Frannie Kelley

Frannie Kelley is an Editor for NPR Music.

In this position, Kelley is responsible for editing, producing and reporting NPR Music's coverage of hip-hop, R&B and the ways the music industry affects the music we hear, on the radio and online. She is co-editor of NPR's music news blog, The Record, and co-host of NPR's rap stream Microphone Check, with Ali Shaheed Muhammad.

Since joining NPR in September of 2007, Kelley has worked on a variety of projects including running a series on hip-hop in 1993 and overseeing a project on women musicians. She also ran another series on the end of the decade in music and web-produced the Arts Desk's series on vocalists, called 50 Great Voices. Most recently, her piece on Why You Should Listen to Odd Future was selected to be a part of the Best Music Writing 2012 Anthology.

Prior to joining NPR, Kelley worked in book publishing at Grove/Atlantic in a variety of positions from 2004 to 2007. She has a B.A. in Music Criticism from New York University.

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2:47pm

Mon June 16, 2014
Music

Sound Off: Where The Military's Rhythm Came From

Originally published on Tue June 24, 2014 1:13 pm

U.S. Army soldiers take part in a morning run at Camp New York, Kuwait, in 2002.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

5:35am

Thu May 1, 2014
The Record

'Illmatic': The Making Of A Classic

Originally published on Thu May 1, 2014 5:53 am

Nas in 1994, the year Illmatic was released.
Danny Clinch Courtesy of Sony Legacy

This summer Nas is traveling the world performing his debut album, Illmatic, in full. The crowds coming out to see him — in Texas, Germany and California — are turning up because the 20-year-old record is an acknowledged classic.

In the early '90s hip-hop was just beginning its takeover of popular music. It was landing on the charts, but more often than not, the songs there were novelties (see: MC Hammer, Vanilla Ice).

For the people who took hip-hop seriously, and especially the fans in rap's hometown of New York City, this was a problem.

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4:24pm

Mon April 14, 2014
The Record

Reunited And It Feels A Little Awkward: OutKast At Coachella

Originally published on Mon April 14, 2014 4:42 pm

Big Boi (left) and Andre 3000 perform on stage at Coachella during the first stop on OutKast's reunion tour.
Adam Kissick for NPR

5:45am

Thu February 6, 2014

10:03am

Sat July 20, 2013
The Record

Thundercat On Making Music Outside The Lines

Originally published on Mon February 24, 2014 5:41 pm

Stephen "Thundercat" Bruner
B+ Courtesy of Motormouth Media

Session musician Stephen Bruner has played bass in other people's bands for more than a decade. He can play metal, R&B, hip-hop, jazz. And he's been folding all that into his own music, which he puts out under the name Thundercat.

Now, with his second album, he's stepping to the front of the stage.

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