And now to a classical takedown.


BLOCK: That's Pachelbel's "Canon in D," and it appears on one of the hottest releases of the year, "Fifty Shades of Grey: The Classical Album."


Yes, the classical album. It's composed of works that inspired author E.L. James while she was writing her steamy best-selling trilogy. And it has spent 11 weeks on Billboard's Classical Traditional Albums chart, 10 of those in the top slot.

Freelance Whales On World Cafe

Nov 30, 2012

Freelance Whales' members make huge tiny music. Their instruments tend to produce delicate sounds: banjos, violins, xylophones, drums played delicately with brushes. But their songs are arranged in such a way that these small sounds form grand, swelling passages that start out softly, then build to something majestic.

Mulgrew Miller Trio On JazzSet

Nov 30, 2012

When the pianist Mulgrew Miller died on May 29, 2013, following a cerebral hemorrhage, the jazz world grieved the loss of this "wonderful musician and great spirit," in the words of his fellow pianist Kenny Barron.

Tracey Thorn's interpretation of "Maybe This Christmas," by the Canadian singer-songwriter Ron Sexsmith, is typical of her new holiday album, Tinsel and Lights: It's simply arranged, emphasizing Thorn's lovely, delicate voice and bolstered by a firm intelligence; it avoids the fatty treacle that weighs down lots of Christmas albums. Tinsel and Lights mixes familiar songs with new ones, such as the title song written by Thorn.

Mickey Baker, one half of the hit-making duo Mickey and Sylvia in the late '50s and an influential guitarist whose work can be heard on hundreds of records, has died at his home near Toulouse, France.

He was 87.