WUNC Music

Robert Plant
Ed Miles

Songs We Love is a series and a podcast that looks at the stories behind some of the songs we're playing on our new music discovery stream, WUNC Music.

This time, Eric Hodge chats with rock icon Robert Plant about the title track of his latest solo record, Carry Fire. It's a dramatic sounding song, and Plant says the idea for it began as a fragment of music he heard during a practice session.

Listen to the episode here:

At a North Carolina nightclub in late May, a woman named Shaneera presided onstage, coyly flicking fake, nut-colored hair over her shoulders. Her eyes, super-sized by drag makeup, were visible from the back of the club as she chanted short spells in Arabic, while her music — all pandemonium and pummel — rattled the venue like a weak earthquake. Despite the diabolical display, when Shaneera looked out into the crowd, her gaze felt unexpectedly tender. At the end of her set, credits rolling behind her, she bowed, removed her wig and laughed herself offstage.

The bugle call of taps. The swell of voices spontaneously joining to sing "We Shall Overcome." The urgency of "Fight The Power." Anthems are songs that tap into the collective emotions that listeners and performers have around an issue, whether it's joyful pride in one's country or rage over injustice.

Mipso - Edges Run
Joseph Blankinship

Songs We Love is a series and a podcast that looks at the stories behind some of the songs we're playing on our new music discovery stream, WUNC Music.

On the latest episode, Eric Hodge chats with Mipso about "Edges Run," the title track off of the band's latest album. 

Libby Rodenbough says the hook for the song came first. She knew that the phrase 'Edges Run' could mean different things to different people, so she wanted to stay true to that theme with the rest of the lyrics.

Mipso
D.L. Anderson

The North Carolina band Mipso decamped to Oregon last winter to record the recently released Edges Run. 

A group of protesters outside of the Greensboro coliseum before R Kelly is scheduled to perform.
Skip Foreman / AP Photo

A Texas woman filed a lawsuit Monday accusing R.Kelly of sexual battery and knowingly infecting her with herpes. This is the latest in a decades-long string of allegations against the R&B artist that detail an array of misconduct, including his repeatedly holding women against their will in a “sex cult.” Hollywood leaders recently renewed the #MuteRKelly movement to demand that companies who profit from his music cut ties.

photo of michelle lhooq in a club
Luis Nieto Dickens

Female and queer artists will make up a majority of the lineup at this year’s Moogfest in downtown Durham. It’s a roster that pushes back against the prominence of men as the creators, performers and promoters in the electronic music industry.

Frightened Rabbit singer Scott Hutchison, whose bleak but often triumphantly arranged rock songs tackled depression, anxiety and self-doubt, was found dead at Port Edgar near South Queensberry, Scotland, around 8:30 p.m. local time on Thursday, Edinburgh Police confirmed in a statement provided to NPR. He was 36.

A picture of the band Wye Oak.
Shervin Lainez / Merge Records

Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack have created and released their fifth album as Wye Oak. The band formed in Baltimore about 10 years ago. Now, the two are working in different geological corners with Wasner in Durham and Stack in Marfa, Texas.

The name of the record is The Louder I Call, The Faster It Runs. It's being hailed by many critics and fans as their finest yet.

WUNC Music and The Durham present Music Trivia
Heather Cook

[Now that the event is over, scroll down for the answer to our video questions]

Activists have been trying since last summer to get the music industry to sever its ties to R&B singer R. Kelly, following years of allegations from women who say the singer sexually and emotionally abused them.

Updated April 30, at 8:00 p.m. ET with a statement from R. Kelly's representative.

A group of women of color within the Time's Up movement are joining a call for the music industry to cut their ties to R&B singer R. Kelly, making it the latest volley in a larger online campaign called #MuteRKelly.

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WUNC Music
WUNC

As we head in to the weekend, check out some videos for some of the songs we're really digging right now.

Superchunk - Erasure

The second single from the band's latest, 'What A Time To Be Alive.' Keep your eyes peeled for a cameo from Mudhoney's Steve Turner.

Neko Case - Bad Luck

Rhiannon Giddens isn't afraid to carry the weight of history in her music. The North Carolina singer-songwriter and banjoist is a founding member of the Grammy-winning group the Carolina Chocolate Drops which won both critical acclaim and loyal fans for their revival of the African-American string band tradition.

A photo of the band Superchunk.
Lissa Gotwals / Merge Records

Decades after forming, Chapel Hill band Superchunk is sounding as engaged and vital as ever.  The new recording is called What A Time To Be Alive and features some vocal assistance from Stephin Merritt from Magnetic Fields, Katie Crutchfield from Waxahatchee and Skylar Gudasz.  But aside from that, the tempos and the roar of guitars are undiminished by time.

Daniel Romano - Modern Pressure
New West Records

Songs We Love is a series and a podcast that looks at the stories behind some of the songs we're playing on our new music discovery stream, WUNC Music.

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify or Apple Music playlist at the bottom of the page.

Betty Wright - My First Time Around
ATCO Records

Songs We Love is a series and a podcast that looks at the stories behind some of the songs we're playing on our new music discovery stream, WUNC Music.

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats - Tearing At The Seams
Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats

Songs We Love is a series and a podcast that looks at the stories behind some of the songs we're playing on our new music discovery stream, WUNC Music.

Songs We Love is a series and a podcast that looks at the stories behind some of the songs we're playing on our new music discovery stream, WUNC Music.

A picture of Jphono1 and The Chevrons
Kevin Clark

Carrboro-based JPhono1 used to be a solo act. But now, Jphono1 and The Chevrons is officially a band.

The 2016 release Time In The Chevron was head-honcho John Harrison's first experiment in using a band for his Jphono1 project. Well, he must have thought it was a good idea because he's back with an additional band member for the new recording Magic Meadow Hour. It's out now and if you like Dinosaur, Junior, Kurt Vile or Neil Young it could be right up your alley. 

American Tobacco Music
American Tobacco

This year, WUNC's co-sponsored On The Lawn series expands to include not only concerts "on the lawn" at American Tobacco but also "Music Down Under" and "Sounds of Bull City."

Most of the concerts will be on the grassy lawn beneath the Lucky Strike tower as in years past. Others will happen at near the outfield section of Durham Bulls Athletic Park (Home Run Patio) or at the Down Under Patio near Saladelia.

The events are free and open to the public. You're encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets to the "on the lawn" events. No bottles allowed.

American Tobacco Music and Mill Music Sessions
American Tobacco / Rocky Mount Mills

Lawns and patios in Durham and a mill in Rocky Mount will reverberate with the sounds of music this summer in a series of concerts co-sponsored by WUNC.

Mill Music Sessions Return To Rocky Mount For 2018

Apr 9, 2018
Mill Music Sessions 2018
Rocky Mount Mills

It's that time of year to load up the lawn chairs, blankets, family and friends and head out to Rocky Mount Mills for a summer series of concerts co-sponsored by WUNC. Food trucks can help complete your picnic.

In partnership with Schoolkids Records, the series will showcase a range of North Carolina-based musicians.

Sarah Shook and the Disarmers
Courtesy of John Gessner

Sarah Shook and the Disarmers are back with their second release. Years is the follow-up to Sidelong which came out on Bloodshot Records in 2017. 

Mary Bragg and Becky Warren are nursing beers and comparing notes on their conscientiousness.

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