RSS Feed
WAMU 88.5

Rob Kapilow: Music Traditions And The Holidays (Rebroadcast)

"What Makes It Great" creator Rob Kapilow joins Kojo to explore how tradition shapes how composers write holiday music, and how we hear it.


Original 'Dreamgirl' Jennifer Holliday: 'I'm Not Going Nowhere'

Jennifer Holliday sprang to stardom in the 1980s for her Tony Award-winning performance in Dreamgirls and went on to a recording career after Broadway. But her life wasn't always glamorous: She suffered from depression and obesity, and once attempted suicide. She talks about the message she's trying to send with her forthcoming album, The Song is You.

Ella Fitzgerald's Early Years Collected In A Chick Webb Box Set

"This is it," Webb said of Fitzgerald. "I have a real singer now. That's what the public wants."

Venezuelan Hip-Hop Takes On Police Corruption

The song by Venezuelan rappers Apache y Canserbero tackles the rampant police corruption plaguing their country — but with a light touch.

Remembering Jim Hall, A Different Sort Of Guitar God

The guitarist said he didn't "really have all that much technique anyway," but it was clearly enough to influence half a century of jazz musicians. Peers and proteges like Sonny Rollins, Julian Lage and John Scofield reflect on one of the finest ever on his instrument.

Indie-Pop Albums That Make The Cut Are More Than Mere Collections

This week we're looking back at the year in music with a peek at NPR Music's 50 Favorite Albums of 2013. It's the annual list assembled by our in-house experts, including NPR music writer and editor Stephen Thompson. He tells Audie Cornish about his picks in the world of indie pop.

A Nostalgic, Yet Tainted Journey With The Beach Boys

In 2012, the band became another rock group that was celebrating its 50th anniversary. This year, it released Made in California, an eight-hour, six-disc retrospective of their career that, perhaps inadvertently, shows how this once-great force in American popular music faded from public view.

Why Would Nick Lowe Make A Christmas Album? Ask Nick Lowe

The esteemed UK songwriter says the idea of making a holiday record seemed laughable at first. He tells NPR's Arun Rath how he came around, and performs a few songs from the new Quality Street: A Seasonal Selection for All the Family.

Bad Religion Celebrates 'Christmas'

The punk band Bad Religion is usually critical of religion and American culture, but the group's newest album, Christmas Songs, is full of the classics. Host Rachel Martin speaks to founders Greg Graffin and Brett Gurewitz about the new album.

Layering Voices To Bring 'Good Cheer'

The a cappella group Groove For Thought has been electrifying classics and pop songs for 10 years. Tenor and baritone Kelly Kunz and soprano Amanda Taylor speak with host Scott Simon about their new holiday album, Songs of Good Cheer.