NPR Music Podcast
Nick Cave: 'The Creative Process Is An Altered State In Itself'
Cave is the subject of a different kind of rock documentary called 20,000 Days on Earth, which attempts to debunk the creative process for what Cave says it actually is: "just hard labor."
Controversial Mexican Musician Temporarily Retires From Drug Ballads
Alfredo Rios, aka El Komander, is the Jay Z of Mexican drug balladeers. He says government pressure, in the form of fines and banned or canceled concerts, is forcing him to think about retirement.
Sergio Mendes On Jazz, Luck And 'The Magic Of The Encounter'
The Brazilian musician and composer says his life has been a succession of serendipitous moments. One of them led to the song that transformed his career — his first hit, "Mas Que Nada."
Sprinting Toward Epiphany: Talking With A Songwriter Turned Novelist
NPR's Lynn Neary talks storytelling with John Darnielle, the creative force behind the indie-folk band The Mountain Goats and author of the new novel Wolf In White Van.
Modern Misbehavin': Jason Moran Gets Into The Mind Of Fats Waller
On a new tribute to Waller, Moran explores his subject's many contradictions: "The son of a preacher, the man who likes to drink, the man who finds his sorrow but expresses it through comedy."
The Lush Twang Of Dobro-Times-Three In 'Three Bells'
The dobro is a fretless guitar that gives country and bluegrass its unique twang. NPR's Wade Goodwyn talks to Jerry Douglas and Rob Ickes about their new album, Three Bells.
Paul Thorn Got Music At Southern Churches, White And Black
Paul Thorn is a tough guy who sings the blues. NPR's Wade Goodwyn talks to the former-prizefighter-turned-musician about his new CD, Too Blessed to Be Stressed.
Remembering Biggie Smalls And 'Ready To Die' 20 Years Later
The writer dream hampton knew the rapper personally, and sat in on the studio sessions for his debut album.
With Prince In Your Corner, It's Good To Be KING
They may have the endorsement of the Purple One, but the women of the R&B group KING have made a point of handling their own affairs. The trio speaks with NPR's Audie Cornish about its debut album.
How The Four Seasons Clashed, Dealt With The Mob And Made Lasting Hits
Bob Gaudio wrote most of The Four Seasons' hits, some of which are compiled in a new anthology. He tells Fresh Air about the band's history, including why its songs had some "anger" in them.
The Re-Education Of Robert Plant
Plant has spent the past half-decade exploring Americana and America itself, traveling through the U.S. and collaborating with roots musicians. Now 66, he's just hoping to stay unpredictable.
Ryan Adams Rips It Up, Starts Again
The prolific songwriter's new self-titled album has the sound of an artist in thrall to making music on his own terms. NPR's Arun Rath visits him at his studio in Hollywood.
Wainwright's New Album: Death, Depression And Parking Spaces
NPR's Lynn Neary speaks with Loudon Wainwright III about his new album, Haven't Got the Blues Yet. It deals with death and heartbreak and guns — but always with a sense of humor.
In Tennessee, Scenes From A Nearly Lost Musical History
Thanks to an intrepid park ranger who became a part-time folklorist, an archive of sound recordings and lyric sheets bears witness to a tradition that could well have died off.
The Full Escovedo: What You May Not Know About Sheila E.
If her Prince-assisted '80s hits are all you know of Sheila Escovedo, you're missing half the story. NPR's Arun Rath speaks with the drummer, singer and bandleader and dives in to her early history.
The Youngest Von Trapp Generation Mashes Cultures
NPR's Scott Simon talks to China Forbes and Thomas Lauderdale of the band Pink Martini, and Sofia, August, Melanie, and Amanda von Trapp about their collaborative album and upcoming performances.
Souls Of Mischief: 'It's Like Catching Lightning In A Bottle'
The Oakland group most widely known for the ageless "93 'til Infinity" has made a new concept album based on a true story. To make it, they went old school.
Sinkane Makes Music For An Open World
"The music that I make can be related to anybody all over the world," Sinkane's Ahmed Gallab says of his uprooted life, which informs a masterful blend of R&B, shoegaze, African and country music.
Dom Flemons Holds On To Those Old-Time Roots
Prospect Hill is Flemons' first album since leaving the band Carolina Chocolate Drops. By coincidence, the multi-instrumentalist recorded it the day Pete Seeger died. Originally broadcast July 30.
Ty Segall Rocks Out — Acoustic-Style, And With More Polish
The garage rocker performs stripped-down versions of songs from his new album, Manipulator, and tells NPR's Arun Rath why the new songs are less rough around the edges than some of his earlier work.
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