Music News & Reviews

First Listen
11:23 am
Sun September 1, 2013

First Listen: Okkervil River, 'The Silver Gymnasium'

Okkervil River's new album, The Silver Gymnasium, comes out Sept. 3.
Ben Sklar Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed September 4, 2013 8:10 am

It's human nature to romanticize a specific time and place in the past — a moment when everything felt just right, or opportunities were laid out like a banquet. For Okkervil River's Will Sheff, it's been impossible to let go of Meriden, N.H., circa 1986: That tiny town is where he spent his childhood (he turned 10 that summer) and where his parents taught at an area boarding school.

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11:18 am
Sun September 1, 2013

WCBE Presents Tuesday Night Music & Mead Sept. 10, 2013!

Tuesday Night Music & Mead

The second Tuesday of every month, Shadowbox Live and Brothers Drake Meadery team up for Mead tastings and great local music! 

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5:14 pm
Sun August 18, 2013

An American Maverick Turns The Symphony On Its Head

Charles Ives, better known as an insurance executive in his time, wrote innovative symphonies incorporating American folk and hymn tunes.

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 12:22 pm

  • Jan Swafford Tells The Story of Composer Charles Ives And His Wife, Harmony

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4:27 pm
Fri August 16, 2013

3rd Annual Columbus Arts Ball Sat. Aug. 17, 2013!

Columbus Arts Ball

WCBE in partnership with the Columbus Arts Ball presents the 3rd annual Arts Ball, a fundraising, masquerade ball benefiting the Ronald McDonald House of Charities of Central Ohio.

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4:24 pm
Wed August 14, 2013

Goodale Park Music Series Presents: The DewDroppers

The DewDroppers

Coming up Sunday August 18th, its the next Goodale Park Music Series  free event at the gazebo for a concert with The DewDroppers.  12-30PM-2PM!

Live Art: Fresh A.I.R. Gallery

Food Carts (subject to change): Crepes a la Carte, Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams, and Short North Bagel Deli

Kids Activities: Columbus Artmobile

Vendors: alison rose, Badala, Candles with a Cause, and Sweet Simpliciteas

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6:40 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

WCBE & Rhythm On The River Present: Rusted Root, Angela Perley & The Howlin' Moons

Rusted Root @ Bicentennial Park

Join us for another free outdoor event for the next Rhythm On The River at Bicentennial Park with Rusted Root with Angela Perley & The Howlin' Moons

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12:04 pm
Sun August 4, 2013

The Civil Wars' Joy Williams On The Duo's Fragile Bond

Joy Williams and John Paul White of The Civil Wars. The duo's new, self-titled album arrives on the heels of canceled tour dates and an ongoing hiatus from performing together.
Tec Petaja Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 4:03 pm

The singing duo The Civil Wars is engaged in a civil war of its own.

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2:03 am
Sat August 3, 2013

Songs Of Africa: Beautiful Music With A Violent History

Fred Onovwerosuoke founded the St. Louis African Chorus 20 years ago.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun August 4, 2013 10:00 am

For the next year, NPR will take a musical journey across America, which is one of the most religiously diverse countries on earth. We want to discover and celebrate the many ways in which people make spiritual music — individually and collectively, inside and outside houses of worship.

The founder of the choral group Sounds of Africa is Fred Onovwerosuoke. He was born in Ghana and brought up in Nigeria, and his choir in the heart of the U.S. — St. Louis, Mo., to be exact — has recorded his arrangements of African sacred music by a composer named Ikoli Harcourt Whyte.

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1:12 pm
Tue July 30, 2013

Maxwell's, The Beloved New Jersey Venue, Closes

Maxwell's, in Hoboken, N.J., hosted Bruce Springsteen, Nirvana and the Replacements, to name a few.
George Kopp

Originally published on Tue July 30, 2013 5:32 pm

The rock club Maxwell's is a tiny space that's hosted some of the biggest names in music for more than 30 years. R.E.M., Nirvana and many more bands have squeezed onto Maxwell's stage in Hoboken, N.J. Native son Bruce Springsteen recorded the music video for "Glory Days" there.

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4:37 pm
Sun July 28, 2013

AlunaGeorge Finds A Natural Groove, By Accident

George Reid and Aluna Francis have become darlings of the European music festival circuit without releasing an album. Body Talk, their full-length debut as AlunaGeorge, is out Monday.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue July 30, 2013 3:54 pm

If it weren't for a MySpace message three years ago, singer Aluna Francis and producer George Reid might never have joined to form AlunaGeorge.

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5:02 pm
Sat July 27, 2013

Piano Mastery, Trinidadian Trumpet, Singing Apes: New Jazz

Trumpeter Etienne Charles' new album is called Creole Soul.
Laura Ferreira Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 10:26 am

It's been too long since we simply sat up and pointed out a few of the many new releases worth a set of ears. Luckily, the staff on weekends at All Things Considered thought the same. They invited me to sit down with host Jacki Lyden and play a few cuts for them.

Here's music from an elder statesman of piano, a trumpeter who understands creole music personally, a drummer who writes tunes with a payoff, and a singer in her early 20s with maturity and kick.

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11:58 am
Sat July 27, 2013

Best Of Brasil Summerfest 2013: Hip Hop, Samba, Tecno Brega And Beyond

Brazilian singer Gaby Amarantos is among the many new faces invading New York at this year's Brasil Summerfest.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu August 8, 2013 5:14 pm

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11:02 am
Sat July 27, 2013

Singer, Songwriter J.J. Cale Dead From Heart Attack At 74

J.J. Cale wrote hits including "After Midnight" and "Cocaine" for Eric Clapton.
R. Diamond WireImage/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat August 3, 2013 9:12 am

J.J. Cale, whose songs became hits for the likes of Eric Clapton and Lynyrd Skynyrd, has died at age 74 from a heart attack, his management agency's website announced.

Cale died at about 8 p.m. Friday at Scripps Hospital in La Jolla, Calif., the Rosebud agency said Saturday.

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9:02 am
Fri July 26, 2013

Why The Newport Folk Festival Is So Special

Mito Habe-Evans NPR Music

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 3:48 pm

  • Hear Newport Folk Producer Jay Sweet Discuss This Year's Festival

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8:57 am
Fri July 26, 2013

5 New Faces Of Folk, At The 2013 Newport Folk Festival

Alynda Lee Segarra records as Hurray For The Riff Raff, one of the emerging acts making its debut at the Newport Folk Festival this year.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue July 23, 2013 6:16 pm

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.

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11:08 pm
Mon July 22, 2013

WCBE Presents The Slide Brothers Thurs. July 25, 2013

WCBE Presents The Slide Brothers

The Slide Brothers have recently released their CD Robert Randolph Presents The Slide Brothers and they'll be making a stop in Columbus on this tour! 

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10:40 pm
Mon July 22, 2013

WCBE & Rhythm On The River Present: IIIrd Tyme Out & Lonesome River Band

IIIrd Tyme Out and Lonesome River Band at Rhythm On The River

It's time for an evening of bluegrass music with Rhythm On The River and WCBE! 

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4:51 pm
Fri July 19, 2013

A Secret Folk Music Holds Firm In China's Badlands

Zhang Junmin (second from right) and his band perform the Lao Qiang music special in northwest China's Shaanxi province. The character behind the stage means "drama"; Lao Qiang music used to accompany puppet plays and includes a strong storytelling component.
Courtesy of Wang Kuanren

Originally published on Fri July 19, 2013 6:12 pm

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."

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2:46 pm
Wed July 17, 2013

Jason Isbell Locates His Musical Compass On 'Southeastern'

Jason Isbell was previously a member of Drive-By Truckers. His solo albums include Sirens of the Ditch and Here We Rest.
Eric England Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed October 30, 2013 10:38 am

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.

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12:27 am
Tue July 16, 2013

Frank Turner: A Punk Poet With A Confessional Streak

Frank Turner's new album is Tape Deck Heart.
Brantley Gutierrez Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun July 14, 2013 12:12 pm

In a review for his last album, NME magazine described British singer-songwriter Frank Turner as "the people's prince of punk poetry." But Turner's lyrics can be quite personal as well. He's got a new album, released this spring, called Tape Deck Heart — and the lead single, "Recovery," is about as confessional as they come.

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