Music

Heavy Rotation
12:03 am
Wed July 30, 2014

Heavy Rotation: 10 Songs Public Radio Can't Stop Playing

Dusdin Condren Courtesy of the artist

Heavy Rotation is a monthly sampler of public radio hosts' favorite songs. Check out past editions here.

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

World Cafe
8:08 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

Jenny Lewis On World Cafe

Jenny Lewis' new album, The Voyager, arrived on July 29.
Autumn de Wilde Courtesy of the artist

Jenny Lewis's new album, The Voyager, comes out today and we are lucky to have her as our guest playing live with her band.

From child actor to co-head of Rilo Kiley and thru some spectacular solo albums (Rabbit Fur Coat and Acid Tongue) plus working with Ben Gibbard in The Postal Service, we already know Jenny is a trooper. This weekend her story was chronicled in a profile in The New York Times Magazine.

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Music Reviews
2:56 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

A Fond Farewell From An Old Memphis Maverick

When "Cowboy" Jack Clement died in August 2013, he'd just completed what would be his final album, For Once and for All.
J. Niles Clement Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue July 29, 2014 5:31 pm

The late musician Jack Clement's nickname, "Cowboy," came from a radio show he was part of in the early 1960s. It had nothing to do with horses or boots, but it happened to fit his maverick approach to work.

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All Songs Considered
1:22 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

New Mix: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis Join Fences, Plus Zola Jesus, Sun Kil Moon, More

Clockwise from upper left: Fences (aka Christopher Mansfield) and Macklemore, Zola Jesus, Spider Bags, Sun Kil Moon, Frazey Ford
Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Tue July 29, 2014 2:33 pm

Just off the train from the Newport Folk Festival, Bob Boilen jumps at the chance to share a song by The Oh Hellos, his favorite discovery of the weekend. On "The Valley," the Texas band thunders and strums its way to a glorious sing-along chorus. Robin Hilton follows that with a premiere from Frazey Ford, whose soulful voice reinforces the celebratory mood of "September Fields."

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Tiny Desk Concerts
12:27 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

Saintseneca: Tiny Desk Concert

Saintseneca performs a Tiny Desk Concert.
Olivia Merrion NPR

Originally published on

One of the many instruments you may hear Saintseneca play — beyond the banjo, baglama, bulbul, balalaika, bowed banjo, baritone ukulele, bass and bouzouki — is a stomp box. Basically, it's a roughly 2'x2' plywood floorboard meant for pounding the beat. At a show just before this Tiny Desk Concert, craftily bearded singer Zac Little put his boot right through that floorboard.

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All Songs Considered
12:25 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

Newport Folk 2014 In Photos

Adam Kissick for NPR

Originally published on Tue July 29, 2014 1:33 pm

NPR Music photographer Adam Kissick was busier than a line chef at a Newport seafood stand last weekend at the town's world famous Folk Festival. Over three days, he shot more than 50 different bands — from Anais Mitchell to Valerie June — while constantly running back and forth between stages.

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The Record
12:02 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

Chronixx: 'I'm Not A Perfectionist With Music'

Chronixx onstage on Saturday at LargeUp's SummerStage event in New York City's Central Park.
Sherwin Dyer Courtesy of LargeUp

Summertime bodes well for reggae music. The genre's biggest crossover moves — from Sean Paul to I Wayne — have been made during the balmier months, when Americans relax enough to stretch the geographical limits of our soundtracks. This year's case in point: Chronixx, Jamaica's current it-artist, steadily making strides on international shores.

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The Record
9:34 am
Tue July 29, 2014

East Nashville Rocks

Andrija Tokic in his East Nashville studio, The Bomb Shelter.
Joshua Shoemaker Courtesy of the artist

How do you know you are in East Nashville? Follow the beards, a current joker might say. If you do, you'll find yourself in an area tucked in between Nashville's neat downtown and the city's eastern edge, separated from each by the twisting Cumberland River. To the west, tourists flock to the Country Music Hall of Fame and Ryman Auditorium — the "Mother Church of Country Music." The Opryland complex — the venerable stage and radio show's comfortably suburban home since 1974 — is to the east, where the city sprawls into malls, hotels and tourists attractions.

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Newport Folk Festival
8:19 am
Tue July 29, 2014

Jeff Tweedy, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2014

Jeff Tweedy performs at the 2014 Newport Folk Festival.
Adam Kissick for NPR

There aren't a whole lot of failures on the resume of Jeff Tweedy, who co-piloted the groundbreaking alt-country band Uncle Tupelo in the '80s and early '90s, then multiplied its popularity as the leader of Wilco. In that band, Tweedy's refusal to compromise his vision led to his greatest commercial success, vaulting idiosyncratic records like Yankee Hotel Foxtrot and A Ghost Is Born into the canon.

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Newport Folk Festival
8:17 am
Tue July 29, 2014

Conor Oberst, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2014

Conor Oberst performs at the 2014 Newport Folk Festival.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Far removed from his days as a white-knuckled teenage prodigy in Bright Eyes, Conor Oberst has settled into his 30s as a wise and wizened elder statesman. He's come to channel his youthful intensity into real showmanship, especially onstage, while continuing to mine powerful emotions and a sort of fearless poignancy in his songwriting.

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