Bettye LaVette's first single in 1963 was a major hit, but for the next 40 years, the R&B singer bounced between label deals and near-destitution as her peers such as Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye and Diana Ross became superstars. LaVette grew up in Detroit, the birthplace of Motown, but the label's founder Berry Gordy Jr. never brought her onto his roster.
But LaVette is having the last laugh. At age 74, she's now enjoyed five Grammy nominations and numerous lifetime achievement awards. LaVette's new studio album Blackbirds is the ninth record she's released since 2003, when she kicked off a late-career resurgence.
She brought The Who's Pete Townshend to tears when she performed Love Rain Over Me at the 2008 Kennedy Center Honors. It led to her performing at President Barack Obama's inauguration ceremony.
Her talent for finding new emotion in other people's songs is such that Justin Hayworth from the Moody Blues once told her that he'd written Nights in White Satin, but he never understood it until she sang it. Her voice, both on stage and in person, is what makes LaVette so extraordinary.
After all these years, she's in a lane of her own. Bettye LaVette is the last of the great women of R&B's golden era.
LaVette joined us for a conversation about her long career as the underdog of American blues.
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Data Lords is a new double-album by Grammy Award-winning composer and bandleader Maria Schneider. Inspired by conflicting relationships between the digital and natural worlds, the recording features Schneider's acclaimed orchestra of 18 world-class musicians.
Schneider says; "No one can deny the great impact that the data-hungry digital world has had on our lives. As big data companies clamor for our attention, I know that I'm not alone in struggling to find space – to keep connected with my inner world, the natural world, and just the simpler things in life," says Schneider. "Just as I feel myself ping ponging between a digital world and the real world, the same dichotomy is showing up in my music. In order to truly represent my creative output from the last few years, it felt natural to make a two- album release reflecting these two polar extremes."
In the latest, 89.9WUCF: Orlando FL Magazine - Bob Kelley reviews the latest from keyboardist and arranger Antonio Adolfo - we celebrate the birth of tenor saxophonist Sonny Rollins - and Maria Schneider lets us in on her take of two polarized worlds with "Data Lords". LISTEN TO THE SEGMENT
"How would Beethoven's musical birthday party look like? His patrons must have provided a place at a beautiful palace. His friends and pupils would gather together while the music of his close seniors and juniors playing in the background. This pleasant imagination is the source of my plan for an upcoming music festival," said cellist Yang Sung-won.
A series of concerts under the title "Happy Birthday Ludwig!" will be held featuring the chamber music of those who interacted with Beethoven. The concert series planned by Professor Yang Sung-won of the College of Music of Yonsei University will be held four times from October 16 to 18 at the Yeulmaru Art Center in Yeosu, South Jeolla Province, and three times from October 13 to 15 at the Kumho Art Hall in Seoul. The concerts to be held at the Yeulmaru Art Center is the fifth event of the Yeulmaru Chamber Music Festival that has been directed by Professor Yang. Those to be held in Seoul will be the closing events of the Beethoven's times ‘17'20, a Beethoven's chamber music series that has been showcased at the Kumho Art Hall since 2017.
"I have received many offers for events to celebrate the 250th anniversary of Beethoven's birth for the last two years. However, I was a little concerned that the audience will be tired of his music,' Professor Yang said. "Beethoven inherited the positive sides of his senior musicians and left a great influence on his juniors. I wanted to introduce his music from the perspective of his preceding and following generations."
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"Beauty will save the world." Those are the words of cellist Camille Thomas, whose new album, Voice of Hope, speaks to this very idea. This album concept, at first glance, might have been at risk of feeling overly saccharine. It turns out, it'll take no more than nine seconds before the opening Kaddish by Ravel pulls you in and you know this is no lightweight endeavor from Thomas. This is not a sweet, innocent beauty, but one of visceral yearning, colored with mesmerizing, sometimes hauntingly beautiful soundscapes.
Thomas delivers this, her second release on the Deutsche Grammophon label, alongside musical colleagues very much on her home turf - the Brussels Philharmonic and their French music director Stéphane Denève.
Hear Camille Thomas and Stéphane Denève discuss the recording of Never Give Up on 90.1WRTI: Philadelphia
Canada's most successful songwriters, composers and music publishers are will be honoured in the 31st annual SOCAN Awards, held for the first time online, with Shawn Mendes solidifying his place in songwriting royalty earning two of the most prestigious prizes, becoming the most-awarded SOCAN member in a single year.
Follow @socanmusic on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter (#2020SOCANawards) to join in the celebration of more than 50 award winners announced today through September 25th via special virtual presentation. Celebrations include Drake, LIGHTS, bülow, Andrew Lockington, Daniel Caesar, Laila Biali and more.
Biali has some new music for fall/winter including the release of Anthem by Leonard Cohen.
Laila Biali released her cover of 'Anthem' by Leonard Cohen last Friday, Sept 18, for Leonard's birthday celebration TODAY Sept 21.
The 2019 JUNO-Award winner covers her fellow Canadian and music icon with his relevant song that delivers a salient message for the times we find ourselves in: "Ring the bells that still can ring. Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack in everything, that's where the light gets in." Leonard would have turned 86 today.
This single releases on the heels of Laila's highly succsessful 2020 album release, Out of Dust, which came out on March 27 and features an expansive ensemble of instrumentalists and singers including GRAMMY Award winners and nominees Lisa Fischer, John Ellis, Larnell Lewis, and others.
CBC Radio 1 is premiering the track today along with the Quarantunes video. Watch the attached
In 1968, a 16-year-old jazz fan at Palo Alto High School in California decides to hold a concert in the school's auditorium to raise funds for its International Club-and convinces Thelonious Monk's manager that his client should be the headliner. (Not surprisingly, the student, Danny Scher, would soon become a major force in the live-music production world.) As concert day approaches, one of the school's janitors, an audio enthusiast, offers to tune the piano in exchange for recording the show, a deal that's quickly agreed to. On the afternoon of October 27, the Thelonious Monk Quartet gives its only known high-school performance. Afterward, the janitor (his name apparently lost to history, though researchers are no doubt still working on that) hands the young promoter a tape. It goes in a box, where it sits for the next 50 years. When its owner rediscovers it, he contacts Monk's son T.S., who-first tickled by the story, then impressed by the recording's quality-sanctions its release.
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In the fall of 1968, a sixteen-year old high school student named Danny Scher had a dream to invite legendary jazz pianist and composer Thelonious Monk and his all-star quartet to perform a concert at his local high school in Palo Alto, CA.
Violinist Daniel Hope spent his period of social distancing by performing chamber concerts online from his living room in Berlin with specially invited guests including Christoph Israel, Till Brönner, Matthias Goerne and more.
World-renowned singer-songwriter Melody Gardot announces her long-awaited new album along with the release of a highly anticipated single which sees her join forces with 17-time Grammy Award winning music icon Sting.
The Tiny Desk is working from home for the foreseeable future. Introducing NPR Music's Tiny Desk (home) concerts, bringing you performances from across the country and the world. It's the same spirit - stripped-down sets, an intimate setting - just a different space.
"I hope everybody stays safe and is good to each other," Víkingur Ólafsson says at the end of this beautiful four-song set.
Before he packed his final bags to return to his native Iceland, the pianist gave one last performance from his home in Berlin. His career has moved from strength to strength, releasing three terrific albums in a row (Philip Glass, J.S. Bach, Debussy-Rameau). And now that he has a young son, he wants to spend as much time with the family as possible these days.
After grounding us in the resilient music of Bach, Ólafsson offers a crash course in the fascinating music of Jean-Philippe Rameau and Claude Debussy, two French composers who lived nearly 200 years apart. Ólafsson connects the dots between the two seemingly strange bedfellows, illustrating his points with demonstrations on his Steinway.
Ólafsson has penchant for making transcriptions, taking pieces written for other instruments and making them his own. He closes with "The Arts and the Hours," his mesmerizing arrangement of a scene from Rameau's final opera, which he plays as a farewell to his Berlin apartment.
J.S. Bach (arr. Stradal): "Andante" (from Organ Sonata No. 4)
Rameau: "Le rappel des oiseaux"
Debussy: "The Snow is Dancing" (from Children's Corner)
Rameau (arr. Ólafsson): "The Arts and the Hours" (from Les Boréades)
Debussy has been with me as far back as I can remember, but my first encounter with the keyboard music of Rameau was Emil Gilels' 1951 recording of "Le rappel des oiseaux", which I came across during my student days in New York. I was immediately fascinated by the music and how well it lends itself to the modern piano, at least in Gilels' noble rendition, with its layered textures and light and shades. But it wasn't until the spring of 2019, as I waited (and waited and waited) for the birth of my first child that I finally had the chance, having cleared some weeks in my concert schedule, to sit down with all of Rameau's published keyboard works and read through every one of them. A world of wonder revealed itself: ingenious works of remarkable diversity, rarely programmed or recorded on the modern instrument.
Following his critically-acclaimed Johann Sebastian Bach album, pianist Vikingur Ólafsson releases a double LP of Bach Reworks, featuring new arrangements of his Bach transcriptions from electronic artists such as Valgeir Sigurðsson and Ben Frost (Prelude BWV 855a), Peter Gregson (Above and Below, B Minor), and Ryuichi Sakamoto (BWV 974 – II Adagio – Rework).
Following his critically acclaimed recording of piano works by Philip Glass, Icelandic pianist Víkingur Ólafsson will release his second concept album, Bach, on Deutsche Grammophon on September 7, 2018 (CD released 9/14). The album is available for pre-order everywheretoday.
Renowned for his innovative musical projects, Ólafsson offers listeners a very personal vision of Bach's intricate keyboard music on his new recording – artfully weaving Bach's original works together with transcriptions by Busoni, Kempff, Ziloti, Rachmaninov and Ólafsson himself. Ólafsson will also perform some of the repertoire from the album live at venues including London's LSO St Luke's, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Humlebæk (Denmark), Hamburg's Laeiszhalle, and the Berlin Philharmonie during the 2018-19 season.
For Icelandic pianist Víkingur Ólafsson's debut album on Deutsche Grammophon, he is performing selections of Philip Glass's Piano Etudes to be released on January 27, in time for the composer's 80th birthday. Ólafsson's fascination with reinterpreting the Piano Etudesgrew as he toured and performed the works with Glass himself. "On the surface, they seem to be filled with repetitions. But the more one plays and thinks about them, the more their narratives seem to travel along in a spiral," he explains. "My approach to each of the etudes is to enable the listener to create his or her own personal space of reflection."
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