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Music

Deceptive Cadence
11:04 am
Wed May 28, 2014

Read Joyce DiDonato's Inspiring Juilliard Commencement Speech

Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato.
Simon Pauly Courtesy of the artist

Star mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato gave the 2014 commencement address at Juilliard Friday — and it's a memorable one, both for her words and by DiDonato's own example as someone whose own career began under low heat.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:35 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

How Do You Get Latino Kids Into Classical Music? Bring The Parents

The 85 musicians in the Santa Cecilia Orchestra are paid professionals who play with other symphonies and in Hollywood studios.
Courtesy of the Santa Cecilia Orchestra

Originally published on Tue May 27, 2014 7:37 pm

Outside the concert hall at Occidental College, in Los Angeles' Eagle Rock neighborhood, children are invited to test out the instruments the Santa Cecilia Orchestra will play later. Alexa Media Rodriguez, 8, says she and her family have never before been to an orchestra concert. She heard about the orchestra when some of the musicians visited her school.

"I brought my dad, my stepmom," she says, "my sister, my brother and my sister's cousin ..."

That's the thing about this orchestra, says conductor Sonia Marie De Leon De Vega: The children are bringing the parents.

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Mountain Stage
4:15 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Paul Cebar Tomorrow Sound On Mountain Stage

Paul Cebar.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 2:17 pm

Paul Cebar Tomorrow Sound appears on Mountain Stage, recorded live on the campus of Ohio University in Athens. An institution in his native Wisconsin, Cebar has been a prime mover and promulgator of funky Afro-Caribbean-inflected Americana since the 1980s. His material has ranged from surf instrumentals and blues-rock to worldbeat and many points in between.

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Mountain Stage
3:28 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Parkington Sisters On Mountain Stage

The Parkington Sisters perform on Mountain Stage
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 2:21 pm

The Parkington Sisters appear on Mountain Stage, recorded live on the campus of Ohio University in Athens. Hailing from the town of Wellfleet, Mass., each of the four sisters writes music and plays multiple instruments. Rose plays piano, guitar and accordion; Ariel and Sarah play violin and viola; and Nora plays violin and percussion. Together, they have a dynamic stage presence that's at once harmony-laden and dark — equally at home in clubs, theaters and symphony halls.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
1:28 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Hozier: Tiny Desk Concert

Hozier performs a Tiny Desk Concert.
Alex Schelldorf/NPR NPR

Originally published on Tue May 27, 2014 3:09 pm

Andrew Hozier-Byrne's voice is so rich, so vital and so soulful, I'm certain I'll follow his music for a long time to come. The 24-year-old Irishman, who performs under the name Hozier, opens this set with the brilliant and instantly grabby song "Take Me to Church," about passion, sex and religion.

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Music Videos
11:52 am
Tue May 27, 2014

Mark Stewart On Q2 Music's 'Spaces'

Q2 Music

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 10:06 am

In his own words, Mark Stewart makes a living playing a little bit of popular music, quite a bit of semi-popular music and an enormous amount of unpopular music — the last being all the music you probably haven't heard.

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Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
11:29 am
Tue May 27, 2014

Jon Faddis On Piano Jazz

Jon Faddis.
Jean Francois Laberine Courtesy of the artist

Jon Faddis is one of today's premier trumpet players and an accomplished teacher, composer, conductor and recording artist. Faddis consistently exemplifies an unparalleled range and dazzling technique, with a style that evokes Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis and Roy Eldridge.

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First Listen
10:03 pm
Sun May 25, 2014

First Listen: Gabriel Kahane, 'The Ambassador'

Gabriel Kahane's new album, The Ambassador, comes out June 3.
Josh Goleman Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 10:59 am

Composer and singer-songwriter Gabriel Kahane says that the inspiration for his new album, The Ambassador, is 10 buildings in Los Angeles — appropriate, given what a gifted musical architect he is.

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A Blog Supreme
4:03 am
Sun May 25, 2014

In Memoriam: Jazz Elegies

Wynton Marsalis leads a group of musicians through upper Manhattan's Riverside Church for the New Orleans-style funeral of vibraphonist Lionel Hampton in 2002.
Doug Kanter AFP/Getty Images

New Orleans may be the nominal birthplace of jazz, though it's also where a jazz tradition associated with death began: The jazz funeral, in which mourners taking a casket to the cemetery are accompanied by a band playing spirituals, hymns and dirges.

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Deceptive Cadence
3:58 pm
Sat May 24, 2014

A Few Words With Ennio Morricone

Ennio Morricone became a fixture of global culture with his film music — but as a young composer, he was a radical.
Courtesy of Armonia AC

Originally published on Sun May 25, 2014 1:10 pm

Today at the Cannes Film Festival, attendees marked the 50th anniversary of the spaghetti western at a special screening of A Fistful of Dollars, the Sergio Leone classic that kick-started the genre. Leone's vision of the American West remains singular — and it's impossible to imagine without the iconic music of Ennio Morricone.

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