NPR Music

Deceptive Cadence
5:05 pm
Tue October 1, 2013

Chronicle Of A Death Foretold: New York City Opera Shuts Its Doors

The New York City Opera let its final curtain fall Saturday night at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in a production of Anna Nicole by Mark-Anthony Turnage.
Stephanie Berger

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 6:16 pm

This morning the New York City Opera announced that it was declaring bankruptcy and ceasing operations. Dubbed "The People's Opera" by Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia when it was founded 70 years ago, the company was meant as an alternative to the richer Metropolitan Opera. It's the place where exciting young singers like Beverly Sills and Placido Domingo made their New York debuts and where innovative productions of new operas premiered.

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Music Interviews
4:56 pm
Mon September 30, 2013

Lorde Doesn't Have A Bentley, But The Charts Will Do

Lorde's debut album, Pure Heroine, is out now.
Charles Howells Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon September 30, 2013 10:09 pm

While young women dominate the dance and pop charts, it's been nearly 20 years since we've seen them top the alternative-rock charts. This year, a 16-year-old girl from New Zealand got the job done with a tune that's just about the opposite of anything you'd hear from her peers. Ella Yelich O'Connor — better known as Lorde — is the voice behind the snarky, chart-topping track "Royals," which is the lead single from her debut album, Pure Heroine.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
3:00 pm
Mon September 30, 2013

Oliver 'Tuku' Mtukudzi: Tiny Desk Concert

Oliver "Tuku" Mtukudzi performs a Tiny Desk Concert for NPR Music in Washington, D.C.
Erica Yoon NPR

Originally published on Mon December 23, 2013 6:08 pm

He seemed so casual — sitting on a bar stool behind the Tiny Desk, acoustic guitar in hand — but when you hear that husky voice, you'll know why he's a legend. Oliver Mtukudzi, or "Tuku" as his fans lovingly call him, plays spirited music, born from the soul of Zimbabwe. He's been recording since the late 1970s, with about as many albums as his age: 60.

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The Record
12:34 pm
Mon September 30, 2013

Miley Cyrus' 'Wrecking Ball' Is No. 1, But Is It A Real Hit?

Katy Perry (left) and Miley Cyrus at the Pre-Grammy Gala in February.
Lester Cohen WireImage

Originally published on Mon September 30, 2013 2:33 pm

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A Blog Supreme
5:37 am
Sun September 29, 2013

The Jazz Documentarian Who Won The Lottery

Vocalist Brianna Thomas and Michael Mwenso sang a duet of "Don't Blame Me" for the web series Capsulocity.
Courtesy of Capsulocity

Originally published on Sun September 29, 2013 8:51 pm

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The Record
8:03 am
Sat September 28, 2013

Drizzy Sings The Blues

Drake at 106 & Park on Monday.
Bennett Raglin/BET Getty Images for BET

Originally published on Sat September 28, 2013 4:51 pm

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Music Interviews
7:58 am
Sat September 28, 2013

Chvrches Talks Technology (And 'Ghostbusters')

The electronic band Chvrches comprises Lauren Mayberry, Martin Doherty (center) and Iain Cook.
Stephanie Shim Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat September 28, 2013 12:56 pm

The synth-pop trio Chvrches is not your average electronic band. The Scottish group embraces technology in its creative process — but that doesn't mean it can't turn in a stellar live performance.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
5:26 am
Sat September 28, 2013

Hem: Tiny Desk Concert

Hem performs a Tiny Desk Concert in June 2013.
Chloe Coleman NPR

Originally published on Mon December 23, 2013 6:08 pm

Hem is one of All Songs Considered's earliest discoveries. Back in 2002, we received a beautiful and unique album called Rabbit Songs. It was a homey, fireside kind of record, with a sound that could be called country or Americana, and the arrangements by Dan Messé made it feel quaint and warm. To top it off, there was singer Sally Ellyson, an untrained natural talent with an effortless yet breathtaking voice.

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Music News
5:25 am
Sat September 28, 2013

'If It Swings': An Asian-American Jazzman's Pioneering Career

Gabe Baltazar (fourth from left) at New York City's Birdland Club in 1962, with members of Stan Kenton's band and the Count Basie Orchestra. The photo, from Baltazar's collection, is signed by Kenton (fourth from from right) and trumpeter Harry "Sweets" Edison (second from right).
Courtesy of Gabe Baltazar

Originally published on Sat September 28, 2013 11:16 am

Saxophonist Gabe Baltazar got his big break after Stan Kenton heard him playing in a college band and invited him to join his Orchestra in 1960.

"One of my biggest highlights in Stan's band was being featured on a beautiful standard tune called 'Stairway to the Stars,'" the 83-year-old Baltazar says. "He liked that tune, and he thought it would be my signature song. And throughout my career, four years with the band, I was featured on that and it was just great."

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Music Reviews
3:34 pm
Thu September 26, 2013

Bumpy, Bikers And The Story Behind 'Leader Of The Pack'

The Shangri-Las on the cover of the "Leader of the Pack" single.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 4:48 pm

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