Popular Music

Nik Carman (right) records "Wagon Wheel" at Studio Anatomy, accompanied by his brother, Andrew, on guitar.

Interlochen Public Radio is your source for the arts from northern Michigan. Whether you're looking for new music from northern Michigan artists or NPR's First Listen, you'll find the stories here.

The Stray Birds On Mountain Stage

7 hours ago

Last year, The Stray Birds made their third visit to Mountain Stage, bringing us songs from their 2016 album Magic Fire. The record was produced by Larry Campbell, who is known for being a multi-instrumentalist as well as a three-time Grammy-winning producer. The album showcases not only their instrumental talents but their poetic and melodious songwriting abilities as well.

Boston Symphony Orchestra principal flutist Elizabeth Rowe has filed a lawsuit against the orchestra, claiming that she is making substantially less each year than her closest peer — a man.

You're 22, just finished a grueling two-hour nap and have $8.43 left on your prepaid debit card. A friend of a high school acquaintance's cousin invited you to brunch, but you lost your metro pass (again) and free-range restaurant eggs cost a minimum $6. What do you do? You charge to the grocery store around the corner and make a beeline for the three-dollar wine. And when the tired cashier asks if you want to save 10% on all future purchases, you stay focused. Um, do you look like the type of person who can afford an in-store membership? Being alive is expensive. Bad wine is not.

Barbara Carroll On Piano Jazz

11 hours ago

Pianist and vocalist Barbara Carroll (1925 – 2017) was described as a joyous and swinging jazz stylist. A dear friend of McPartland's, Carroll had a monumental career. When she was a guest on the program in 1979, she had just started her engagement at Bemelmans Bar in Manhattan, where she would go on to perform for a remarkable 25 years.

People do not have passive reactions to or moderate opinions about Deafheaven. For the better part of the last decade, the California quintet has overlaid the bleak screech of black metal with layers of neon, giving the infamous form's harsh vibes a sudden sense of romantic longing.

Early on, Kam Franklin didn't take kindly to being told that since the world already had Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings and Brittany Howard and her fellow Alabama Shakes, there just wasn't a slot available for another woman of color fronting a soul outfit.

Luluc's Zoë Randell and Steve Hassett have now made three sweetly comforting albums together, filling each with frequently Nick Drake-ian folk music that's both disarmingly simple and, when called for, dreamily ornate. But Sculptor, the Australians' self-produced follow-up to 2014's wonderful Passerby, also broadens Luluc's palette and subject matter in rewarding ways.

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AILSA CHANG, HOST:

"The Greatest Showman" didn't exactly raise the big top at the box office when it opened last December, but the original soundtrack to this movie musical about P.T. Barnum - that is turning out to be a way different story.

Copyright 2018 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Copyright 2018 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Two men each charged with 36 counts of involuntary manslaughter, representing the three dozen people who perished in the 2016 Oakland, Calif. warehouse fire, pleaded no contest on Tuesday, in a deal letting them avoid trial and possibly lengthy prison terms.

Over the years, some bands who've released recording debuts have launched their careers with a single from the album that, in many cases, was the first song on the first side of their record. In the business, these songs are called "lead-off tracks," denoting the first in a series of songs on an album.

The Thistle & Shamrock: Dear Jean

Jul 4, 2018

Artists celebrate Jean Ritchie (1922-2015) by singing the songs she taught them and by passing along their wisdom. Host Fiona Ritchie explores the reach of Jean's songs and presents music from a commemorative CD featuring Robin and Linda Williams, Peggy Seeger, Kathy Mattea, John McCutcheon and many more artists who were proud to call "The Mother of Folk" their friend.

As the temperature outside climbs well into the 90s, we're getting a bit restless. Luckily, this week Bad Bunny released not one but two bangers to keep us moving, and his collaborator, Arcangel's old other-half De La Ghetto, released a love bop with Maluma and Wisin that will make you yearn for the simpler romances of childhood. Meanwhile, L.A. hometown heroes Inner Wave provide a silky synth wave ballad that will make you want to fall in love in someone's Honda Civic.

We're hitting the middle of summer, so you're either on a beach with a cooler and extra sunscreen (reapply every two hours!), or making that dollar at work and staying cool in air conditioning, counting down the hours to a neighborhood cookout and perhaps a nice glass of rosé.

Musicians visiting Austin are often asked to play in some pretty unusual places. Like, for instance, the unfinished hallway of a KUTX staff member's East Austin home. But for Brent Cowles, the spartan setting provided the perfect opportunity to strip his 2017 single "Cold Times" down to the bare essentials and let his powerful vocals take center stage.

One Song Glory

Jul 4, 2018

The 7-inch sat in my college dorm room, unplayed but displayed — a bright pink foldover cover with red lettering and a crude drawing of two dashing men. There wasn't a way to hear the songs outside of a turntable (at the time, still sitting in my parents' living room), no digital copy available. When you mail-ordered a record, you listened to the record, not the MP3s from a download card.

Richard Swift, a highly regarded producer and solo artist, died early Tuesday morning in Washington state. His death was confirmed by a manager, Adam Katz, but no cause of death was given. He was 41 years old.

A crowdfunding campaign was created last month on Swift's behalf to help pay for treatment of a "life-threatening condition," the details of which were not shared.

There's an intimacy in the way Ray LaMontagne records and performs music that makes you feel like you're peeking through a curtain and listening in on a private moment. And in some ways, you truly are.

Ray is an artist I think of the purest sort. He's in it for the expression, not the attention. That's one of the things that I love about Ray and have loved since his 2004 debut Trouble. And it's the same quality that makes this career path challenging for him.

Shemekia Copeland On Mountain Stage

Jul 3, 2018

As Larry Groce mentions in his introduction, the daughter of Blues Music Hall of Fame member Johnny Copeland is anything but predictable. Her albums have been produced by the likes of Dr. John and Steve Cropper. For 2015's Outskirts of Love, Oliver Wood of The Wood Brothers manned the board.

Michigan band Greta Van Fleet absolutely blitzed through its live session for KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic. The band's brand of classic rock and roll will get you out of your seat. Crank it up for "Safari Song."

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