At the time of singer-songwriter Sonya Kitchell's first Mountain Stage appearance, recorded in June 2005, she was only 16 — and had released her first album, Words Come Backto Me, just a year earlier. In this archived performance, Kitchell visits Mountain Stage in support of that album, and shows off what host Larry Groce calls "unusual charm and maturity." Her set begins solo before the Mountain Stage band joins her to close out the show.
Born in New Orleans and still in his mid-20s, Frank Ocean has already written songs for major pop stars. He sang on the Kanye West/Jay-Z collaboration Watch the Throne, and he's been part of the tumultuous Los Angeles musical collective known as Odd Future. None of which quite prepares a listener for the beautifully moody music that dominates his new album, Channel Orange.
For his uncompromising and serious music, the 2011 Newport Jazz Festival was eager to present Charles Lloyd. He could bring any group he wanted, they told him. Lloyd said yes, and that he would bring Sangam, an East-West trio with one CD and few performances on the schedule. It was a coup!
Chicago-based journalist Catalina Maria Johnson hosts the 15th installment of World Cafe's Latin Roots music series. Johnson writes in Spanish and English for publications such as HOY, Revista Contratiempo, Gozamos and Nat Geo Music, and is a radio personality and host/producer for the radio program Beat Latino, which airs in Chicago, Mexico City and Berlin.