When the Canadian Brass came to NPR for a Tiny Desk Concert, the group kicked off the show with a piece its members say has been central to its repertoire for more than 40 years. It's a transcription of an organ work, Johann Sebastian Bach's "Little" Fugue in G Minor.
If you drive about an hour and a half north of Santa Fe, N.M., into a place called the Chama Canyon, you might hear the clanging of church bells in the distance. The Monastery of Christ in the Desert was founded there in 1964 and is home to a community of Benedictine monks. They spend their days in prayer, work, meditation — and music.
The Denver folk group The Lumineers was founded in 2002 by Wesley Schultz and Jeremiah Fraites, who grew up together in the New Jersey suburb of Ramsey. In its early days, the band had its sights on nearby New York as the gateway to success.
Originally published on Wed January 2, 2013 5:34 pm
The Puerto Rican drummer Henry Cole is probably best known in the U.S. as a stellar jazz accompanist, with bands led by compatriots and saxophonists David Sánchez and Miguel Zenón. Back in San Juan, Cole also works with poets and rappers, bomba musicians and pleneros, rockers and salsa ringleaders. He found they could all get down to Fela Kuti-style Afrobeat, and many jam sessions later, he found a way to record that sound for the 2012 album Roots Before Branches, with top New York jazz soloists coursing through it.
Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 4:59 pm
In addition to being a very good performance of a very likeable song, this YouTube clip is a very specific and increasingly rare type of cover.
The performers are the Joshua Redman Trio: Reuben Rogers on bass, Gregory Hutchinson on drums, Redman on alto saxophone. (He usually plays tenor or soprano, so this is unusual.) And the tune is "Riddle Me This," by Aaron Parks, who is roughly Redman's contemporary. As you see, Aaron Parks is not on this gig, nor could he, as a pianist, possibly play in the Joshua Redman Trio.
Originally published on Wed October 17, 2012 11:00 am
It began with a song. The roots of Portland's Alialujah Choir go back to Adam Selzer and Adam Shearer's collaboration on an all-Portland charity compilation, (D)early Departed. It seemed a natural choice to pair the Adams, the former known for his work as a producer at Type Foundry studios and as part of the band Norfolk & Western; the latter the affable and increasingly visible frontman of the local band Weinland. "A House, A Home" was the result — a song that builds a fictionalized doomed romance into the real-life historical backdrop of Dr.