music

music

August 31, 2010
June 06, 2010

Which piece of music would you choose to complement Wendell Berry reading his poems?

May 21, 2010

Some of the best story lines coming out of this year’s World Cup aren’t about sport at all. They’re about people rising above their circumstances, creating something new, defying their genre, being recognized for their talents.

Such is the case with K’naan. The poet and hip-hot artist’s song “Wavin’ Flag” is now the official theme song of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.

A Somali-born Canadian who grew up in Mogadishu before immigrating to North America at the age of 13, he takes an unexpected tact tack when writing lyrics. K’naan doesn’t see much sense, he says, in glorifying the violence and strife that surrounded him in his childhood like many American rappers:

“There wasn’t a voice that understood the, ya know, the gratitude that comes from survival. There wasn’t a voice in music that was doing that.”

April 23, 2010

One song had the power to "unite all African people" during the struggle against apartheid.

February 26, 2010
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February 17, 2010

A hip-hop street dancer from Rio says that it is a gift to know not only your own personal history, but also the history of others.

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February 14, 2010

Replace notes with words and you might say that reading Miller is similar to Mingus "thinking on a piano."

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February 11, 2010

How we arrived at choosing the late Lucille Clifton's "won't you celebrate with me" — with video.

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December 11, 2009

A must-watch performance. And, a rather heart-warming back story from the senior senator from Utah.

July 31, 2009

This video from the World Science Festival in 2009 spread like wildfire online. Join along as McFerrin leads the audience in singing the pentatonic scale.

July 30, 2009

These vids from BBC's "Poetry Season" bring Byron and Blake to life — through punk rock and a soccer presser? Absolutely riveting!

July 02, 2009

Are concert-goers the pilgrims of our time?

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June 19, 2009

Remembering a snowed-in encounter with the Kenyan Nobel Laureate.

June 19, 2009

The late Joe Carter tells the back story of a well-known spiritual.

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June 06, 2009

Video of a troupe of dancers who express their mystical Sufi faith through exuberant movement and traditional music.

April 10, 2009

Last week when I was going through this week’s program with Vigen Guroian, I was listening to some of the choral music for the first time in two years. Later that evening, I put on an old Cocteau Twins CD, Heaven or Las Vegas (which must have been on my mind since SOF had recently been picked up by KNPR in Las Vegas!), and I was struck how some of the lush harmonies were seemingly reminiscent of some of the Orthodox Russian repertoire, or at least Kitka’s Bulgarian folk styling of Nikolai Kedrov’s Otche Nash — “The Lord’s Prayer” in Russian.

March 22, 2009

Music may document history as accurately as any text. Songs from Victor Jara, Mercedes Sosa, Calexico, The Clash, and Chuck Brodsky.

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