Music

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Sarah Lee and Johnny join Kate at the NHPR studio. Their next tour stop will be at the Rockingham Meetinghouse in Rockingham, Vermont on Sunday, July 22. Get the details.

Blues, folk, and occasional rock and roll troubadour Chris Smither has been packing big ideas into 3-minute ditties for decades now. The former New Orleanian has long made New England a home and he’s part of a Woody Guthrie tribute at the Green River Festival in Greenfield Massachusetts this weekend.

Produced with Emma Ruddock

As a music video director Dan Huiting has worked with many prominent musicians such as Bon Iver and Andrew Bird. In addition to directing music videos Huiting is the senior producer of the "City of Music" series on Pitchfork.TV, photography director and editor at MN Original on TPT, and a filmmaker.  

The Monadnock Music Festival’s 47th season is getting underway, and the group is calling the new season the start of a new era, after a period of reorganization both in Monadnock Music’s structure and in leadership.

Brady Carlson, NHPR

It’s summer camp season – these days kids can spend a week on almost any activity they like, from sports and the outdoors to computers and robotics. Since the late 1960’s, kids who love music have been heading to Bennington, Vermont, which is home to a piano camp known as Summer Sonatina.

(Photo of Tim in studio by Rebecca Lavoie)

Produced with Emma Ruddock

Here on Word of Mouth, we’re always trying to bring you the story, the angle, or the artist you’ve never heard… but because it takes buzz to make buzz, we rarely get to highlight the work of someone who’s work has yet to be discovered at all.  Last week our intern Emma Ruddock brought seventeen year-old singer-songwriter Tim Scott to our studio, and right away we recognized a rare talent in the shy high-schooler from Milford, New Hampshire.

(Photo by Bryan Troy via Flickr Creative Commons)

Scott Solksy is the Executive Director of a brand new event, The Granite State Music Festival. And he's in studio to tell us what to expect from the event, which takes place this weekend. 

Photo Credit Vissago, Via Flickr Creative Commons

On Sunday, the Grammy award winning Muir String Quartet will perform at a benefit for Classical Music by the Sea in North Hampton. Proceeds will benefit The Classics for Kids Foundation, which helps to provide school music programs throughout the United States with quality stringed instruments. The benefit begins with an afternoon reception followed by the concert at 6.

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Join NPR's Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep as he travels this month to Tunisia, Libya and Egypt to tell the stories of North Africans one year after the Arab Spring. As Steve makes this journey, NPR Music will feature some of the music he is hearing along his travels — in cafes, clubs and on local radio stations.

New York's historic Algonquin Hotel has been famous for a lot of things: the roundtable where some of the greatest American wits, from George S. Kaufman to Dorothy Parker, held forth in the 1920s and '30s; generations of cats — named either Hamlet or Matilda — who haunt the lobby; and, since 1980, the Oak Room, one of New York's most loved cabaret spaces.

When Marriott purchased the hotel and closed it for renovations early this year, they announced that the Oak Room would not be reopening — instead, it will be a lounge for preferred customers.

A shelf stacked with LPs, a cassette played over and over on a family road trip, a song a parent always sang when vacuuming — these are ingredients of musical memories from childhood.

Lana Del Rey got her start at 18, when she was still known as Lizzy Grant and moved from Lake Placid to New York City to write songs and perform in clubs. In 2008, under her given name, she produced and released the EP Kill Kill independently. In 2010, her first album — the doubly eponymous Lana Del Ray [sic] a.k.a. Lizzy Grant — came out and was quickly pulled from circulation, though it'll be reissued this summer.

(Photo by multipletrees via Flickr Creative Commons)

The words of Thomas Jefferson ring in the ears and characters of Americans, yet his actual voice remains unknown. Likewise, visitors to Monticello get a window into his daily life and genius, but can only imagine the mix of pastoral and industrious sounds of the farm operating at full tilt.

courtesy of <a href="http://www.banjodan.com/">Banjo Dan and the Mid-nite Plowboys</a>

Kate McNally hosts Banjo Dan and the Midnight Plowboys in a live performance at the Tupelo Music Hall in White River Junction, VT.

(Photo by Leo Reynolds via Flickr Creative Commons)

Part 1:

Pay Less...Hate More?

Levon Helm, Drummer And Singer In The Band, Dies

Apr 20, 2012

So Percussion, a New York-based quartet, brings an epic approach to the backbeat. 

We speak with members Adam Silwinski and Eric Beach in advance of their show at The Hop at Dartmouth College. 

 

Anoushka Shankar: A Sitar Player In Andalusia

Apr 19, 2012

Anoushka Shankar is the daughter and protege of the renowned Indian sitar player Ravi Shankar, who is credited with introducing Indian classical music to Western audiences. Now, Anoushka Shankar carries on this tradition in more ways than one. On her new album, Traveller, she goes back in time to make the connections between India and Spain.

Tupac Shakur was killed more than 15 years ago — three years before the first Coachella Valley Music & Arts festival was held. But thanks to a trick of light, he's probably the single most talked about musician who performed at this year's version of the festival.

Saxophonist Andrew Love of the Memphis Horns has died. Love, who had Alzheimer's disease, died on April 12 at his home in Memphis. He was 70 years old.

And now...from you.

Apr 16, 2012
Photo by Rebecca Lavoie

One listener wants to know how we choose music for segments. Another wants to brag about her nine year-old's fiddlehead business. 

We take on more of your feedback, and get your burning questions answered. 

Spiritualized: The Man Who Fell To Earth

Apr 16, 2012

In 2001, a German nature magazine sent a crew to observe the eruption of Mount Etna, the volcano on the eastern coast of Sicily. The report they filed began with this line: "We got as close as we could for safety to the center of the eruption, and set up our equipment and our cameras. Then a man in a silver spacesuit marched up to where we were — and kept on walking."

Amnon Weinstein first encountered a violin from the Holocaust 50 years ago. He was a young violin maker in Israel, and a customer brought him an old instrument in terrible condition and wanted it restored.

The customer had played on the violin on the way to the gas chamber, but he survived because the Germans needed him for their death camp orchestra. He hadn't played on it since.

"So I opened the violin, and there inside there [were] ashes," Weinstein says.

Imagine an era when mainstream music wasn't filled with synthesizers. When electronic music wasn't a force propelling everything from pop and hip-hop to music from the underground. There was a time when this world existed. Then Kraftwerk emerged, and the world we knew changed.

On Friday morning a hearing scheduled in the criminal copyright case of Megaupload may have implications for all kinds of companies that sell storage space in the cloud — storage space used for anything from music files to family photos, research data to movie collections. The hearing will focus on what happens when the federal government blocks access to allegedly illegal files along with clearly legal ones.

Carole King has an armful of Grammy Awards and countless Top 10 hits, both under her own name and as a songwriter for artists from Little Eva to the Monkees to Aretha Franklin.

Her solo album Tapestry spent 15 weeks at the top of the charts, becoming one of the biggest-selling records of all time. King managed to fit in all those hits by starting very, very young. She tells NPR's Renee Montagne that she was just 15 when she and some classmates formed a doo-wop group called the Co-Sines.

M. Ward: Sounds Of A Different Time And Place

Apr 10, 2012

M. Ward's music inspires a sense of wonder — it recalls many sounds from a different time and place.

"I get most of my inspiration from older records and older production styles," Ward says, "and that ends up rearing its head in the records that I make. One of the great things about music is that it has the capability of time travel — you smell a certain smell in the room and it takes you back to your childhood. I feel like music is able to do that, and it happens to me all the time."

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