In German, it's wiegenlied; in French, berceuse; in Norwegian, vuggevise. In any language, the universal effect of what we know as the lullaby is, of course, to coax a baby to sleep.
Violinist Rachel Barton Pine had her own baby in mind when she decided to record a collection of lullabies. Her infant daughter appears on the cover of the new album Violin Lullabies — all folded up, fast asleep, so tiny she just about fits in her dad's hands.
Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 4:49 pm
The first incarnation of the Seattle band Pickwick revolved around Galen Disston's strummy acoustic songs. Disston eventually found himself bored with his own music until a not-so-subtle shift took place; as the band began experimenting with new sounds and ideas, Disston shifted into the role of lead singer and crowds immediately noticed.
In this installment of World Cafe, you'll hear three songs from Pickwick's debut album, Can't Talk Medicine, as well as the full story behind the band's reinvention.
Deafheaven makes music that's both intensely personal and incredibly universal. Its excellent 2011 debut, Roads to Judah, was a blast-beaten, shoegaze-indebted metal record that felt perfectly of its moment. With the new Sunbather coming up so quickly, I wondered where primary members George Clarke (vocals) and Kerry McCoy (guitar) could take a band with such an immediate sound. Apparently, I needn't look further than the Internet.
We'd like to end today with the occasional series we call In Your Ear. That's where some of our guests tell us about the songs they listen to for a little inspiration. Today we hear from Nigerian writer and Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka. He recently received yet another honor, the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award's Lifetime Achievement Prize. This unique prize is given to writers who broaden our vision of race and diversity. When we spoke to Wole Soyinka last year, he also shared his favorite music with us.