Michael Katzif

In addition to being a musician and music writer, Michael Katzif is a producer and keeper of all things podcast at NPR. He came to NPR as the intern for All Songs Considered, where he obsessively picked over the onslaught of music and wrote about unsigned artists for the site's daily Open Mic (now Second Stage) feature. He currently produces a handful of podcasts and music content for NPR Music and is a frequent contributor to NPR's Song of the Day and NPR's jazz blog, A Blog Supreme.

When not at NPR, Katzif stays distracted with various creative endeavors and musical exploits, documented on his Web site, Hello Come In. He recently finished a long-distance collaboration with friends on a year-long project that produced an EP of original music every month.

When news surfaced last year that Thurston Moore had hired Beck to produce his new album, it was easy to imagine their collaboration taking one of two paths: They could go loud, or they could go quiet. Considering the body of work the two iconoclastic musicians have amassed over the years, either would have made sense.

Lawrence, Kan., doesn't immediately spring to mind when America's great music scenes are being rattled off. It can be easy to overlook the middle of the country when so many fans and tastemakers are situated on one coast or the other, and that makes it harder for landlocked bands to establish the biggest possible national following. Still, year after year, the college town consistently serves as an incubator for talent deserving wider recognition.

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