• With ‘Mother Nature,’ Angelique Kidjo Passes The Torch To Young African Musicians

    The new album from the legendary singer Angelique Kidjo, Mother Nature, is a showcase of collaborations with up-and-coming artists from across Africa. Adblock test (Why?)

  • One Woman Band Joan Armatrading Releases 22nd Album

    Lulu Garcia-Navarro speaks with Joan Armatrading about her 22nd album, Consequences. Adblock test (Why?)

  • In New York City, A Juneteenth Event Examines The Meaning Of Freedom

    Enlarge this image The Lincoln Center campus, presently adorned in a green carpet of synthetic grass, hosts a Juneteenth experience June 19. Sachyn Mital/Lincoln Center Sachyn Mital/Lincoln Center The U.S. Congress this week established Juneteenth, a commemoration observed in communities and cities across the country for more than 150 years to mark the day slaves in Texas were informed of their freedom, as an officially recognized federal holiday. Celebrations being held all over the country on June 19 likely will assume an added sense of occasion. In one such event, happening at Lincoln Center in New York City, a starry group of Black artists will present an outdoor event that not only marks the day, but also examines ...

  • 50 Years Of Sparks: The World Ain’t Big Enough For The Both Of Them

    Enlarge this image From left, Russell and Ron Mael, who record as Sparks, photographed in 1982 during the cover shoot for their album Angst In My Pants. Eric Blum/Getty Images Eric Blum/Getty Images The band Sparks – really a duo, of L.A.-born brothers Russell and Ron Mael – is marking its fifth decade as a living enigma this year. As director Edgar Wright wonders in his new documentary, The Sparks Brothers: "How can Ron and Russell Mael be successful, underrated, hugely influential and overlooked, all at the same time?" (You can hear my review of the film in the audio player above.) The pair has long been celebrated from L.A. to London, Paris to Tokyo. And there's no shortage of reverence for the group from its ...

  • Billy Bragg And Joe Henry On Mountain Stage

    Enlarge this image Billy Bragg and Joe Henry Josh Saul/Mountain Stage Josh Saul/Mountain Stage On this treasured Mountain Stage archive performance from 2016, British folk activist Billy Bragg and Grammy-winning artist and producer Joe Henry roll in full-steam ahead with poetic authority, moaning America's canon of railroad blues from times gone by. Though Bragg and Henry had already made multiple separate trips to Mountain Stage, this performance at Pitttsburgh's Byham Theater defied space and time. The dynamic folk heroes came together like porters from the past carrying iconic songs from Shine a Light: Field Recordings from the Great American Railroad, recorded during a train ride from Chicago to Los Angeles. ...

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