Music

8:41am

Tue December 20, 2011
Holiday Music

A Paul Winter Solstice Concert 2011

Originally published on Mon December 19, 2011 7:09 pm

The Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in New York City.
Rhonda R. Dorsett
  • Lay Down Your Burden
  • English Horn Theme From On The Steppes Of Central Asia
  • Remembering

For more than a quarter-century, saxophonist Paul Winter has celebrated the longest night of the year with a concert. For the 22nd straight year, NPR presents Paul Winter's annual Winter Solstice Celebration, held at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in Upper Manhattan.

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10:01pm

Mon December 19, 2011
Music

Two Takes On Christmas Music: Sweet And Sour

Originally published on Wed December 21, 2011 10:04 am

Bob Dorough circa 1960.
Jon Sievert Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

What do you get when one of the songwriters behind a beloved children's program and a champion of challenging new music each approach Christmas songs in their own ways?

Not what you might expect.

Saxophonist, composer and MacArthur "genius" John Zorn is also a record producer who runs his own label, Tzadik — the Hebrew word for "righteous one." The top of the label's website reads:

Tzadik is dedicated to releasing the best in avant-garde and experimental music.

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10:40am

Mon December 19, 2011
World Cafe

Pearl And The Beard On 'World Cafe: Next'

Pearl and the Beard's most recent album is titled Killing The Darlings.
Courtesy of the artist

With endless three-part harmonies at its disposal, Pearl and the Beard is a folksy pop trio with a flair for lovely acoustic Americana. Members Jocelyn MacKenzie, Emily Hope Price and Jeremy Styles each convey a unique vocal style, influence and vision, with the help of cello, glockenspiel, non-traditional drums, accordion and guitar.

Pearl and the Beard's 2011 album Killing the Darlings has been charming fans and critics since last spring. Given the trio's tremendous chemistry and charm, it looks primed to build on that buzz in 2012.

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9:27am

Mon December 19, 2011
Music

The Music of 2011

Julia Folsom Flickr - Creative Commons

Ahhh, December-- the month of glorious holidays and end-of-year-lists... 

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8:58am

Sun December 18, 2011
Music Interviews

A TV Singing Star Champions The Pop Standard

After taking the top honor on America's Got Talent, Landau Eugene Murphy, Jr. has released his debut album, That's Life.
Courtesy of the artist

Landau Eugene Murphy, Jr. caught a lot of people off guard when he opened his mouth to sing at his televised audition for America's Got Talent. The dreadlocked former car-washer is 6'4" and in his late 30s, but when he belted the first notes of the pop standard "I've Got You Under My Skin" like a certain blue-eyed crooner, audiences and judges alike delightedly voiced their surprise.

Murphy's own social circle was harder to win over. He tells NPR's Guy Raz that at first, his family members laughed at the thought of him singing Sinatra.

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