music

Richard Ha / Flickr Creative Commons

Every year, we do a Song of the Summer show. It always makes people angry. There is no evidence that it has ever made people happy. A lot of it has to do with the way we define the term.

Crystal Emery

This hour, New Haven-based filmmaker Crystal Emery takes us behind the scenes of her new documentary  "Black Women in Medicine." We meet some of the women profiled in her film, and discuss recent efforts to increase diversity in the science and medical fields. 

Concord Music Group

Paul Simon's 13th solo studio album, Stranger to Stranger, is out on Friday. It has apparently been gestating for going on four years, and it's full of Harry Partch's microtonal instruments like cloud chamber bowls and the chromelodeon. Dean Drummond's zoomoozophome even makes an appearance. At the same time, the album is pretty rockin' and fun.

The federal government is moving to ban virtually all sales of items containing African elephant ivory within the U.S. For a long time it's been illegal to import elephant ivory. This new rule extends the ban to cover ivory that's already here.

Ravid Kahalani

The music industry loves to label bands in categories like folk, funk, or jazz, but Ravid Kahalani, founder of Yemen Blues, proudly calls his ensemble "just good music."

Enid Farber / Mario Pavone

Appropriately titled Blue Dialect, bassist/composer Mario Pavone’s fourth piano trio album flows with the fluent, articulate grace and freedom of a great, witty conversation, reveling in spontaneous, interactive musical dialogues in which everyone gets to speak his mind. 

Shawn Robbins / Creative Commons

As celebrity milestone birthdays go, Dylan’s 75th passed pretty quietly last Tuesday.

Steven Sussman

If you were selecting a patron saint of jazz for Hartford, a strong contender for canonization would most certainly be Paul Brown, a miracle worker whose countless good works for the music and local jazz musicians over many decades brought great joy, peace and comfort to the capital city.     

Kevin Bishop

Many of you around here know Kevin Bishop, a violist and Hartt School grad who has established himself as one of the region’s most enterprising musical figures.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

If you could hop into a time machine and transport yourself forward to a 23rd-century concert hall, what music would you hear -- and what would the instruments look like? From a classroom at Yale University, WNPR explored one possible future musical timeline.

James Spione / Katie Bull

Growing up in her parents’ hip, intellectually buzzing bohemian digs -- vibrant cultural and social centers where cadres of jazz musicians, modern dancers and experimental theater artists hung out and jammed -- it’s little wonder that the extraordinary improvisational singer/songwriter Katie Bull was destined to become an artist.

John Schiller / Creative Commons

When we last looked in on the Hartford Symphony Orchestra a little more than three months ago, the management and players had just settled on a new four-year contract.

gracekellymusic.com

It was one of those historic, passing-of-the-torch moments when the legendary Phil Woods, a monarch of the alto saxophone, took off his signature leather fisherman’s cap and, in a regally symbolic act of confirmation, placed it on the head of a worthy heir-apparent, the then 14-year-old alto prodigy, Grace Kelly.

W.A.S.T.E.

Rather than me ham-handedly trying to summarize Stephen Metcalf's Slate cover story, "Donald Trump, Baby Boomer," read his thesis below.

W.A.S.T.E.

This hour, the Nose does its best to tackle four full topics.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Kate Callahan has been a fixture of the Connecticut music scene for years -- and now she's got a title to prove it. Earlier this year the singer-songwriter was named Connecticut’s 16th State Troubadour

Joe Mabel / Creative Commons

Gary Bartz, a long reigning, if not officially crowned, jazz master and one of the music’s all-time great alto saxophonists, is the headliner for the Hartford Jazz Society’s Concert and Workshop series on Friday, May 6, at 8:00 pm at the Polish National Home, 60 Charter Oak Avenue, Hartford.

TIDAL

We plan to spend upwards of half of this hour unpacking Beyonce's new visual album, Lemonade. And we will barely have gotten the wrapper off by the time we're done.

YouTube / Creative Commons

Last week, Alex Ross, the great classical music critic of The New Yorker, offered a vivid recollection of a concert he saw back in 2004.

Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, the drummer and leader of The Tonight Show's house band The Roots, says he's obsessed with the creative process. His new book, somethingtofoodabout, is a collection of his interviews with chefs about how art and creativity apply to their preparation and presentation of food.

Matthew Sussman / Jane Ira Bloom

Jane Ira Bloom, the innovative soprano saxophonist and composer, loves to tap into non-musical art forms as sources of inspiration for her bold, original music.

The types of conversations I saw online about Harriet Tubman, Prince and Beyonce over this past week have yet to be duplicated in our nation's discussion of politics. I think that's a bad thing. And I will tell you why.

But first, let's try to put the week in some sort of perspective.

It is possible that the week was the Internet's Blackest Week. Ever.

On Saturday night, Beyoncé shook the music world with an hourlong feature on HBO, and then a surprise album — Lemonade.

Beyoncé couldn't have produced a body of work this defiant, or blunt, two years ago. Lemonade has been made possible by the cultural, social and political upheaval we're in the midst of, triggered by the deaths of boys and fathers and women, who will never be forgotten.

Since the news of Prince's death broke on Thursday, fans have been flocking to the late artist's Paisley Park estate in Minnesota to celebrate his life.

Hundreds of fans, many of whom wore purple, showered the security fence surrounding the property with cards, flowers, stuffed animals and purple balloons, over the weekend to pay tribute to The Purple One.

Scott Penner / flickr creative commons

His Royal Badness died yesterday. He was 57.

This hour, an appreciation of Prince.

When Owen Husney first met Prince Rogers Nelson, the musician was barely old enough to vote — and still going by his government name. "When you meet someone before they became the unapproachable icon, you tend to have a different relationship with them," he says.

Prince — the Purple One, who reeled off pop hits in five different decades — has died at age 57. The shocking news was confirmed by Prince's publicist after reports that police were investigating a death at his Paisley Park compound outside Minneapolis.

"It is with profound sadness that I am confirming that the legendary, iconic performer Prince Rogers Nelson has died at his Paisley Park residence this morning at the age of 57," publicist Yvette Noel-Schure said. "There are no further details as to the cause of death at this time."

Metropolitan Opera / Facebook

If you pay any attention to the music world, you already know that James Levine announced last week that he is stepping down as artistic director of the Metropolitan Opera, an institution he has been associated with for 40 years.

Pramod Pradhan / Hartford Public Library

Basking in warm, sentimental, adulatory acclaim, pianist Emery Austin Smith -- a high-energy octogenarian and one of the last great patriarchs of Hartford’s first Golden Age of Jazz -- returns once again.

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