Andrew Bird On World Cafe | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : World Cafe

Filed Under:

Andrew Bird On World Cafe

Whistling polymath Andrew Bird has become a perennial favorite of folk-pop aficionados and classical fans alike. As a trained violinist and a longtime touring musician, he has a way of expertly melding many genres and influences into his own unique brand of baroque pop. Showcasing his impressive skills with the violin, guitar, mandolin, glockenspiel and vocals, Bird is a picture of versatility.

He's been at it for more than a decade, when fresh out of college he released a jazz and folk inspired collection called Music Of Hair. Since then, he's steadily recorded several solo and band albums, live albums and EPs, and contributed to countless other artists' efforts. He's collaborated with the likes of Neko Case, Bonnie 'Prince' Billy, Ani DiFranco, My Morning Jacket and The Muppets.

Bird has just put out his sixth solo studio album, Break It Yourself. It's nothing if not heterogeneous — Bird employs a kind of tender balladry in this album, ominous yet pop-flavored with his assortment of whistles, horns and strings. His impressive lyrical bent is not lacking, and Break It Yourself, while darker than previous releases, is filled with contemplative poetry and lighthearted melodies. According to Bird, as interviewed on NPR, the contrast is intended: "I think that dark on dark is kind of boring, but the juxtaposition is what we call melancholy. That's the basis of most music, really."

This episode originally aired on March 15, 2012.

Copyright 2012 WXPN-FM. To see more, visit http://www.xpn.org/.

NPR

From Her Dad To Her 'Jamish' Roots, A Poet Pieces Her Story Together

Salena Godden grew up in 1970s England with a Jamaican mom and an absent English-Irish dad. In her memoir, Springfield Road, she looks back on her struggle to find her personal identity.
NPR

If You've Ever Looked For Faces In Your Potato Chips, Thank Myrtle Young

The Potato Chip Lady, aka Myrtle Young, died in August of this year. She was 90. Young became famous after showing her collection of unusually shaped chips to Tonight Show host Johnny Carson in 1987.
NPR

Tennessee's Medicaid Deal Dodges A Partisan Fight

An agreement between the Tennessee Hospital Association and Republican Gov. Bill Haslam expands Medicaid without tax dollars, an agreement that could be a blueprint for other states.
NPR

Die-In, Vortex, Selfie Stick: What's The Word Of 2014?

In January, members of the American Dialect Society will vote on the 2014 Word of the Year. Linguist Ben Zimmer runs through some contenders — including words both old and new.

Leave a Comment

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