Journal

  • Friday, June 14, 2024
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  • Thursday, November 2, 2023

    Guitarist/composer Mary Halvorson's new album, Cloudward, is due January 19. The album features eight new compositions by Halvorson she performs with her sextet Amaryllis—the improvisatory band that performed on her acclaimed 2022 albums Amaryllis and Belladonna: Patricia Brennan (vibraphone), Nick Dunston (bass), Tomas Fujiwara (drums), Jacob Garchik (trombone), and Adam O’Farrill (trumpet). Laurie Anderson is featured on one track. "All the music on Cloudward was written in 2022 … when things started moving forward," Halvorson says. "Air travel had resumed, and we were once again cloudward … This band, for me, was quite simply working, both musically and personally, and the main thing I felt while writing the music was optimism."

    Journal Topics: Album Release, Artist News
  • Thursday, November 2, 2023

    It was thirty-five years ago today that Kronos Quartet gave the world premiere performance of Steve Reich’s Different Trains at Queen Elizabeth Hall in London. To mark the occasion, Reich’s publisher, Boosey & Hawkes, has published a new video, in which he discusses the process behind composing this piece for string quartet and tape. Reich used carefully chosen speech recordings to shape the musical material for the score, evoking his American childhood during World War II while also addressing the Holocaust. The 1989 first recording of Different Trains, performed by Kronos, won the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Composition.

    Journal Topics: Artist News, Video
  • Wednesday, November 1, 2023

    David Byrne is on NPR’s Fresh Air to talk with host Terry Gross about Talking Heads—whose 1984 concert film Stop Making Sense is in theaters now—and his own evolution, from early musical influences to overcoming setbacks, leading him to wonder what allows people to persevere. "Why is it that people don't give up? That's a real puzzle to me," he says. "I just thought, 'No, I love this. I'm going to keep doing it myself … because I enjoy it.’ So I kept going.” You can hear it here.

    Journal Topics: Artist News, Radio
  • Wednesday, November 1, 2023

    Cécile McLorin Salvant performs her song “Mélusine,” the title track to her new album, accompanied by Dušan Balarin, in the Unicorn Tapestries Room at The Met Cloisters in a new video out now as part of The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s performance series, MetLiveArts. You can watch it here. This is the first of three performances she filmed there of songs from the album; the remaining two will follow in the weeks ahead.

    Journal Topics: Artist News, Video
  • Monday, October 30, 2023

    Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway made their Austin City Limits debut on PBS stations across the US over the weekend. “This is something I've dreamed of for so long,” Tuttle says. “I've been watching Austin City Limits since I was a little kid.” She and the band performed four songs from their acclaimed new album, City of Gold and two from their 2021 Grammy-winning debut album, Crooked Tree. You can watch it here. 

    Journal Topics: Artist News, Television, Video
  • Monday, October 30, 2023

    Natalie Merchant was on BBC Radio 4's Start the Week to talk with presenter Kirsty Wark and fellow guests Jeffrey Boakye and Michel Faber about her new album, Keep Your Courage, and more. You can hear their conversation here. Merchant embarks on a European headlining tour beginning in Berlin tomorrow, followed by two nights at The London Palladium on Thursday and Friday, and including her first shows in Italy since 2002. 

    Journal Topics: Artist News, Podcast, Radio
  • Friday, October 27, 2023

    John Adams conducts the European premiere of his opera Antony & Cleopatra in Barcelona starring Julia Bullock and Gerald Finley. Cécile McLorin Salvant takes her antipodean tour to Melbourne. Michelle Branch is in New Orleans. Mary Halvorson is in Luxembourg and Geneva. Ben LaMar Gay is at Public Records in Brooklyn. The Magnetic Fields' Stephin Merritt pays tribute to Sinéad O’Connor at City Winery in NYC. Sarah Kirkland Snider's Mass for the Endangered is performed in Dallas. Chris Thile and The Knights perform his new piece in Worcester and Ithaca. Vagabon is in Philadelphia, Connecticut, and DC.

    Journal Topics: On Tour, Weekend Events
  • Wednesday, October 25, 2023

    Natalie Merchant has released the video for "Sister Tilly," from her new album, Keep Your Courage. The track is dedicated to Joan Didion and pays homage to the generation of women who influenced Merchant in the 1960s and ’70s when she was growing up. You can watch the video, directed by Matthew Shattuck and featuring archival footage from the era, here. Merchant begins a European tour next week. She hosts a new workshop at Fondazione Prada’s Accademia dei bambini in Milan in January and resumes her US West Coast tour in May.

    Journal Topics: Artist News, Video
  • Tuesday, October 24, 2023

    Kronos Quartet’s award-winning 1990 album Black Angels will be released on vinyl on February 16, 2024, to coincide with Kronos Quartet: Five Decades, a year-long celebration of the quartet’s 50th anniversary. First released in 1990, the album features George Crumb’s title piece, which inspired David Harrington to found the quartet in 1973, and works by Charles Ives, István Márta, Thomas Tallis, and Dmitri Shostakovich. The fourth side of the vinyl is an etching of an illustration created especially for this purpose by Matt Mahurin, whose work is featured on the original album cover. The Evening Standard included Black Angels among its “100 Definitive Classical Albums of the 20th Century.”

    Journal Topics: Album Release, Artist News
  • Monday, October 23, 2023

    Rhiannon Giddens recently gave an intimate performance at Racket in New York City for WFUV’s FUV Live. She spoke with host Alisa Ali about her new album, You’re the One, and more, and was joined by her band to perform several songs from it. You can now watch the performance of the album tracks “Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad,” “You Louisiana Man,” and “Yet to Be” below and listen to the complete session at wfuv.org.

    Journal Topics: Artist News, Radio, Video
  • Friday, October 20, 2023

    Vagabon kicks off a North American tour in Chicago, Detroit, and Toronto. Ambrose Akinmusire and his Owl Song Trio—Bill Frisell, Herlin Riley—are in Carmel, IN. Sam Amidon is in Stroud, England. Michelle Branch is in Las Vegas. Richard Goode performs in Perth, Scotland. Mary Halvorson is in North Macedonia and in Germany, where Tigran Hamasyan tours as well. Hurray for the Riff Raff performs in Tulsa for the Bob Dylan Center. Gabriel Kahane and Attacca Quartet are at UCLA. Kronos Quartet performs at the Barbican in London. Mandy Patinkin is in New Brunswick, NJ. Sarah Kirkland Snider's Mass for the Endangered is performed in Oslo. Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway tour Colorado. Yasmin Williams is in Hot Springs, VA.

    Journal Topics: On Tour, Weekend Events
  • Thursday, October 19, 2023

    Rhiannon Giddens was on The Daily Show to talk with guest host Michael Kosta about her career, winning the Pulitzer Prize in Music, and her song "Another Wasted Life," from her new album, You're the One, which she also performed on the show. The song aims to raise awareness for the stories and voices of those who have experienced the injustices of the criminal legal system. She partnered with the Pennsylvania Innocence Project on a fundraising initiative and a music video for the song featuring 22 wrongfully convicted people, clients of the organization, who collectively spent more than 500 years in prison for crimes they did not commit.

    Journal Topics: Artist News, Television, Video