From Guest Quizmaster Mark Reznicek Of Toadies

Mark Reznicek of Toadies
Tommy Moore Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 11:44 am

This week's puzzler comes courtesy Mark Reznicek, drummer for the Fort Worth rock group Toadies. The band is currently celebrating the 20th anniversary of its breakout album, Rubberneck with a tour, and a reissue of the album with bonus tracks.

As always, if you know a fill (or intro) or drummer you'd love to see featured in this game, let us know in the comments section, or via Twitter @allsongs, #drumfillfriday. Good luck, careful listeners!

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All Songs TV
12:53 pm
Thu August 28, 2014

Electric Youth, 'A Real Hero (Live)'

Singer Bronwyn Griffin of the band Electric Youth, in a scene from the group's new video for the song "A Real Hero."
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri August 29, 2014 12:04 pm

Canadian synth pop duo Electric Youth won legions of fans for its song "A Real Hero" after it was featured in the 2011 dark crime film Drive. Originally a duo, soundscape artist and drummer Austin Garrick and singer Bronwyn Griffin are at the center of a four-piece in this video, the first-ever video of the group performing the song.

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All Songs TV
12:56 pm
Wed August 27, 2014

The Both, 'Volunteers of America'

Ted Leo and Aimee Mann as The Both, in a scene from their new video for the song "Volunteers Of America."
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu August 28, 2014 4:09 pm

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Music
2:55 pm
Tue August 26, 2014

Maps, 'You Will Find A Way'

Maps, 'You Will Find A Way'
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed August 27, 2014 12:59 pm

What separates us from machines? Is it our capacity for love? Our seemingly bottomless well of cruelty? A new video for the Maps song "You Will Find A Way" poses these questions as a cardboard robot, built by a lonely girl, comes to life and goes out in search of companionship.

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All Songs Considered
2:22 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, From The Dismemberment Plan's Joe Easley

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 11:44 am

This week's puzzler comes courtesy Joe Easley, drummer for the D.C.-based rock group The Dismemberment Plan. It shouldn't be too hard for fans of the band to hear why he loves the fills and intros he selected from some of his favorite artists and songs.

The Dismemberment Plan is currently performing select shows for its latest album, and first in more than a decade, Uncanney Valley.

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All Songs Considered
11:13 am
Fri August 8, 2014

Song Premiere: Electric Würms, 'I Could Only See Clouds'

Electric Wurms
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed October 29, 2014 11:16 am

Flaming Lips frontman Wayne Coyne and secret weapon Steven Drozd are back with another song from their side project Electric Würms. The polyrhythmic, prog-rock space jam "I Could Only See Clouds" is from the band's upcoming debut album Musik, Die Shwer Zu Twerk, which roughly translates to "Music That's Hard To Twerk To."

Coyne, who normally fronts Flaming Lips, plays bass with Electric Würms, while Drozd takes lead on vocals, guitars and keys. The Nashville-based psych-rock band Linear Downfall provides backup.

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All Songs Considered
6:53 am
Fri August 1, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, From Guest Quizmaster Matt Sokol Of Spillway

Guest Quizmaster Matt Sokol is the drummer for the Connecticut-based rock band Spillway.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri August 1, 2014 9:57 am

The drum fills and intros for this week's puzzler have something in common. In addition to being selected by Spillway drummer Matt Sokol, they're all performed by open-handed drummers. This means they play the hi-hat cymbal with their left hand, while their right hand plays the snare. (Most drummers cross their right hand over their left to play the hi-hat). If you're up on your open-handed drummers (Matt Sokol is an open-handed drummer himself), this week's puzzler will be a breeze! If not, well ... you might find some of these to be pretty challenging. Good luck, fellow fillers!

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All Songs TV
10:34 am
Wed July 30, 2014

Sylvan Esso Performs 'Wolf' Live With Megafaun, Lambchop, Others

Sylvan Esso's Amelia Meath
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 11:07 am

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All Songs TV
11:32 am
Mon July 28, 2014

Allah-Las, 'No Werewolf'

Allah-Las
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue July 29, 2014 7:51 pm

At first glance, there's not much to the new video for the song "No Werewolf," from the Los Angeles garage rock band Allah-Las. But the longer you watch, the more mesmerizing it becomes.

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All Songs Considered
9:05 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, With Interpol's Sam Fogarino

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 11:45 am

This week's guest Quizmaster is Sam Fogarino, drummer for the band Interpol. The group is set to release its latest album, El Pintor, in September. It's Interpol's first new record since 2010's self-titled release. Can you identify the songs he selected from just a few seconds of drumming?

As always, if you know a fill (or intro) or drummer you'd love to see featured in this game, let us know in the comments section, or via Twitter @allsongs, #drumfillfriday. Good luck, careful listeners!

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All Songs Considered
7:53 am
Fri July 18, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, For July 18

This week's puzzler for careful listeners has a little something for everyone, from jazz and classic rock, to punk and thrashing metal. It also features several fills listeners suggested from previous puzzlers. So, as always, if you know a fill (or intro) or drummer you'd love to see featured in this game, let us know in the comments section, or via Twitter @allsongs, #drumfillfriday. Good luck, heroes!

All Songs Considered
9:55 am
Fri July 11, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, From Eternal Summers' Daniel Cundiff

Daniel Cundiff, drummer for the Roanoke rock band Eternal Summers, working up a sweat during a live performance.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 11:46 am

This week's drum fill puzzler comes courtesy of guest Quizmaster Daniel Cundiff, percussionist for the Roanoke rock band Eternal Summers. The band's latest album is The Drop Beneath.

For Drum Fill Friday, Daniel picked cuts by some of the artists who've influenced his own work over the years, from smooth jazz to new wave and noise rock. Good luck, heroes!

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All Songs TV
11:47 am
Thu July 10, 2014

Christina Vantzou, 'VHS'

A figure falls through a void in the latest video from Christina Vantzou, for the song "VHS."
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu July 10, 2014 1:18 pm

You'll want to dim the lights for this video to accompany "VHS," from composer Christina Vantzou. The title implies a primitive digital universe. But in Vantzou's world, it's more of a void — a pitch-black emptiness where a lone figure chases her own barely perceptible reflection.

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All Songs Considered
6:03 am
Fri July 4, 2014

Drum Fill Friday: Fourth Of July Edition

Bruce Springsteen belts out his hit song "Born in the USA" before a sellout crowd as he kicks off his 1985 US tour in Washington, DC.
Doug Mills Bettmann/CORBIS

This week we celebrate our nation's independence with drum fills (and one intro) from songs that say "America, we love you!" Some may be more blatantly patriotic than others, but all capture, in some way, the spirit of freedom that unites and binds us.

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All Songs TV
1:01 pm
Wed July 2, 2014

Christina Vantzou, 'Strange Symptoms'

Musician Christina Vantzou, in a scene from her new video for the song "Strange Symptoms."
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu July 10, 2014 9:20 am

The new video from composer Christina Vantzou, for the moody ambient piece "Strange Symptoms," will take you away. Vantzou's nirvana-inducing sounds emerge, bloom and fade away in less than a minute-and-a-half, as a figure stands motionless behind a curtain of slowly cascading water, her face distorted by the sun-dappled ripples.

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All Songs TV
7:39 am
Tue July 1, 2014

Broken Twin: 'No Darkness'

Majke Voss Romme, who writes and records as Broken Twin, in a scene from her new video for the song "No Darkness."
Courtesy of the artist

It's hard to see the hope that glows dimly in the vaporous sounds of Broken Twin's music. But it's there, pulsing delicately in the beautifully spare arrangements and haunting voice of singer Majke Voss Romme.

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All Songs Considered
6:03 am
Fri June 27, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, With Mike Kinsella Of Owls

This week's guest Quizmaster, drummer Mike Kinsella (Owls, Joan Of Arc, Owen, American Football)
Connor Feimster Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 7:35 am

This week's guest Quizmaster is Mike Kinsella, the drummer for the bands Owls, Joan Of Arc and Cap'n Jazz and a singer and guitarist in Owen and American Football. When I first took a stab at identifying the fills and intros he selected I was immediately reminded that sometimes this little game can turn me on to some pretty awesome music I hadn't heard before. Maybe that'll be true for you. Good luck, rock stars!

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Music
9:03 am
Wed June 25, 2014

Cold Beat, 'UV'

The members of Cold Beat, in a new video for their song "UV."
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 1:11 pm

San Francisco's frenetic rock group Cold Beat pummels the senses in this strobe-lit new video for the song "UV." Directed by frontwoman Hannah Lew, the candles, chains and band members flicker behind a throbbing, multi-colored strobe light as drummer Bianca Sparta, deadpan behind a pair of sunglasses, slingshots the band through a three-minute burst of post-punk fury.

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All Songs Considered
12:42 pm
Fri June 20, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, For June 20

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 11:49 am

This week we're back to a mix of classic rock and pop, with a few (relatively) recent loves of mine thrown in. As always, if you have a drum fill (or intro) you think should be included in this weekly puzzler, let us know in the comments section, or via Twitter @allsongs, #drumfillfriday.

Live in Concert
10:16 am
Thu June 19, 2014

Sylvan Esso, Live In Concert

Sylvan Esso, performing live at the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C. on June 13, 2014.
Zac Visco for NPR

Originally published on Tue July 1, 2014 1:52 pm

"It's the dreamiest of scenes," Sylvan Esso singer Amelia Meath sighed as she looked out over the sold-out crowd at Washington, D.C.'s 9:30 Club. Wearing six-inch platform tennis shoes and an all-black jumpsuit, Meath gyrated and pumped her fists, urging the crowd on. Meanwhile, the other half of Sylvan Esso, Nick Sanborn, tweaked the knobs on a small control panel plugged into a laptop.

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All Songs TV
10:10 am
Mon June 16, 2014

Sean Rowe, 'Madman'

Sean Rowe, in a scene from his new video for the song "Madman."
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue June 17, 2014 1:58 pm

Despite its name, "Madman" has more bounce to it than much of Rowe's earlier work. But it implies you'd have to be nuts to choose a life on the road.

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All Songs Considered
7:03 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, For June 13

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 11:49 am

You don't always have to love the music to appreciate the talent behind it. Some of the artists featured in this week's puzzler are masters in genres I rarely reach for (fusion anyone?), but lord are they gifted musicians. I also think some of the fills in this batch are particularly challenging, but give a listen and see how you do. Safe drum fill-naming, heroes!

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All Songs Considered
6:03 am
Fri June 6, 2014

Drum Fill Friday, For June 6

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 11:49 am

Most of the time, I just pick songs with moments that get me air drumming, regardless of the genre or drummer — or the programmer behind the beats. But for this week's puzzler, I've selected works by undeniable legends in the business, from classic rock pioneers to jazz virtuosos. Good luck, heroes!

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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