Featured Music Stories

Courtesy of the artist
March 6, 2015 | NPR · The New York Youth Symphony canceled its Carnegie Hall performance of a piece that it recently premiered by Estonian-American composer Jonas Tarm. At issue is his use of a Nazi theme.

Courtesy of Warp Records
March 5, 2015 | NPR · A flood of music — official and semi-secret, after years of silence — puts the career of the electronic musician Richard D. James, best known as Aphex Twin, into new and revealing perspective.

Courtesy of Kiley Kraskouskas
March 4, 2015 | NPR · Watch a great music documentary that wasn’t supposed to be about music. All too quickly, this chronicle of Mali’s Festival in the Desert became a memento of vanished joy.

Emily Berl for NPR
March 2, 2015 | NPR · “I made a promise to myself,” says the Detroit rapper. “I would never ever not follow my heart again. That way if I rise or fall, sink or swim, it’s by my own choice and my own decisions.”

Courtesy of the artist
February 28, 2015 | NPR · From Lana Del Rey to Father John Misty, musicians in the current pop moment who expose themselves, warts and all, do so in isolation, without support or challenge from a like-minded community.

Courtesy of the artist
February 24, 2015 | NPR · 5 years, 40 works: Long Yu wants China and the West to know each other’s contemporary music better. He’s launching a big project to accomplish just that.

Courtesy of RCA Records
February 10, 2015 | NPR · The concert, like Black Messiah, was bulwark: it was a reminder that music’s ability to bring people together to celebrate soulful feeling is, as Fela once remarked, a weapon of the future.

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February 8, 2015 | NPR · The British singer also won Best New Artist and Record of the Year, for “Stay With Me.” Beck won Album of the Year for his subdued, folky Morning Phase.

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February 7, 2015 | NPR · Over the second half of the 20th century, radio gave music its deepest connection to Americans. By splitting the dial into different formats, it produced a pop scene of striking diversity.

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February 6, 2015 | NPR · During a Grammy telecast that’s over three hours, only a dozen or so awards are handed out — but there will be a boatload of performances, most with more than one marquee musician on stage at a time.


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Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA
March 6, 2015 | NPR · On Friday morning, NASA’s Dawn mission will arrive at the dwarf planet Ceres. NPR’s Geoff Brumfiel reports on the end of an odyssey to explore an odd, in-between world.

March 6, 2015 | NPR · New England businesses are taking stock after weeks of record-setting winter storms disrupted transportation, stopping many workers from doing their jobs. Telecommuting is helping Boston get by.

Spider Martin/Courtesy Tracy Martin
March 6, 2015 | WBHM · Some of the most iconic images of marchers being attacked by Alabama state troopers at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in 1965, were captured by a white photojournalist who stumbled onto the historic events.

Arts & Life

Courtesy of Free Play Pictures
March 5, 2015 | NPR · A new film follows daters ages 70 to 90 looking for love in five-minute intervals. “Speed dating for seniors” may sound funny, but The Age of Love is really about our lifelong need for intimacy.

March 5, 2015 | NPR · Kazuo Ishiguro’s latest recalls the plays and novels of Samuel Beckett. It’s a masterful blend of fantasy, Arthurian romance, myth, legend and postmodern absurdity — and it’s unforgettable.

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March 5, 2015 | NPR · The comedian wrote and stars in Fish in the Dark, a play about rivalries and dysfunction when a family patriarch dies. David says the idea came to his “twisted mind” when his friend’s dad passed away.


Courtesy of the artist
March 5, 2015 | WBGO+JAZZ.org · For trumpeter and composer Igmar Thomas, much in contemporary music has clearly evolved from the jazz of eras past. It’s the insight behind his big band, which recently visited his alma mater.

March 5, 2015 | WBGO+JAZZ.org · When trumpeter and composer/arranger Steven Bernstein started working with the virtuoso pianist Henry Butler, certain unique ideas — “Henryisms” — came to the fore.

March 5, 2015 | NPR · Eddie Henderson may never have quite gotten his due, but there’s still time to correct that.

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