Anaïs Mitchell has a knack for mythology that flies over the heads of most modern songwriters. From her adaptation of the Orpheus myth on Hadestown — an arresting "folk opera" wherein Orpheus and Eurydice struggle through a post-apocalyptic economic depression — to the nuanced interweaving of Biblical and Greek mythology in last year's Young Man in America, she's proven adept at mingling the ancient and the contemporary.
New albums of music by the "Three Bs," Bach, Beethoven and Brahms, prove that going back to basics has its advantages. Hear a sweet-toned violin concerto, an audacious piano sonata and a solo cello suite caressed by a lute.
Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 4:04 pm
Blues music is supposed to be cathartic — a way to process and package pain in ways that make it palatable; to take our hurt and ache, set it outside ourselves, give it a tune and rhythm that makes it tangible and real yet somehow less terrifying.
Bruce Cockburn makes his 13th appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W.Va. When Cockburn first visited Mountain Stage in 1990, he was already regarded as one of Canada's most respected musicians.
Bassist Todd Sickafoose is heard often in two cities — his native San Francisco Bay Area and his adopted New York City. Ani DiFranco fans know his sound, too, as he worked with the singer-songwriter for the better part of a decade. In 2008, he released Tiny Resistors, a lushly textured record that put him on the map as a composer and bandleader. Swamped in horns and violin and twin guitars and rock rhythms, Tiny Resistors the band has become an expansive compositional outlet for Sickafoose.