Music

Why Music Matters
3:49 pm
Sun August 19, 2012

Dark Side Of The Operating Room

Divya Singh in the operating room.
Anna Boiko-Weyrauch

Originally published on Sun August 19, 2012 5:20 pm

Weekends on All Things Considered continues its "Why Music Matters" series with a story from the operating room.

"The O.R. is a naturally rhythmic place, in that you have the beating of the anesthesia machines and the autoclave comes on," says Divya Singh, an orthopedic and hand surgeon. "So music just becomes another sound."

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Music News
2:19 pm
Sun August 19, 2012

Arizona Dranes, Forgotten Mother Of The Gospel Beat

Detail from a print advertisement for Arizona Dranes' Okeh recordings.
Tompkins Square

Originally published on Sun August 19, 2012 5:20 pm

In the 1920s, the sound of music in the black church underwent a revolution. Standing at 40th and State Street in Chicago, Roberts Temple Church of God in Christ was a witness to what occurred.

The high-energy gospel beat of the music that can still be heard in this Pentecostal church is the creation, music critics say, of Arizona Dranes, a blind piano player, a woman who introduced secular styles like barrelhouse and ragtime to the church's music.

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Music Interviews
7:54 am
Sun August 19, 2012

Bill Fay: A Cult Figure Returns, Skeptical But Optimistic

Bill Fay's new album Life Is People is out August 21.
Courtesy of Steve Gullick

Originally published on Sun August 19, 2012 3:19 pm

In the early 1970s, British musician Bill Fay recorded a couple of luscious folk albums — which didn't sell very well. Fay was dropped from label after label, and though he continued to write his storybook songs over the years, he eventually fell off the map.

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Music Al Fresco
5:21 am
Sun August 19, 2012

A Honky-Tonk Duo Takes The Piano Outdoors

Pianist Kirby Lee Hammel and drummer Jake Alexander perform as Clangin' & Bangin' at an Oakland farmers market.
Nina Thorsen KQED

Originally published on Sun August 19, 2012 1:41 pm

Weekend Edition continues its series on the sounds of music al fresco with a musical act founded on a very inconvenient choice. You'd think a street musician would want to travel light when selecting an instrument — say, a ukulele, a violin, maybe a guitar. But a piano?

"It's about 300 pounds," says Kirby Lee Hammel. "Only one pulled muscle in the last year and a half, I think."

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Music Interviews
2:23 pm
Sat August 18, 2012

Rhiannon: An Improviser Resists The Urge To Reuse

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"There was this sensation of going on a journey together, without seat belts," says Rhiannon of her band's first totally improvised performance. Her newest album is called Spontaneous.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 6:14 pm

If you ever listened to jazz vocalists and wondered if you could ever in your life scat like them, there's someone who's willing to teach you. The vocalist Rhiannon has long held the importance of improvisation as a personal credo, and in her career has blended that art form with jazz, world music and storytelling.

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