by WNYC Studios · · · · 16 subscribers

WNYC, New York Public Radio, brings you Soundcheck, the arts and culture program hosted by John Schaefer, who engages guests and listeners in lively, inquisitive conversations with established and rising figures in New York City's creative arts scene. Guests come from all disciplines, including pop, indie rock, jazz, urban, world and classical music, technology, cultural affairs, TV and film. Recent episodes have included features on Michael Jackson,Crosby Stills & Nash, the Assad Brothers, Rackett, The Replacements, and James Brown.

The British guitarist and singer, Joan Armatrading, has had a long and award- winning relationship with the British folk scene, has had a strong jazz influence in a lot of her early hits, topped the American charts with a new wave song in 1980, and just a few years ago became the first British woman to debut at #1 on the Billboard Blues Chart. Joan Armatrading has just released her 21st album, called Not Too Far Away , and she’s here in the studio to play some of it for us. Watch here :


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Meet the Ruen Brothers, Rupert and Henry, who are actually brothers from the Northern England town of Scunthorpe. Their sound conjures Roy Orbison, Johnny Cash, and music on the radio from a bygone era. They'll play some of this vintage pop with classic
Meet the impressive R&B songstress Deva Mahal, who claims her parents as inspiration: blues legend Taj Mahal and dancer/artist/teacher Inshirah Mahal. Her latest record, Run Deep is collection of modern and seductive, rich and rocking tunes that make
This Is The Kit is English singer and songwriter Kate Stables (lately based in Paris or Bristol) and whoever joins her. Under that nom de plume, she's been releasing since the 00's. Her latest album, called Moonshine Freeze, has been nominated for the pr
Hear unpredictable and graceful melodic lines traded by sax and strings, as tenor sax superstar Joshua Redman and string quartet Brooklyn Rider, along with all-star rhythm section of Scott Colley (bass) and Satoshi Takeishi (percussion) take over the stu
Resisting gender-specific compliments in print since 2014 (and probably before), producer, songwriter, badass, and musician Neko Case is about to unleash her latest record, Hell-On, into the world. She’s written songs that traverse a lot of ground: folk
Hear unraveling minimalist electronica with restrained ambient feels from Rival Consoles, aka London-based producer Ryan Lee West, whose music combines warm and human analogue-heavy synthesizers, along with acoustic and electric instruments. On his lates
Part book club, part composer collective, Oracle Hysterical’s works occupy the fluid space between classically-inclined song-cycle and art-rock concept album. The group’s songs take on great literary with text sources from Grimms’ Fairy Tales to Greek tr
Pianist, composer, MacArthur Fellow, and bandleader Vijay Iyer has done imaginative re-workings of pop songs, explored the connections between jazz and the music of India, and veered into the classical realm as well, with electronics. His most recent alb
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Bombino, aka guitarist and songwriter Omara Moctar, comes from the nomadic Tuareg people of North Africa. On his latest record, Deran, recorded close to his native Niger in the southern Sahara, he extends best wishes for peace and celebrates his desert h
The California Honeydrops play stripped-down rootsy music that might sound like country-blues, Southern soul, New Orleans second-line, and R&B - all at once old school and really old-school. Their origin story is inspirational – Polish-born Lech Wier
Eleanor Friedberger, best known as one half of the indie rock duo The Fiery Furnaces, has recently shifted her musical landscape, swapping out live instruments in favor of drum programming and synths for a sound that she can create mostly on her own. (Pa
The latest music from American pop band Speedy Ortiz, ‘Twerp Verse,’ speaks smartly to political and social situations of the present from a feminist perspective of truth-telling and is designed, on purpose, to make us uncomfortable lyrically and musical
Okkervil River excels at wistful, melancholy, intimate songs, yet there’s possibly an undercurrent of happiness to these latest creations on the forthcoming record, In The Rainbow Rain. Somehow singer/songwriter Will Sheff both reflects on this new world
Some time ago, Malian singer, songwriter, guitarist and actress Fatoumata Diawara did a wonderful and daring thing – inspired by her friend Rokia Traore, she bought an acoustic guitar, and taught herself to play it. Since then, Fatoumata has put out her
Louisiana-based Lost Bayou Ramblers are a swinging punkass party band who mix Cajun melodies on fiddle, accordion, guitars, and some electric sounds. They just won a regional roots Grammy for their record, Kalenda, but they’ve also done an original score
As bands go, Anna & Elizabeth have quite the origin story. Anna & Elizabeth began thanks to a broke down car and a shared desire to explore the traditions of Appalachian roots music. The immersive, intimate combination of Elizabeth LaPrelle’s dee
In the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, during the 1960’s and ‘70s, the sounds of American jazz and James Brown-style funk rocketed through the clubs there, combining with Ethiopia’s own exotic scales to produce the golden age of Ethiopian pop. The New Yo
The folk-rock outfit The Lone Bellow crafts passionate, acoustic-based Americana that hints at elements of blues, country, and roots music. They’ve recently moved from Brooklyn to Nashville, (let that fact be read into, musically) and the band in their t