NPR : World Cafe

Filed Under:

Anna Calvi On World Cafe

Described as shy and unassuming offstage, Anna Calvi demands attention when she has a guitar in her hands. She has the tendency to look her audience directly in the eyes when she performs. It's this tiptoeing of the line between seductive and unsettling that has helped her gain a dedicated following with the release of her 2011 Mercury Prize-nominated debut.

Calvi spent two and a half years recording her eponymous album, which draws influence from singer Edith Piaf and film directors Wong Kar-wai and David Lynch. There is certainly a haunting quality hanging over the waves of her voice and the way her guitar pierces the still air, especially on "Rider to the Sea/No More Words." It's not surprising that Calvi has garnered comparisons to artists as diverse as PJ Harvey and Ravel.

"I think it's important to leave some mystery, in order to really lose yourself in a song," she says. "I think you need to have that space to be taken."

Calvi describes the experience of recording on vintage equipment at Black Box Studios in France on today's World Cafe.

Copyright 2011 WXPN-FM. To see more, visit


From 'Unproud' To 'Hombre,' Election 2016 Is Testing Our Vocabulary

Merriam-Webster noticed the number of unique words coming out of this campaign, and has been using Twitter to report the most searchable words. Lexicographer Peter Sokolowski talks to Rachel Martin.

A History Of Election Cake And Why Bakers Want To #MakeAmericaCakeAgain

Bakers Susannah Gebhart and Maia Surdam are reviving election cake: a boozy, dense fruitcake that was a way for women to participate in the democratic process before they had the right to vote.

Republican And Trump Critic Ana Navarro Speaks On Election

Ana Navarro has become a standard bearer for Republican women repudiating Donald Trump. NPR's Rachel Martin speaks with the GOP strategist about her view of the election, which is only 16 days away.

The Next Generation Of Local, Low-Power FM Stations Expands In Urban Areas

The next wave of low power FM stations is coming on the air. Initially restricted to rural areas because of interference concerns, nearly 2,000 new stations have been approved — many in urban areas.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.