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Playlist: Special Music Pieces

Compiled By: Raymond Pang

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Frank Sinatra: 'The Voice'

From NPR Music | Part of the Jazz Profiles series | 57:59

Frank Sinatra's vocal instrument left a permanent mark on 20th Century America.

Sinatra75_small Frank Sinatra left a permanent mark on 20th Century America in many forms of popular entertainment. As a vocalist, his versions of the country's popular songs set the definitive standard for singers and instrumentalists alike.

The Afterlife of Otis Redding

From Open Source | Part of the Open Source with Christopher Lydon series | 58:59

Otis Redding’s five magnificent years in showbiz transformed the sound of soul music.

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Otis Redding’s five magnificent years in showbiz transformed the sound of soul music. His grainy, growling, and “squawking” voice kept the music rooted in the older traditions of the black church and black life in America. Yet his secularized sound—tempered with the sweetness of Sam Cooke, the flamboyant flair of Little Richard, and the showmanship of James Brown—also ushered in a new era of African American pop in the ’60s.

With a little help from his virtuosic, multiracial band, Redding’s appeal also managed to cross over to white audiences on stage. His show-stealing set at the Monterey Pop Festival led Grateful Dead guitarist Bob Weir to claim, after Redding’s performance, that he had “seen God on stage.” Chris’s brother Michael Lydon, a music journalist at the time, was also there covering the event. He described Otis’s appearance as “ecstasy, madness, loss, total screaming, fantastic.”

 

Six months later, that Monterey god died in a plane crash. “The crown prince of soul,” the Rolling Stone headline declared, “is dead.”

50 years after this tragic loss, we’re looking back at the living legacy of Otis Redding’s soul.

Jonathan Gould, author of the new biography, Otis Redding: An Unfinished Lifegives us the origin story—tracing Redding’s career from his humble gospel roots in Macon, Georgia to his magisterial turn onstage in Monterey, California. Redding’s death, for Gould, also punctuates the end of one era of soul music.

James Brown (left) backstage with Otis Redding (right)

Larry Watson, who sings and teaches the soul tradition at Berklee College of Music in Boston, hears a slightly different story. For him, Redding represents an ideal model of an unassimilated African voice. As he wrote to us in an email earlier this week:

Otis Redding is a special breed and one of our foremost classical voices. He represents royalty in African-centered, unapologetic musical Blackness without ever uttering one political slogan. His very presence and sound represent our collective ancestral memory. It is the rumblings of God’s unhappiness with the way we continue to treat one another. His sound is Blind Tom, Harriet Tubman, and Nat Turner. He is also the sound of that vulnerable Black Mother and the Motherless Child. His sound captures what Dubois and Malcolm and King eloquently wrote about. He was one of our main vessels allowing us to mourn and rejoice that we would see another day of life.
For Larry, you can hear everything you need to know about Otis’s technique in the difference between Sam Cooke’s original version of “A Change is Gonna Come” and Redding’s raw re-interpretation.

Janice Pendarvis, one of the legendary back-up singers featured in the documentary, Twenty Feet from Stardom, takes great delight in performing Redding’s music. She once sang “Dock of the Bay” in a rehearsal for the reggae legend Max Romeo. Still today, she hears Otis’s posthumous hit as a “perfect record,” but in order to really understand the nuances in Redding’s performance style, she says, listen to  “Try a Little Tenderness.”

 

Emily Lordi is a literary scholar of the soul tradition at UMass Amherst. She wrote a book on Redding’s iconic female contemporaries—from Mahalia to Aretha—and another on one of Otis’s successors, Donny Hathaway. As a scrupulous close reader of this generation of soul singers, she shows us how those little “Tenderness” tricks were later transformed–and in some sense distorted–by Kanye West and Jay-Z:

 

Ed Pavlic is a poet with a keen ear for the long history of black music in America—much of which he distilled in a book we love, Who Can Afford to Improvise? on the musical inheritance behind James Baldwin’s prose. He take us through the evolution of the Otis style and spirit that came roaring out of the church and is still moving in the world—particularly through younger singers like SZA and Ravyn Lenae. The key for Ed Pavlic is not the sound of any performer, but the sound of a community. 

As an added bonus, Pavlic also put together a special “continuous soul” playlist for us. The set of songs traces Pavlic’s history of an evolving tradition. Listen to it here:

 

On The Margins of Music - Alan Lomax & Anthony Burgess

From Open Source | 58:59

First, we join biographer John Szwed in thanking the eccentric musical anthropologist Alan Lomax for his rare recordings of early twentieth century American life. Lomax spent his long life traveling the world with his ear to the ground and capturing the people's music - folk and roots, work songs, praise songs, and prison songs - that turned out to be the foundation of everything else.

Then, conductor and composer Paul Phillips is plunging us into the synesthetic universe of the odd genius who wrote "A Clockwork Orange." Anthony Burgess wished all his life that the world knew him as a composer who wrote novels, instead of a novelist who wrote songs and symphonies on the side.

Aburgess_small First, our guest John Szwed has written a classic American biography of Alan Lomax, aptly subtitled "The Man Who Recorded the World." Alan Lomax's career began when he was 15, when he and his father set off with early Edison recording equiptment on what they called a "hobo-ing" trip through the South at the height of the Great Depression. Part talent scout, part anthropologist, Alam Lomax became obsessed with rooting global cultures onto musical elements, performance styles, and the way that people stand and move together in space.

Then, conductor Paul Philips has been leading the Brown Unversity orchestra this winter in the symphonic music of Anthony Burgess. Phillips has just published "A Clockwork Counterpoint," exploring the interplay between literary and musical structures in Burgess's impressive cannon. Burgess's masterpiece "A Clockwork Orange," he tells us, was written in sonata form. Burgess's orchestral style was post-modern before post-modernism had a name -- a blend of styles and rhytms, instruments and vocals, ballet and raunchy pub songs -- and somehow, it all fits together.

Louis Armstrong: 'The Trumpeter'

From NPR Music | Part of the Jazz Profiles series | 54:00

Before Louis Armstrong ever sang a duet with Ella Fitzgerald or Bing Crosby, there was just a lanky young man with a bright, beautiful horn. That young man transformed the trumpet into a solo instrument capable of astonishing range and lyrical beauty.

3armstrong250_small Before Louis Armstrong ever sang a duet with Ella Fitzgerald or Bing Crosby, before "Hello Dolly" or "It's A Wonderful World," there was just a lanky young man with a bright, beautiful horn. That young man transformed the trumpet into a solo instrument capable of astonishing range and lyrical beauty.

John Coltrane: Saxophone Icon, Part 1

From NPR Music | Part of the Jazz Profiles series | 54:00

John Coltrane's never-ending quest for musical improvement and self-awareness distinguished his playing and compositions in the '60s.

1coltrane250_small John Coltrane's never-ending quest for musical improvement and self-awareness distinguished his playing and compositions in the '60s. It was driven by an increasing spirituality, most potently unveiled in his 1964 recording A Love Supreme. Coltrane later created music of great turbulence and ecstasy, and he remains a powerful inspiration to artists of all disciplines.

The Beatles One-Hour Radio Special: "Help! Is On The Way..." Narrated by Michael Palin

From Nicole Haldeman | 48:21

Michael Palin presents a radio special about the Beatles? second movie Help!, which was first released in 1965.

Helpdvdcoverart_small Michael Palin presents a radio special about the Beatles? second movie Help!, which was first released in 1965. The film will be re-issued on DVD in November 2007 in a version that has fully restored the print to its original visual quality and with a soundtrack that has been upgraded with a surround sound mix. In this special programme, we hear comments from the Beatles recorded in 1965 plus director Richard Lester and actors Eleanor Bron and Victor Spinetti recall working with them. There are also amusing stories about the unusual circumstances of filming in the Bahamas and Austria from the group?s then road manager and later head of Apple, Neil Aspinall and the movie?s Costume Designer Julie Harris. The plot of the film revolves around members of an Eastern cult who chase after the bulbous red ring worn by Ringo, because without it they cannot make a human sacrifice to the goddess Kaili. With a nod to the popularity of the James Bond movies, a couple of eccentric scientists are also trying to steal it. As Michael Palin points out, the surreal dialogue and visual gags in the film were the kind of things that the Monty Python team later played with. All seven songs featured in the movie are heard in the radio show: ?Help!?, ?You?re Going To Lose That Girl?, ?You?ve Got To Hide Your Love Away?, ?Another Girl?, ?I Need You?, ?The Night Before? and ?Ticket To Ride?. Most songs are mimed performances in the film - with the group playing their instruments - but for ?Ticket To Ride?, the Beatles are shown fooling about on snow-covered mountains as they skied, curled and fell over! That startling sequence, in particular, has led to Richard Lester?s work with the Beatles being viewed as an inspiration for the style of music videos that caught the eye during the early days of MTV in the 1980s. Director Steve Barron, who first made his name with a succession of videos for artists such as Culture Club, The Human League and A-Ha confirms that influence in this programme. As we hear in the radio show, for all those involved in making Help! it was a remarkable experience; with the film?s new lease of life on DVD, their work with the Beatles now seems guaranteed to entertain generation after generation. There will be a commercial hour version, and a break-free hour for online or other use. Preferred broadcast window is weekend before release through weekend after release, November 2nd - 11th. If you plan to broadcast this special, or would like to receive the radio special on CD, please email to Nicole.Haldeman@emicap.com with air date and time. Product for on-air giveaways is also available.

The Emergence of Linda Ronstadt

From Paul Ingles | 01:57:59

The remarkable and varied performing career of Linda Ronstadt is explored by a panel of her friends, music writers, musicians and fans. Plus archival interviews with Linda. Paul Ingles hosts.

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The remarkable and varied performing career of Linda Ronstadt is explored by a panel of her friends, music writers, musicians and fans. 

Features hits and deep album cuts (44 songs included in the two-hour version) from all her many genre explorations and  commentary from Peter Asher, JD Souther, Maria Muldaur, John Boylan, and others plus Linda herself.  

Hosted by Paul Ingles, who brought you "The Emergence..." episodes on Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Bonnie Raitt, Paul Simon, Otis Redding and more.  Also album specials on each major release by The Beatles.  

Playlist (All Linda Ronstadt Albums Unless Otherwise Noted)

One Hour Version

Colorado - (from) Don't Cry Now (excerpt)
Por Un Amor - Canciones de mi Padre (excerpt)
Someone To Watch Over Me - What's New (excerpt)
Lover's Return - Complete Trio Collection (excerpt)
Los Laureles - Canciones di mi Padre (excerpt)
Different Drum – Evergreen, Vol. 2 (Stone Poneys) (excerpt)
Louise – Silk Purse (excerpt)
Long, Long Time – Silk Purse
Kate – The Best of Linda Ronstadt – The Capitol Years (excerpt)
I Still Miss Someone – Linda Ronstadt (excerpt)
Rock Me On The Water – Linda Ronstadt (excerpt)
Don't Cry Now – Don’t Cry Now (excerpt)
Heart Like A Wheel – Heart Like A Wheel (excerpt)
You’re No Good – Heart Like A Wheel (excerpt)
When Will I Be Loved – Heart Like A Wheel (excerpt)
Faithless Love – Heart Like A Wheel (excerpt)
Heatwave – Prisoner In Disguise (excerpt)
Prisoner In Disguise – Prisoner In Disguise
Many Rivers To Cross – Prisoner In Disguise (excerpt)
Someone To Lay Down Beside Me – Hasten Down The Wind
Hasten Down The Wind – Hasten Down The Wind
That'll Be The Day – Hasten Down The Wind (excerpt)
Tumbling Dice – Simple Dreams (excerpt)
Blue Bayou – Simple Dreams (excerpt)
Girls Talk – Mad Love (excerpt)
Justine – Mad Love(excerpt)
Guess I’ll Hang My Tears Out To Dry – What’s New? (excerpt)
Frenesi – Frenesi (excerpt)
Ruler of My Heart – We Ran (excerpt)
Adios – Cry Like A Rainstorm, Howl Like the Wind (excerpt)


Two Hour Version

Colorado - (from) Don't Cry Now
Por Un Amor - Canciones de mi Padre (excerpt)
Rescue Me - Linda Ronstadt (excerpt)
If He's Ever Near - Hasten Down The Wind (excerpt)
I Can't Let Go - Get Closer (excerpt)
How Do I Make You - Mad Love (excerpt)
Someone To Watch Over Me - What's New (excerpt)
Los Laureles - Canciones di mi Padre (excerpt)
Lover's Return - Complete Trio Collection (excerpt)
Down So Low - Hasten Down The Wind
That'll Be The Day – Hasten Down The Wind (excerpt)
Lovesick Blues - Silk Purse (excerpt)
Different Drum – Evergreen, Vol. 2 (Stone Poneys)
Louise – Silk Purse (excerpt)
Long, Long Time – Silk Purse
Kate – The Best of Linda Ronstadt – The Capitol Years (excerpt)
I Still Miss Someone – Linda Ronstadt (excerpt)
Rock Me On The Water – Linda Ronstadt
Don't Cry Now - Don't Cry Now
Desperado – Don’t Cry Now (excerpt)
I Believe in You – Don’t Cry Now (excerpt)
You’re No Good – Heart Like A Wheel
Faithless Love – Heart Like A Wheel
When Will I Be Loved – Heart Like A Wheel
Heart Like A Wheel – Heart Like A Wheel
Heatwave – Prisoner In Disguise (excerpt)
Prisoner In Disguise – Prisoner In Disguise
Many Rivers To Cross – Prisoner In Disguise
The Sweetest Gift – Prisoner In Disguise (excerpt)
Someone To Lay Down Beside Me – Hasten Down The Wind
Hasten Down The Wind – Hasten Down The Wind
Try Me Again – Hasten Down The Wind (excerpt)
Tumbling Dice – Simple Dreams (excerpt)
Blue Bayou – Simple Dreams
World I Never Made – unreleased
Cost of Love – Mad Love (excerpt)
Girls Talk – Mad Love (excerpt)
Justine – Mad Love(excerpt)
Guess I’ll Hang My Tears Out To Dry – What’s New? (excerpt)
Skylark – Lush Life (excerpt)
Frenesi – Frenesi (excerpt)
Ruler of My Heart – We Ran (excerpt)
Adios – Cry Like A Rainstorm, Howl Like the Wind (excerpt)

Hour 30: Jazz on Central Avenue – Bebop in Los Angeles

From WTJU | Part of the Jazz at 100 series | 58:59

Most of the pioneering bebop musicians we have featured in the past several programs were centered in New York – Bird, Dizzy, Monk, Bud Powell, Coleman Hawkins, Fats Navarro, JJ Johnson, Max Roach. While New York may have dominated the modern music scene, it wasn’t the only scene. The wartime economy in southern California brought an influx of African-American workers, not dissimilar to Chicago in the 1920s, and with them musicians, nightclubs and dance halls.

Jazz_at_100_poster_copy_small Most of the pioneering bebop musicians we have featured in the past several programs were centered in New York – Bird, Dizzy, Monk, Bud Powell, Coleman Hawkins, Fats Navarro, JJ Johnson, Max Roach. While New York may have dominated the modern music scene, it wasn’t the only scene. The wartime economy in southern California brought an influx of African-American workers, not dissimilar to Chicago in the 1920s, and with them musicians, nightclubs and dance halls.