Music

Mountain Stage
11:45 am
Tue May 19, 2015

Mary Gauthier On Mountain Stage

Mary Gauthier.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

When Mary Gauthier first began to make a name for herself as a musician in the late '90s, she was heralded as one of the most poignant and powerful songwriters of her generation — an amazing accomplishment for someone who wrote her first song at 35. Originally from New Orleans and currently based in Nashville, Gauthier has battled back from hard knocks and bad habits, bouncing between rehab centers and homeless shelters throughout her teens.

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Music
8:38 am
Tue May 19, 2015

Brightmusic Chamber Ensemble's Fifth Series on Performance Oklahoma

Marking their 12th anniversary season the Brightmusic Society of Oklahoma presented their fifth series of concerts on Monday, April 20th at All Soul’s Episcopal Church and Tuesday, April 21st at St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral in Oklahoma City. Featuring pianist Stephen Beus and three quartets for piano and strings, the program opens with Mozart’s Quartet for Piano and Strings No. 2 in E-flat Major, K493, the work among the first written in the genre. The Piano Quartet in a minor, Op 67 of Joaquin Turina, completed in 1931, is suffused with the characteristic grace of Spanish folk music.

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Deceptive Cadence
7:26 am
Tue May 19, 2015

Bruce Brubaker's Flowing, Meditative Glass

Pianist Bruce Brubaker has been playing Philip Glass' music for more than 20 years.
Timothy Saccenti

Originally published on Wed May 20, 2015 8:11 am

In his new memoir, Words Without Music, Philip Glass tells the story of how he slugged a man in the jaw in Amsterdam. At a concert, a quarrelsome audience member climbed onto the stage and began banging on the composer's keyboard. That was in 1969, when Glass' repetitious, slowly evolving music fell on many ears like a needle stuck in the groove of a record.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:01 pm
Mon May 18, 2015

After 42 Years, Juilliard String Quartet Cellist To Step Down

After 42 years, cellist Joel Krosnick (foreground, left) is bidding farewell to the Juilliard String Quartet.
Sony Classical Simon Powis

Originally published on Thu May 21, 2015 9:00 am

The Juilliard String Quartet was established in 1946 as an all-purpose quartet that would embrace music from every era. Its founders' intent was to "play new works as if they were established masterpieces and established masterpieces as if they were new."

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First Listen
10:03 pm
Sun May 17, 2015

First Listen: Los Hijos De La Montaña, 'Los Hijos De La Montaña'

Los Hijos De La Montaña.
Jeff Elbel Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed May 27, 2015 5:56 am

Although they share the same last name, it's hard to imagine a less likely pairing than Luz Elena Mendoza and Sergio Mendoza.

While both have roots in Mexico, Luz Elena makes her home in the Pacific Northwest and has fronted a band called Y La Bamba. That group sets Luz Elena's deep, evocative voice against backing vocals so rich, I once described Y La Bamba's other singing members as bearded choirboys. There were direct Mexican influences in the music, but not many.

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First Listen
10:03 pm
Sun May 17, 2015

First Listen: Joshua Redman & The Bad Plus, 'The Bad Plus Joshua Redman'

Joshua Redman & The Bad Plus' new album, The Bad Plus Joshua Redman, comes out May 26.
Cameron Wittig Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed May 27, 2015 5:55 am

For the last two years, pianist Ethan Iverson has been at the center of what looks, in hindsight, like a serious creative whirlwind. He re-conceptualized Stravinsky's ballet The Rite Of Spring in its entirety (!) for his trio The Bad Plus, and then, for good measure, recorded an album of all-original Bad Plus music (Inevitable Western).

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Music
11:03 am
Sun May 17, 2015

From Four Different Corners Of Africa, Four Bold New Albums

Tuareg blues and griot guitar meet virtuoso percussion on Zoy Zoy, the latest album from the Niger band Tal National.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun May 17, 2015 7:56 pm

World-music DJ Betto Arcos is back — this time, with music he's found all over the African continent. The host of Global Village on KPFK in Los Angeles recently joined NPR's Arun Rath to discuss new albums from four different corners of Africa, including soulful songs from a prison in Malawi, dance music from Congo and a collaboration between a Malian singer and a Cuban pianist. Hear their conversation at the audio link, and check out the music below.

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Deceptive Cadence
7:49 am
Sun May 17, 2015

After Thaw, Minnesota Orchestra Returns To Cuba

The Minnesota Orchestra under the direction of conductor Osmo Vanska (center) performs during a concert at the Cuban National Theater in Havana on Friday.
Yamil Lage AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun May 17, 2015 9:44 am

The Minnesota Orchestra plays Havana this weekend. It's the first professional U.S. orchestra to perform in Cuba since the United States and the island nation began the process of normalization last December. For the musicians, this trip is about healing — both diplomatically and for themselves.

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Favorite Sessions
7:03 am
Sun May 17, 2015

Folk Alley Presents: The Steel Wheels

The Steel Wheels, performing live for Folk Alley.
Folk Alley

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Music
5:14 pm
Sat May 16, 2015

50 Years Ago, Ramsey Lewis Joined 'The In Crowd'

Ramsey Lewis' hit single "The In Crowd" was recorded live in concert 50 years ago this month.
Courtesy of Ravinia Festival

Originally published on Sat May 16, 2015 6:16 pm

Fifty years ago, the Ramsey Lewis Trio sat in a Washington, D.C. coffee shop, musing over what it could add to its set that evening. It was booked for a run at Bohemian Caverns — the group had issued a live album made at the nightclub, and it was gearing up to record a follow-up live album. Over walked a waitress, who inquired about the band's predicament.

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