Deceptive Cadence
7:03 am
Wed April 1, 2015

A Sale Is Booming: Rare Stradivarius Drums Up For Auction

Timpani are also called kettledrums. These instruments crafted by Antonio Stradivari were, for a time, more kettles than drums.
DEA Picture Library De Agostini/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 1, 2015 9:40 am

Museum curators, instrument dealers and some of the world's most esteemed musicians will be clutching paddles today at Cloiduff's auction house in New York. They're gathering for what is expected to be an eight-figure sale of perhaps the rarest instruments ever to appear at auction: a pair of lovingly restored Stradivarius timpani.

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Jazz Night In America: Wednesday Night Webcasts
8:20 pm
Tue March 31, 2015

Home Cooking: The Philadelphia Jazz Organ Tradition In Concert

Sonny Keaton performs during the Home Cooking concert.

Originally published on Thu April 16, 2015 12:03 am

The Hammond electronic organ was developed with churches in mind, as a lower-cost alternative to pipe organs. But in Philadelphia, a keyboard player named Jimmy Smith was inspired by early jazz experiments on the instrument, and found a devastating way to adapt the new bebop style to the Hammond B-3. It seeded a new tradition of organ players in Philadelphia — major figures like "Groove" Holmes, Jimmy McGriff, Papa John and Joey DeFrancesco, and Trudy Pitts — and kickstarted a new sound in jazz at large.

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Jazz Night In America: Wednesday Night Webcasts
7:50 pm
Tue March 31, 2015

Cassandra Wilson Sings Billie Holiday

Cassanda Wilson sings Billie Holiday at the Kennedy Center.

Originally published on Thu April 9, 2015 3:19 pm

One hundred years after she was born, Billie Holiday remains iconic in American music, not to mention jazz singing. Cassandra Wilson has made her career in jazz singing by embracing a wide range of American music, and it holds true on her latest project: a new album rearranging the Billie Holiday songbook. The new Coming Forth By Day, created with rocker Nick Cave's producer and rhythm section, reshapes songs like "Good Morning Heartache" and "Strange Fruit" with fresh textures and resonances.

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All Songs Considered
10:43 am
Tue March 31, 2015

Can You Name That Musical Prank?

Test your wits against these musical pranksters.
Douglas Grundy Getty Images

Each April 1st, practical jokers get their kicks pulling the wool over people's eyes. There are little white lies, cunning schemes and elaborate hoaxes. Pranksters are alive and well in music, too. Test your wits with these musical smart alecks who run the gamut from clever clowns to serious scam artists. Score high and feel a surge of superiority. Score low and fancy yourself a true April fool.

11:41 am
Mon March 30, 2015

Latitudes: The International Music You Must Hear Now

The Romanian band Taraf de Haïdouks returns, rebooted, to celebrate its 25th anniversary.
Kamil Ornarowicz Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Tue March 31, 2015 1:56 pm

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World Cafe
11:20 am
Mon March 30, 2015

World Cafe Next: BKO Quintet

BKO Quintet.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon April 20, 2015 12:51 pm

This week's World Cafe: Next artist, BKO Quintet, is from the North African nation of Mali. Its album Bamako Today modernizes traditional Malian tunes and originals.

The band calls its music "Trad Actual Malian Sound." But, as you'll hear, it's also got a contemporary feel. In this segment, you can hear and download a couple of songs, including one in which BKO Quintet is joined by vocalist Piers Faccini singing in English.

Favorite Sessions
10:05 am
Mon March 30, 2015

KEXP Presents: Seth Avett & Jessica Lea Mayfield

Seth Avett & Jessica Lea Mayfield perform live on KEXP.
Matthew B. Thompson KEXP

Originally published on Thu April 16, 2015 9:34 am

Every fan seems to have a story about their love for Elliott Smith. For Seth Avett and Jessica Lea Mayfield, theirs might have started with a dog. The two friends bonded over Smith's songs after Mayfield introduced Avett to her adopted pooch, Elliott.

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First Listen
10:03 pm
Sun March 29, 2015

Review: The Mountain Goats, 'Beat The Champ'

The Mountain Goats' new album, Beat the Champ, comes out April 7.
Lissa Gotwals Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue April 7, 2015 10:46 am

When thinking about populism, it's easy to focus on either the relatable day-to-day struggles of average people — of the majority somewhere in the middle, glorified by so many rootsy tropes — or the more strung-out striving of those at the bottom. In politics and in culture, "the little guy" has typically made it far enough up the ladder to have a voice echoed in anthems and slogans, or else sunk far enough into desperation, homelessness or famine so as to surpass the need for detail entirely.

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4:43 pm
Sun March 29, 2015

DJ Betto Arcos Spices Up The Accordion

Marco Ambrosini and Jean-Louis Matinier, who respectively hail from Italy and France, are among Betto Arcos' favorite musicians currently testing the sonic limits of the accordion.
Daniel Vass Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun March 29, 2015 4:56 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
4:24 pm
Sat March 28, 2015

A Young Composer's Evening Prayers For Troubled Times

Missy Mazzoli
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu April 2, 2015 9:05 am

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