Originally published on Wed July 25, 2012 10:06 am
Archie Powell has been surrounded by music since he was little: His father was a violinist in the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and Powell himself picked up the guitar at 11, so songwriting became a natural next step for the music prodigy. He joined up with his band The Exports — brothers Ryan, Adam and RJ Export play keyboards, bass and drums, respectively — soon after college. By 2010, the Chicago-based power-pop band was ready with its first full-length studio album, Skip Work.
Petra Anderson is a gifted 22-year-old composer and violinist who was critically injured in the movie theater shootings last Friday in Aurora, Colo. She was shot four times. Three shotgun pellets landed in her arm and a fourth nearly killed her.
It was a magical experience having reggae legend Jimmy Cliff here at KCRW for the first time, as the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer played a set of timeless classics and fantastic cuts off his new album, Rebirth. In an intimate, soul-stirring set — he sang and played acoustic guitar, with just one other musician accompanying him — Cliff's voice sounds as strong as ever, and his spirit is truly inspiring.
I'm usually a fan of "between" albums — the ones that break away from an artist's established sound, either tentatively or extravagantly, exploring the extremes of inspiration. These records are often misunderstood upon immediate release, but offer clues to an artist's discography over time.