music

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Sound & Vision #4: Gail Ann Dorsey

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Gail Ann Dorsey, a top session bassist and singer-songwriter who’s worked with David Bowie, Bryan Ferry, Dar Williams, Tears For Fears, the Indigo Girls, Gwen Stefani, Lenny Kravitz, and many more, talks recording, touring, and learning to play.

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Swinging Modern Sounds #50: The Big 5-0!

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While it’s possible to find a lot to worry about in the world of contemporary music, there’s always something new to listen to as well, post-historical, outlying, pre- or anti- or minimally digital music. And so maybe there will be five more years of Swinging Modern Sounds.

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Song of the Day: “Just the One I Been Lookin’ For”

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The late Johnnie Taylor boasted a prolific musical career spanning almost 40 years and several different record labels, including a number of collaborations with legendary crooner Sam Cooke. During his tenure at Stax Records, Taylor was reportedly dubbed the “Philosopher of Soul.” His single “Just the One I Been Lookin’ For” proves that the honorific was well-deserved—Taylor’s exultant vocals and vibrant guitar are pitch-perfect.

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Song of the Day: “Good Day Bad”

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Meshell Ndegeocello probably knows the difficulty her audience has pronouncing her name. Maybe that’s why, on her latest album, Comet, Come To Me, she urges us: “if you love me, forget my name.”

You don’t need to know that her surname means “free as a bird” in Swahili to enjoy the rolling beauty of “Good Day Bad,” the third track from this consistently rewarding album.

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Song of the Day: “Unfuck the World”

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The most prominent feature of Burn Your Fire For No Witness is the haunting voice of Angel Olsen. The St. Louis-bred singer’s husky tone sounds a bit like Cat Power with an exposed nerve. Though Olsen is only 27 (or thereabouts), throughout her new record she manages to convey a woundedness we might expect to encounter in a much older person.

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Song of the Day: “Airwaves”

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These days it seems there’s never enough time to get everything done. Or time to think about how there isn’t time to get it done.

Airwaves,” off Ray LaMontagne’s new record Supernova, is just the thing to help us tune into the present moment. “Everybody movin’ so fast,” he rasps, “Makes you feel like you already part of the past.”

Supernova is produced by the Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach.

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