Music

Southern Culture on the Skids are Chapel Hill's legendary "bards of downward mobility." If you have no idea what we're talking about, you're in for a treat:

Here's some of our top four favorite song/album titles:

Wake and District Public Safety Pipes and Drums/raleighpipedrums.com

    

  

This weekend, Raleigh’s streets will be flooded with St. Patrick’s Day revelers. And the sounds of the parade will be classic bagpipe and drum tunes played by the Wake and District Public Safety Pipes and Drums.

The group crashed a wedding last year, much to the guests' delight.

Joshua Starmer
Carol Bales

Joshua Starmer is a songwriter, a singer and a cellist. He can play just about anything, we suppose. At the end of 2012, he decided to spend 2013 writing and recording a song a month.

"It almost derailed every month. The very first month was make or break it. I was working on a song I thought was really good until January 28." Then Starmer, notes, he decided that song was about the worst he'd ever heard, and he scrambled to write something else.

The result is a remarkable collection.

Gregory Porter

A rising young star in jazz is headed to Durham Thursday night. Gregory Porter was a college football player when he was sidelined with an injury. So, he turned to music. He cut an album and was still an unknown singer when he was selected by Wynton Marsalis to do a residency with Jazz at Lincoln Center.

Composer Dan Asia smiling.
danielasia.net

Poet Yehuda Amichai is one of Israel’s most acclaimed artists. His poems explore different aspects of the Jewish faith. American poet Paul Pines also examines the many components of Judaism in his work. American musical composer Dan Asia set both their works to music which will be performed tonight at Elon University

Fall G, Bin G and DJ Couleur at SKIFF 2013 is the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s first international film festival. SKIFF is organized by YoleAfrica and Alkebu Film Pro
http://yoleafrica.org/ / Yole!Africa

  

 When we see The Democratic Republic of Congo on the nightly news, we see scenes of bloody conflict . Rarely do we hear from the people of Congo themselves. The Congolese arts organization Yole!Africa has a new project, Art On The Frontline, to promote the work of Congolese filmmakers and musicians. 

Children of the Horn

This coming Fat Tuesday, the streets of downtown Durham will be filled with the sounds and celebrations of Mardi Gras. The Durham Mardi Gras parades and parties will be accompanied by the sounds of local bands including Children of the Horn. But first, they perform live in studio. Host Frank Stasio talks with band members Wayne Leechford, Bryan McCune, Robo Jones, John Simonetti, Drew Lile and Todd Proctor.

Louis Armstrong Master of Modernism Yellow background behind black and white portrait of Louis Armstrong with trumpet
http://books.wwnorton.com/ / W.W. Norton and Company

    

Louis Armstrong is a integral figure in American popular music. And although many know him for his 1960s hits like "Hello Dolly" and "What a Wonderful World," his career in the 1920s and 30s really set a precedent for jazz vocals and instrumentals for future generations. 

João Ritter is the musician Élève.
www.elevemusic.org

João Ritter combines his technical computer skills with his musical ear to record, mix and master his own tracks.

James Phillips of the band Bombadil poses with the puppet made in his likeness for the show
Bombadil

What is ‘a marriage of concert, puppet show, music video and live film?’ It's a brand new show, premiering under the Duke Performances umbrella, called ‘Love’s Infrastructure.’

This weekend Durham hosts the world premiere.

Mallarme Chamber Players

The Mallarmé Chamber Players are bringing the North Carolina Historically Informed Performance, or HIP music festival to the Triangle this winter. The festival seeks to expose North Carolinians to the wealth of classical music created right in their backyard. Suzanne Rousso, artistic director; Stephen Jaffe, composer; Stephanie Vial, cellist; Andy Bonner, violinist; Joey McDonnell, violist speak with Host Frank Stasio about the HIP festival and classical music in the Triangle.

North Carolina Opera dress rehearsal.
Curtis Brown Photography

Crystal Manich is known for the magic she works with plywood, duct tape, stage levels, lights, and costumes. She's a theater director, with a passion for opera.

In opera, the stories are big, and the staging matters. One time she directed a production of Wagner's "The Flying Dutchman." "It is an amazing and complicated opera to put together," she says. In one scene, the Dutchman is singing an aria while a ghost crew works on the ship.

Dmitry Sikovetsky performs Diamonds in the Rough program aat the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra.
J Henry Fair

    

  Musician, arranger and conductor Dmitry Sitkovetsky has performed across the globe: from Ajerbaijan to Moscow and Los Angeles to New York. 

Dmitry Sitkovetsky
Greensboro Symphony

The State of Things will be Live at Triad Stage in Greensboro on January 21.

Frank Stasio will have a number of guests including the Azerbaijani violinist who has led the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra for more than a decade.

Musician, arranger and conductor Dmitry Sitkovetsky has performed across the globe: from Azerbaijan to Moscow and Los Angeles to New York.

For the last decade, he has served as music director of the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra.

Sikovetsky will perform live on the Triad Stage.

Anna Rose Beck
Anna Rose Beck / annarosebeck.com

When singer-songwriter Anna Rose Beck last appeared on our show, she was trading engineering studies at Duke University for a full-time career as a musician. Now she is fully devoted to her musical career and her newest album, Glass House in Outer Space, garnered a lot of support on the crowd-funding website Kickstarter.

Anna Rose Beck performs live in-studio, and talks with Frank Stasio about her new album. She is joined by Elana Scheiner on cello and Marc Harkness on guitar.

Gibson

Earl Scruggs was a North Carolina native, a banjo virtuoso who was instrumental in the development of the classic bluegrass banjo sound.  There's a new museum, the Earl Scruggs Center in Shelby, North Carolina, which honors his legacy. Annmarie Reiley-Kay is the curator. We asked Annmarie what she's most excited by in the new collection. She immediately told us about two of his instruments.

The Super Earl

Heads on Sticks performs on The State of Things.
Logan Sayles

David Mueller is well known for playing bass in Birds of Avalon, a band which has been signed on a big label and toured internationally.  

Jazz great Branford Marsalis joins the State of Things to speak about his work.
Palma Kolansky

Grammy-award winning artist Branford Marsalis is one of the world’s leading jazz artists. 

Christmas music. It's nearly inescapable at this time of year - on the radio, in shops, in cafes, everywhere. When Phoebe Judge sat down to talk about "Christmas" with jazz double bassist John Brown, the question arose: Why would musicians want to add to the large catalog of existing Christmas songs and recordings?

"It comes from a place of joy," said the double bassist. "We wanted to take this material that's tested, tried and true and say something different about it."

Anthony Kearns singing at the Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana.
gageskidmore / Flickr

Twenty-two year-old Anthony Kearns was working in sales when he decided to try out for the radio competition "Ireland's Search for a Tenor." He earned an in-person audition after singing "Danny Boy" over the phone. After hitchhiking across Ireland, he won the entire competition.  

Host Frank Stasio talks with Anthony Kearns, member of The Irish Tenors about his journey. The Irish Tenors are performing tonight at the Carolina Theater in Durham.   

Soul Central Band

His name is Bobby 'Jaybird' Williams. He works at a diner in Greensboro, and he sings while he works. A lot. Sometimes he dances. 

He says he's worked with the family that owns Fincastles for a long time. He worked with them as a warehouse manager and he sang then. Now he has a bigger stage at the restaurant. 

And his band, Soul Central is also performing regularly.

The Forgotten First: B-1 and the Integration of the Modern Navy
http://core.ecu.edu / ECU Creative Writing department

  

The United States military today has a diverse array of service men and women. But in the early 20th Century, that was far from the case. In World War II, African American men were still predominantly relegated to minor roles. The B-1 Navy band began to change that. It was made up of the first African American men to hold a position higher than messman in the United States Navy. And it was the first of many black World War II Navy bands. 

African American Music Trails of Eastern North Carolina
uncpressblog.com / unc press

Maceo Parker, Billy Taylor, Thelonius Monk: many soul and jazz legends have North Carolina roots. The new book "African American Music Trails of Eastern North Carolina," creates a road map of African American musical history.

Kat Robichaud was a musician long before she got her big break on this season of NBC’s  “The Voice.” She was in a cover band for years before landing a spot on the hit television series. She was eliminated from the show a few weeks ago, but said on the State of Things today that her time there was a highlight of her career.

"It was a dream come true," she said. "It was amazing."

Hillside High School Marching Band
https://www.facebook.com/HHSBAND

  

The Hillside High School Marching Hornets is one of the premier marching bands in the state. The Durham band hails from one of North Carolina's only historically-black schools. Generations of families in Durham have marched with the Hornets. A new documentary, One Band Indivisble, follows a year in the life of the Marching Hornets. 

Musicians from New Music Raleigh perform in a production called Penelope at Kings Barcade.
newmusicraleigh.org/

  

Indy Rock does a good job of getting new music out to the ears of listeners. The same cannot be said of classical style music or opera. 

The Steep Canyon Rangers
http://www.steepcanyon.com/

    

2013 has been a huge year for the western North Carolina bluegrass band Steep Canyon Rangers. The band released a new album “Tell The Ones I Love,” won a Grammy award for “Best Bluegrass Album,”  and toured with actor Steve Martin. 

facebook.com/TheHotAtNights

The Hot at Nights are a Raleigh jazz trio with flare.

They have played some of the hottest jazz spots across the country. Now they appear on The State of Things to promote their new album, “Try This!” Host Frank Stasio talks with the band about their new album and they play live in the studio.

Duke Performances

You may know Nick Sanborn as the bassist of Megafaun, but his musical influence in the Triangle spreads far beyond that.

Rocking Out At Recess

Oct 18, 2013
Justin Roberts

The New York Times calls him, “the Judy Blume of kiddie rock,” and USA Today says he is “hands down the best songwriter in the genre.” Grammy-nominated children’s musician Justin Roberts writes not only for young audiences but for parents and grandparents as well. He and the Not Ready for Naptime Players will play at 11 a.m. tomorrow at the Carrboro ArtsCenter. Host Frank Stasio talks with Roberts about his music.

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