Thursday, July 10 2008
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
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
What happens to the ear when it receives musical sound? Do we hear "our" music as music and the rest as noise?
Monday, June 30 2008
More than the usual ABCs, this school clearly believes in arts education, regularly spotlighting student performers at its assemblies -- and these kids are acquiring real musical skills.
Thursday, June 26 2008
Even today there are distinctive characteristics to American and European jazz styles. Which strain of music is most forward-looking? Which suggests the most promising vanguard for a music that seems to lose listeners even as its creativity expands?
Wednesday, June 25 2008
Hip-hop's top dog touches down in soap opera territory for two days of music and melodrama.
Monday, June 23 2008
Julie Christmas, lead singer for Brooklyn's Made Out of Babies, talks about the "venemous" combination of screaming and restrained singing, ambiguous lyric-writing, and the making of the band's latest album, The Ruiner.
Sunday, June 15 2008
For the last decade, Turntables on the Hudson has held gatherings of positive music -- funk, hip-hop, soul, dance; African, Latin, and Balkan beats -- that thrive on human connection.
Sunday, June 8 2008
The Drive-By Truckers' live shows once played like a songwriters-in-the-round session with electric guitars and increasingly empty bottles of Jack Daniels. Then Jason Isbell came along -- and it only got better.
Wednesday, June 4 2008
The recent "censure" of The Boondocks demonstrates the difficulty art faces in raising a critical converation in a corporate setting. Considering hip-hop's deep embedding into corporate culture, how can radical change happen?
Wednesday, May 28 2008
"Blue Note" means there's a certain sound to a record, a style that is tight and sharp and funky but also adventurous. If jazz is music to shout about, Blue Note records may be the most shout-worthy of all time.
Monday, May 26 2008
When I started writing about music, I didn't realize that it would mean I'd become "the enemy". So though writing brought me closer to music and the people who make it, it also took me further away.
Wednesday, May 21 2008
It's a hard road, as a fella named John Osbourne once sang, but the respect that Testament has gained over more than two decades of personal and creative ups and downs is well earned.
Thursday, May 15 2008
There are four hip-hop rules for families. One: Fathers, take care of your children and their mothers. Two: Don't talk about other people's mamas. Three: Be good to your own mother. Four: Repeat as necessary.
Sunday, May 11 2008
Beres hits Paris and Bourges to take in the eclectic sounds of Transglobal Underground, Les Primitifs du Futur, Watcha Clan, and Fat Freddy's Drop, and gets pulled into the "sacred space" that solders the connection between sound and human.
Sunday, May 4 2008
What will some of today's most well-known hip-hop artists be doing in 2035? Maybe they won't be running the music world, but they'll probably be doing something beyond applying Fixodent to their grills.
Thursday, May 1 2008
John Cage replaces the comforting order of the cosmos with the recalcitrant, indecipherable organization of a part of the universe. Each sound, radically set off from the others, demands that we hear it in isolation.
Monday, April 21 2008
Is he strumming your face with his fingers? And singing your life with his words?
Thursday, April 17 2008
Begrand dives into metal fandom with the Mountain Goats' John Darnielle, who discusses the Mighty Riff, the uneasy relationship between indie and metal camps, and the life experiences behind his new book on Black Sabbath's Master of Reality.
Wednesday, April 16 2008
With two of the US' major "smooth jazz" radio stations defunct to the fickleness of format change, the time to mourn the cheesy sub-genre is now. But what made Smooth Jazz not really jazz at all?