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Monday, October 20 2008

Parents Just Don’t Understand

For every tween who raids his parents' record collection, there are 30 more who can't get in the family car without headphones plugged in to their own tunes.


Sunday, October 19 2008

Countrypolitik: What’s Right and What’s Left About Country Music

At a first glance, country music seems traditionally allied with the sort of down-home, small-town ethics and values touted by the Republicans. But the politics of country music has never been a simple red or blue.


Wednesday, October 8 2008

Selling the Melody

From the lips of Melody Gardot -- heard in her swinging Cole Porter for an automobile -- there's another tentacle of jazz pushing forward, finding its way into our ears.


Sunday, September 28 2008

We Don’t Die, We Multiply: Heartbeat Props

The Digital Underground party has apparently come to an end. If so, we must acknowledge the group for more reasons than popularizing "The Humpty Dance".


Sunday, September 21 2008

Fela! Here Comes the Black President

Great art such as Fela! inspires us to make the choices we need to make, and not give up our responsibilities because it is easier to allow someone else to make decisions for us.


Monday, September 15 2008

Workingman’s Death

All That Remains' Phil Labonte talks about exercising restraint in creativity, recording the band's new album, 'Overcome', and not taking metal too seriously.


Monday, September 1 2008

Event Etiquette

Enthusiasm at sporting events and concerts is great. But when your spirited dancing turns into a one-man mosh pit, it's a damned annoying distraction.


Wednesday, August 27 2008

The Dusty Foot Philosopher Kicks Up America

K'Naan stood on stage, drum in hand, focused on the two instruments that comprise and compose the totality of African storytelling: the voice and the drum.


Sunday, August 24 2008

He’s Lost Control

The kids who grew up in the '90s had the haunted Kurt Cobain; my generation had the tormented Ian Curtis.


Wednesday, August 20 2008

Looking Back at Brubeck

Dave Brubeck has been incredibly popular, neither simplistic nor crass, yet critics have never much liked his music. What if you listen to him -- to his long career -- with fresh ears?


Tuesday, August 19 2008

We Don’t Die, We Multiply: Hip-Hop Groups

Group identification creates interesting scenarios within hip-hop culture, from the formation and maintenance of group identity to the difficulties of promoting the lyrical skills of a group's various members.


Sunday, August 17 2008

Triumph Over Tragedy

Into Eternity's Tim Roth talks about the tragic year that informed his band's new album, life in the Candadian prairies, and what it means to be a "hybrid band".


Sunday, August 10 2008

Back in the Day

Heat and beats make for a good combination. No surprise then that most of my memorable experiences related to hip-hop happened during the summer.


Sunday, August 3 2008

A Walk Through the Medina

It's fascinating to think that a culture that produces such deep and soulful bass music could also contact its spirits via the shrieking, grating sounds of this flute, yet such is the nature of Moroccan music.


Sunday, July 27 2008

Gone Festin’

Yes, communing with thousands of music fans at summer festivals is fun...for a while. But then it becomes a group of people whom you really didn't plan on spending your weekend with, unless you typically hang out with stoned 16-year olds.


Wednesday, July 23 2008

Vinyl: Got to Get You Into My Life

Maybe it's because current methods of listening aren't cutting it that I've started buying more vinyl. Not because it sounds better or evokes nostalgia, but because listening to vinyl is a more structured and formal experience.


Wednesday, July 16 2008

Double Standards

What does it say about our time and place that our two boldest -- maybe best -- jazz singers, Patricia Barber and Cassandra Wilson, are returning to singing standards again?


Thursday, July 10 2008

Truth in Humor

The second season of The Boondocks tackles issues that are important to the hip-hop community with contributions from numerous hip-hop artists. Boondocks Response Syndrome explains why we react to this series the way we do.


Wednesday, July 2 2008

Retelling the History of Black Music: Everything You Know about the Blues Is Wrong

For the most part, blacks were not involved in the heroic work of rescuing the black acoustic blues legacy from the passage of time.


Tuesday, July 1 2008

The Sounds of Now: Tristan Murail and Sounding Stasis

What happens to the ear when it receives musical sound? Do we hear "our" music as music and the rest as noise?


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