NPR: Milo Miles http://weku.fm en Golem Ain't Your Grandparents' Klezmer http://weku.fm/post/golem-aint-your-grandparents-klezmer The New York City band Golem describe their music as punk-klezmer. Music critic Milo Miles says that on the group's new album, <em>Tanz</em>, they mange to find new ways to balance urban irreverence with folk tradition. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.<img src="http://www.google-analytics.com/__utm.gif?utmac=UA-5828686-4&utmdt=Golem+Ain%27t+Your+Grandparents%27+Klezmer+&utme=8(APIKey)9(MDA4MzMwMDM0MDEzMTg4NzQ3NzAwZDdjZg004)"/></div><p>Transcript <p>DAVE DAVIES, HOST: <p>This is FRESH AIR. Tue, 03 Jun 2014 19:00:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 60519 at http://weku.fm Fight Sound With Sound: Grateful Dead's Arena Combat http://weku.fm/post/fight-sound-sound-grateful-deads-arena-combat The same week that <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15050998/neil-young">Neil Young</a> introduced his <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/allsongs/2014/03/12/289435279/hear-neil-young-explain-his-pono-music-player-at-sxsw">Pono music player</a> designed to spark a huge boost in audio fidelity, I listened for the first time to a recording of a <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15440218/grateful-dead">Grateful Dead</a> concert I attended almost 40 years ago. And I realized that passions about good-sounding music go through cycles. Today, the lo-fi medium is MP3s through earbuds. Mon, 31 Mar 2014 19:47:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 57566 at http://weku.fm Fight Sound With Sound: Grateful Dead's Arena Combat Before He Joined Congress, A South African Janitor's Disco Past http://weku.fm/post/he-joined-congress-south-african-janitors-disco-past The appearance of Penny Penny's <em>Shaka Bundu</em> in the American market is welcome not only in itself, but also as a sign of a larger trend. Five or six years ago, it was clear the music business was going into long-term sales decline, and I was certain that a prime victim of that would be African pop. The established imports of the '80s and '90s would be available as MP3 downloads, but surely new discoveries and reissues would slow to a trickle, if not cease altogether. I'm grateful that that has simply not happened. Thu, 06 Feb 2014 21:15:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 55286 at http://weku.fm Before He Joined Congress, A South African Janitor's Disco Past Will The Real Llewyn Davis Please Stand Up? http://weku.fm/post/will-real-llewyn-davis-please-stand <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=56qo9sinSdc</p> Mon, 25 Nov 2013 18:04:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 52344 at http://weku.fm Will The Real Llewyn Davis Please Stand Up? Sylvester: 'Mighty Real' Disco Star Deserves A Modern Spotlight http://weku.fm/post/sylvester-mighty-real-disco-star-deserves-modern-spotlight <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ue2UXnxp8Rs</p> Tue, 16 Jul 2013 18:17:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 47206 at http://weku.fm Sylvester: 'Mighty Real' Disco Star Deserves A Modern Spotlight Festival Au Desert: Music Of Peace Not Silenced By War http://weku.fm/post/festival-au-desert-music-peace-not-silenced-war Long ago, one of my college history professors hammered home a durable truth: "If you love art," she said, "you should hate war." Because some art is always among war's victims.<p>A case in point is a music celebration called Festival au Desert — held near Timbuktu, Mali, since 2001 — which I will Anglicize as Festival in the Desert. In January 2012, right after the last festival ended, a nationalist uprising began in the north of Mali, which was soon taken over by hardline Islamic fundamentalists. Thu, 30 May 2013 14:48:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 45001 at http://weku.fm Festival Au Desert: Music Of Peace Not Silenced By War Yo La Tengo: Decades In And Far From Fading http://weku.fm/post/yo-la-tengo-decades-and-far-fading <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15223290/yo-la-tengo">Yo La Tengo</a> wouldn't seem to be very rock 'n' roll, given that it's a very stable and long-lasting operation. Since 1991, the lineup has consisted of a married couple — drummer Georgia Hubley and guitarist Ira Kaplan, along with bassist James McNew — and all three play additional instruments as needed. Yo La Tengo has been with the same label, Matador, since 1993. Mon, 04 Feb 2013 17:02:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 39331 at http://weku.fm Yo La Tengo: Decades In And Far From Fading Tunes To 'Work Hard, Play Hard, Pray Hard' To http://weku.fm/post/tunes-work-hard-play-hard-pray-hard The first thing to note about the collection of old-timey music <em>Work Hard, Play Hard, Pray Hard</em> is that it resulted from a record-discovery event that happens less and less often, and soon will likely never happen again. The music was recorded between 1923 and 1936. Most of the sides on the set are taken from 78s collected by the late Don Wahle of Louisville, Ky., and rescued from Dumpster destruction in 2010 by compiler Nathan Salsburg. Nineteen of the songs have never been reissued. Piles of moldy vinyl left behind by the deceased were once commonplace. No longer. Wed, 19 Dec 2012 18:57:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 37336 at http://weku.fm Tunes To 'Work Hard, Play Hard, Pray Hard' To Samuel Yirga Ushers In A Golden Age Of Ethiopian Music http://weku.fm/post/samuel-yirga-ushers-golden-age-ethiopian-music <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hyI7IWtb-NI</p> Thu, 08 Nov 2012 17:34:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 35559 at http://weku.fm Samuel Yirga Ushers In A Golden Age Of Ethiopian Music Analog Players Society: A Party Cooked Up In A Studio http://weku.fm/post/analog-players-society-party-cooked-studio Albums made by collections of professional studio players once had a bad reputation with the traditional rock audience. Such works were supposedly arid and chilly — more like the results of a board meeting than the recorded adventure of an organic group of fabulous friends. Some music fans may still feel that way, but they are few. Tue, 25 Sep 2012 17:06:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 33429 at http://weku.fm Analog Players Society: A Party Cooked Up In A Studio Boban i Marko Markovic: Irresistible Party Music http://weku.fm/post/boban-i-marko-markovic-irresistible-party-music A dozen years ago, if someone told me that one of the liveliest, most inventive party albums of the year would come from a band originally associated with wedding celebrations and beer festivals, I would have been all, "Yeah, sure, you bet." If it was further explained that the band's roots were much closer to polka than rock, funk or hip-hop, I would have responded, "Don't push it." But nowadays, I'm familiar with the Boban i Marko Markovic Orkestar, whose retrospective <em>Golden Horns</em> will lighten the heart and lift the feet as surely as anything you'll hear in 2012. Tue, 31 Jul 2012 17:14:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 30448 at http://weku.fm Boban i Marko Markovic: Irresistible Party Music Paying Tribute To San Francisco DJ Cheb I Sabbah http://weku.fm/post/paying-tribute-san-francisco-dj-cheb-i-sabbah Cheb i Sabbah's life traces an almost fairy-tale perfect path through the evolution of what's now called world music. Born in Algeria in 1947, he absorbed the Judeo-Arabic Andalusian music of his local culture before he joined the '60s rebellion and became a 17-year-old DJ playing soul 45s in Paris. By the end of the decade, he'd moved to New York and become friends with trumpeter Don Cherry, famous for his association with Ornette Coleman and a pioneer in the concept of multicultural music. Thu, 07 Jun 2012 16:38:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 27701 at http://weku.fm Paying Tribute To San Francisco DJ Cheb I Sabbah A Sure-Footed Collection Of 'African Blues' http://weku.fm/post/sure-footed-collection-african-blues I have to hand it to the Putumayo label. Since it started as a soundtrack-provider to a clothing store in the early '90s, the operation has placed racks of CDs with friendly-primitivist art by Nicola Heindl into Starbucks and Whole Foods everywhere. Putumayo is as responsible as anything for making music buyers ask "Where's the world music section?" in shops or online. Mon, 30 Apr 2012 16:45:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 25703 at http://weku.fm A Sure-Footed Collection Of 'African Blues' From Dominican Roots, Bachata Is Here To Stay http://weku.fm/post/dominican-roots-bachata-here-stay <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WBCq0cSxvEE</p> Thu, 19 Apr 2012 15:04:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 25144 at http://weku.fm From Dominican Roots, Bachata Is Here To Stay Hugh Masekela: Wedding Songs That Don't Sound Blue http://weku.fm/post/hugh-masekela-wedding-songs-dont-sound-blue In 1968, Hugh Masekela was not quite 30 years old and though he was in exile from his homeland of South Africa, he seemed ready to become at home on the American jazz and pop markets. That summer, he had scored a number one single, "Grazing in the Grass." A year earlier, he'd been one of the few international performers at the 1967 Monterrey International Pop Festival and had appeared in its D.A. Pennebaker documentary. Yet strangely enough, over the next 45 years Masekela never quite found his sweet spot. Thu, 01 Mar 2012 13:22:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 23466 at http://weku.fm Hugh Masekela: Wedding Songs That Don't Sound Blue El Rego: A Singer From Benin With Soul And Funk http://weku.fm/post/el-rego-singer-benin-soul-and-funk It may seem counter-intuitive, but the history of world music proves that unfamiliar instruments and rhythms cross borders much more readily than vocal styles. There's no question that, starting in the late '60s, soul and then funk became very popular in sub-Saharan Africa. Decades of reissues show that a lot of players found their way into electric guitar, and that enriching the big beat of the West was a cinch for African percussionists.<p>Regarding singers, only South Africa had a gospel tradition that was ready for soul from the get-go. Wed, 21 Dec 2011 17:09:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 18402 at http://weku.fm El Rego: A Singer From Benin With Soul And Funk Iron Butterfly Stretches Its Wings On 'Fillmore East' http://weku.fm/post/iron-butterfly-stretches-its-wings-fillmore-east Before <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15396553/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a>, there was Iron Butterfly — these days, a very misremembered band from Los Angeles. Maybe it was the movie industry all around, but '60s garage-rock in L.A. had an expansive, almost cinematic streak. Iron Butterfly was not the most inventive band on that scene, but it became the most famous because of a single, durable, out-of-nowhere hit, "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida." The song was 17 minutes long, and the proper thing to do on underground radio stations was the play the whole thing. Fri, 25 Nov 2011 16:00:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 16886 at http://weku.fm Iron Butterfly Stretches Its Wings On 'Fillmore East' Iggy Pop: A Punk Rocker Devoted To Imperfection http://weku.fm/post/iggy-pop-punk-rocker-devoted-imperfection I'm not presenting much of a consumer guide here. If you even think you would enjoy four CDs of unreleased <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15374775/iggy-pop">Iggy Pop</a> concert bootlegs — with dropouts, feedback and lots of flubbed notes — you don't need me to tell you about it.<p>This is more of a reflection on surprising endurance. Back in the late '70s, Iggy, like <a href="http://www.npr.org/2010/10/25/130722581/the-rolling-stones-keith-richards-looks-back-at-life" target="_blank">Keith Richards</a>, was supposed to already have a coffin with his name on it. Mon, 09 May 2011 20:13:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 3548 at http://weku.fm Iggy Pop: A Punk Rocker Devoted To Imperfection Bombino: High-Energy Sounds From 'Agadez,' Niger http://weku.fm/post/bombino-high-energy-sounds-agadez-niger The Tuareg people have lived in the Sahara desert of Western Africa for thousands of years. The harsh desert environment gets woven into those who can adapt to it. So the Tuareg have long been protective of their independent, nomadic-herder culture and society. But not unlike the European Roma, Tuaregs have a tense — occasionally violent — relationship with central governments. Tue, 26 Apr 2011 16:29:00 +0000 NPR: Milo Miles 2274 at http://weku.fm Bombino: High-Energy Sounds From 'Agadez,' Niger