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American Music

Les Paul's Journey and the History of American Popular Music

John Covach | Posted 06.09.2015 | Arts
John Covach

American guitarist Les Paul would have turned 100 years old this week. Born in Waukesha, Wisconsin on June 9, 1915, Paul became one of the most important figures in popular music during the middle decades of the twentieth century.

Where Did Our Musical Legacy Go?

Leonard Slatkin | Posted 05.18.2014 | Arts
Leonard Slatkin

While I was looking at not only the artists, but the programing as well, an astonishing statistic jumped out at me.

The Case for Barber and Britten

Daniel Asia | Posted 01.23.2014 | Arts
Daniel Asia

For the past six years I have directed a festival of 20/21st century music at the University of Arizona. Any festival worthy of the name has a vision or reason for being.

Songs That Matter: The Band, 'The Weight'

Anne Margaret Daniel | Posted 09.25.2013 | Arts
Anne Margaret Daniel

"The Weight" belies its name by beginning lightly, with the keen tickle of strings, precise yet also casual. You feel like you're on someone's porch, down home, listening to a few folks make music at sundown.

Carter Is Dead

Daniel Asia | Posted 06.25.2013 | Arts
Daniel Asia

Carter's death has brought about a number of hagiographic articles confirming his stature as one of the greatest American composers of the latter half of the 20th century. He finds approval and embraces from some of our finest conductors and performers.

'Charleston' Creator A Pioneer Among Black Composers

Marin Alsop | Posted 04.22.2013 | Arts
Marin Alsop

I first read about Johnson and his orchestral compositions in a liner note to a Gershwin recording. When I tracked down the author, Robert Kimball, he told me the fascinating story of James P.'s life and career.

New American Noise: Portland and New Orleans

Abteen Bagheri | Posted 03.20.2013 | Entertainment
Abteen Bagheri

Portland uses vintage units to create a modern sound, New Orleans samples the same beats from the late '80s to create sissy bounce. There's something cyclical about these scenes. The youth revisits the past and makes it their own.

Snapshots Of A Disappearing Delta

Posted 03.28.2012 | Arts

Few places other can claim as much in the way of the musical style as the Mississippi Delta; however, as much as the Delta is known as "the birthplace...

The Real Celebration at the NEA Jazz Masters Awards

Barbara Ernst Prey | Posted 03.16.2012 | Arts
Barbara Ernst Prey

This is a memorable event, not only for the opportunity to hear, see and meet some of the living Jazz legends but, also to be part of the group as the Jazz Masters greet one another.

Global Beat Fusion: Buzzing Cicadas and Jewish Gangsters

Derek Beres | Posted 05.25.2011 | Entertainment
Derek Beres

While I doubt that Kosher Nostra: Jewish Gangsters Greatest Hits will reveal much about the secret politics of the Jewish mob, this collection will hip you to a few generations of what past thugs were grooving to.

Does America Also Need Cultural Health Care?

Rob Patterson | Posted 05.25.2011 | Entertainment
Rob Patterson

The majors were an almost ghostly presence at SXSW 2010. The indies have now seized the day within the leading-edge music market.

This Week in Magazines: An Electric-Fuel-Trade Acid Test and the South Rises Against the New Yorker

James Warren | Posted 05.25.2011 | Media
James Warren

Those old, wicked animosities between New York City and Conway, Ark., are heating up.