The Newport Folk Festival's history is dotted with historic moments involving musical icons — Bob Dylan plugging in jumps immediately to mind. But, while organizers still take care to stack each festival with huge names and star veterans, the margins are smartly and lovingly curated, too. The 2013 Newport Folk Festival is no different, with an impressive slate of boundary-pushers and genre-eschewers. Here are five of the newest and most promising faces, with a downloadable song from each.
Electric Light Orchestra frontman Jeff Lynne joins host David Dye on this edition of the World Cafe. ELO released a string of ultra-melodic hits throughout the '70S, like "Strange Magic" and "Livin' Thing," and for the next decade Lynne developed into one of the most sought after producers. Tonight he talks about his latest projects, re-recording ELO's Zoom and his very personal solo album "Armchair Theatre." Then in the second hour, the Latin Roots series continues with a live performance from Argentinean reggae artist Fidel Nadal.
Host David Dye welcomes the Tuareg guitarist Bombino on World Cafe. He was born in Niger and has just become known in the West thanks to his new album "Nomad" produced by The Black Keys' Dan Auerbach. It's a perfect title, as Bombino has had to be on the move his entire life. We'll learn why in tonight's interview, and Bombino performs a stunning live set.
It's Bombino, with host David Dye, tonight at 8 on WCBE.
On this episode of the World Cafe, The Handsome Family join host David Dye in the studio. Brett Sparks first convinced his wife, fiction writer Rennie Sparks, to write lyrics for his music in 1993, launching the duo’s unusual brand of Americana. Wilderness is their new concept album inspired by the animal kingdom. We'll hear a live performance tonight, plus Rennie sticks around as a guest DJ, spinning some of her favorite songs about animals.
The spotlight's on The Handsome Family, tonight at 8 on WCBE!
Host David Dye’s guest on the World Cafe is José James. Since 2008, he's released four discs ranging from a collection of standards to his latest, called No Beginning No End, which fuses jazz with hip-hop. James tells the story behind the new album's hit track "Trouble," and we'll hear that tune and more as he and his band play live tonight.
It's music and conversation with host David Dye and Jose James on World Cafe, tonight at 8 on WCBE!
When Guns N' Roses released the album Chinese Democracy five years ago, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman commented that, questions of politics aside, the GNR sound just wasn't most Chinese folks' cup of tea.
"According to my knowledge," he said, "a lot of people don't like this kind of music because it's too noisy and too loud."
World Cafe is exploring the musical culture of Brazil this week for the latest Sense of Place series. Do Amor play a live set drawn from their new rock album, Piracema, recorded on location in Rio de Janeiro, and the band talks about their experience touring with Brazilian icon, Caetano Veloso. Then in the second hour, it's a Tropicália showcase; we'll revisit a session from the archives with Os Mutantes, who were at the heart of the movement in the late '60s. Plus, we learn about the origins of Tropicália from Latin music expert, Jasmine Garsd.
When singer-songwriter Jason Isbell used to get drunk, he'd sometimes tell his then-girlfriend, the musician Amanda Shires, that he needed to quit the bottle — and that if it was going to take, he'd have to go to rehab. Eventually, she said the next time he told her that, she'd hold him to it. And she did. And he went. And, he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross, "The jury is still out on whether or not it worked, but it worked today and all the days leading up to this."
Initially, he says he was scared about what sobriety would do to his personality and his creativity.
Enjoy live performances from some of Brazil's greatest contemporary artists on this Sense of Place edition of the World Cafe. First stop is Rio de Janeiro, where Sylvio Fraga showcases his unique take on samba and talks about his other profession as a published poet. We'll revisit sessions from the archives with Forró in the Dark, who play a fusion style of Brazilian forró music, and Seu Jorge, known for his work on The Life Aquatic soundtrack. And of course host David Dye provides his own masterful mix of Brazilian music throughout the two-hour show.