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Friday, December 15, 2017

Listen to Sylvan Esso's Sweet Acoustic Cover of Mister Rogers' "There Are Many Ways to Say I Love You"

Posted By on Fri, Dec 15, 2017 at 10:01 AM

The world feels nuts on a daily basis, for a multitude of reasons, and it can feel hard to find moments of joy, peace, and respite. But this morning, we've got a good one for you. Let Sylvan Esso soothe you with this quiet, acoustic rendition of "There Are Many Ways to Say I Love You," a song written by Fred Rogers for Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood The song is for Make Believe Neighborhood, a project commemorating Fred Rogers' marvelous life and work, which premieres in Minneapolis in February. It's a short, sweet little number, and you can listen to it...

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Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Watch Hiss Golden Messenger Take Over Late Night with Seth Meyers

Posted By on Wed, Dec 6, 2017 at 12:37 PM

If you're one of the early-to-bed types, you probably missed Durham's Hiss Golden Messenger performing "Domino (Time Will Tell)" on Late Night with Seth Meyers last night. But fear not, we have YouTube! M.C. Taylor's ten-piece band includes some other esteemed local characters: Phil Cook, James Wallace, Skylar Gudasz, Tamisha Waden, and Darren Jessee are all part of the crew (you might have to look closely, though, as the clip is lit like it was shot in a broom closet). Even so, it's a solid performance from an immensely talented bunch of musicians. The band last appeared on late-night TV...

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Moogfest Announces Chelsea Manning, Jenny Hval, Jamila Woods, SOPHIE, and More for 2018

Posted By on Wed, Dec 6, 2017 at 12:01 PM

Moogfest isn't until mid-May, but today, it announced its first wave of programming—all of which is female, trans, and nonbinary performers and speakers. One of the biggest names is Chelsea Manning, the former soldier who was imprisoned for seven years for leaking information about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to Wikileaks. She was released in May of this year, and should have some fascinating insight on tech and social justice to add to next year's festival. Other names on the bill include Kaitlin Aurelia Smith, Jamila Woods, Jenny Hval, Nadia Sirota, Kristin Kontrol, Fatima Al Qadiri, SOPHIE, among a...

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Friday, December 1, 2017

Kamasi Washington, Contemporary Jazz Titan, Discusses Harmony and Human Connections

Posted By on Fri, Dec 1, 2017 at 11:34 AM

Kamasi Washington is one of those rare musicians who has managed to excite both the most deeply invested jazz enthusiasts and a broader popular audience who may not be as familiar with jazz. Based in Los Angeles, the saxophonist and composer has worked on wide-ranging projects with hip-hop artists like Kendrick Lamar, Flying Lotus, and Run the Jewels, rock acts like The Twilight Singers and Ryan Adams, and jazz artists Phil Ranelin and Harvey Mason. Washington's eclectic work earned him a reputation within the music industry as a diligent and creative force, but his 2015 album The Epic elevated him...

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Thursday, November 30, 2017

Rapsody, Sylvan Esso, and Iron & Wine Represent the Triangle in This Year's Grammy Nominations

Posted By on Thu, Nov 30, 2017 at 1:53 PM

On Tuesday, The Recording Academy announced the nominations for this year's Grammy Awards. On the very long list of honorees, you'll find a few Triangle names holding strong. Among this year's nominees is Rapsody, who's up for a Best Rap Album award for her record Laila's Wisdom, as well as Best Rap Song for her track "Sassy." She's up against some of the genre's biggest players right now: Rapsody the only woman in the album category—Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, Migos, and Tyler, The Creator are the other nominees—and "Sassy" is in competition with Cardi B's mega-hit, "Bodak Yellow," plus other tracks by...

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Monday, November 13, 2017

Patriarchy Got You Down? Fitness Womxn's New Macho City Will Fix You Up

Posted By on Mon, Nov 13, 2017 at 3:45 PM

For women and nonbinary people, the past few weeks of public revelations and oustings of various male creeps, harassers, and abusers in positions of power have been a strange situation to witness. It's-about-damn-time joy can get dampened by the pain of hearing so many survivors' stories; everything feels exhausting. Thank goodness, then, for Fitness Womxn, whose new debut full-length record sizes up patriarchal entitlement and rips it to shreds. Macho City couldn't possibly come at a better time, and you can listen to it all right now. The scrappy, punchy record splits the difference between righteously roaring catharsis ("Instructions," "Creatures")...

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Thursday, November 9, 2017

Live: In Carrboro, Yep Roc Records Celebrates Two Decades in Business

Posted By on Thu, Nov 9, 2017 at 5:44 PM

Yep Roc 20 Friday, October 20, 2017 Cat's Cradle, Carrboro When Yep Roc throws a party, the label doesn't mess around. The three-day bash celebrating the its anniversary kicked off with a high-roller party at the Cat's Cradle Back Room, exclusive for VIP ticket holders only, featuring Nick Lowe, Tift Merritt, Grant-Lee Phillips. The Friday night show in the Cradle's main room was more of some of the same, with some extra added guests and attractions. Appearing as an opener for Friday night's show was a rare occurrence for Alejandro Escovedo. His punk roots were showing early in his set,...

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Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Video Premiere: Mipso Tumbles Down the Mountain and into the Archives

Posted By on Wed, Nov 8, 2017 at 4:28 PM

Back in April, Chapel Hill quartet Mipso released Coming Down the Mountain, its fourth full-length record. Today, we've got a new video for the record's title track, which feels like a little slice of sunshine as our days start to get shorter. Crafted by Ruth Lichtman, the video is a collection of archival footage shot in the Appalachian mountains, adorned with Lichtman's colorful rotoscoping. It's a sweet, playful video that matches Mipso's easygoing pace on the track. Mipso's next hometown (sort of) stop is on Friday, November 17, at Raleigh's Lincoln Theatre. Tickets are still available here, and you can...

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The Wicked Witch, a New Music Venue, Opens in Raleigh Thursday Night

Posted By on Wed, Nov 8, 2017 at 10:05 AM

Raleigh will grow richer by one live-music venue as of tomorrow. The owners of Ruby Deluxe, which offers live music and d.j. sets, have announced the opening of The Wicked Witch at 416 W. South Street. Pegged as Ruby Deluxe’s “nasty-cool big sister,” The Wicked Witch will continue in the spirit of its predecessor. Daniel Tomas, a co-owner, says the venue will be "a space that hosts and fosters talent across our community by prioritizing our booking to showcase femme, queer, nonbinary, and people of color's voices and art. Local music fans can expect an inclusive and fun atmosphere that entertains an...

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Saturday, October 14, 2017

Video: Missed Out on IBMA Festivities? We Can Help You Catch Up.

Posted By on Sat, Oct 14, 2017 at 3:50 PM

International Bluegrass Music Association's World of Bluegrass and Wide Open Bluegrass Various venues, Downtown Raleigh Tuesday, September 26–Saturday, September 30, 2017 With the fifth installment of the International Bluegrass Music Association’s (IBMA) World of Bluegrass in Raleigh, it’s easy to get fatigued by the crowds as well as the bands, some of which have repeated with each year that the festival rolls into town. That's not to say that there weren't any exciting new acts at this year's festival—you just had to dig a bit to find them. But as it turned out, the very first act I checked out...

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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Listen to "Heather," a Driving New Cut From Reese McHenry & the Fox

Posted By on Wed, Oct 11, 2017 at 2:02 PM

In mid-July, Reese McHenry released one of the Triangle's strongest LPs of the year: a collaborative record with the mighty Spider Bags, titled Bad Girl. But she's not satisfied to stop there, apparently. With her new band, Reese McHenry & the Fox, she's continuing her impressive streak of mighty musical output with a new EP, High Comma, that's due relatively soon. "Heather" is the first of High Comma's four songs, and it's a straightforward, shadowy rock number that moves at a quick clip. As with all of her projects, McHenry's hurricane vocals take the spotlight, and she's surrounded by an...

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Thursday, October 5, 2017

Get a Sneak Peek of Rare Concert Shots in Raleigh Friday Night

Posted By on Thu, Oct 5, 2017 at 3:43 PM

Think of any recording artist who has gone on tour in the past four decades, and concert photographer Don Lawver probably has a picture of him or her. The word “any” can be used loosely at times, but in the case of Lawver, “any” means “any.” He has a collection of over four hundred thousand negatives of his own photography, with subjects ranging from Mick Jagger, Barbra Streisand, and Prince to the Beastie Boys, Nirvana, and 50 Cent. He amassed this vast collection over the course of his career as a concert photographer for his own independent magazine called Southern...

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Heading to Biff Rose Tonight? You Might Want to Check His Website.

Posted By on Thu, Oct 5, 2017 at 2:47 PM

Update, 5:42 p.m.: This show has been canceled. Tonight at Neptunes Parlour, the musician and comedian Biff Rose performs at 8 p.m. In the sixties, Rose worked as a comedy writer with George Carlin and released a few influential, popular records. In the seventies, he earned accolades from David Bowie for his creative efforts, and he's remained somewhat of a weirdo cult favorite. And then there's the Biff Rose of today, the one that Neptunes hosts in just a few hours. One quick look at Rose's website reveals blatantly racist and anti-Semitic material. A link on the front page that...

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Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Live: Top-Notch Bluegrass from the Soggy Bottom Boys in O Brother Mode

Posted By on Wed, Sep 20, 2017 at 4:10 PM

Soggy Bottom Boys Carolina Theatre, Durham Wednesday, July 5, 2017 “I’ll admit we did have a few problems with the law, but since they legalized a few things in Tennessee, the Soggy Bottom Boys are back in business” exclaimed Stuart Duncan, fiddler and founding member of the group. Earlier this summer, The Soggy Bottom Boys are out on the road bringing the critically acclaimed songs from the film O Brother, Where Art Thou? to the stage, as well as many other songs in the same spirit, casting a new spotlight on the entire genre of bluegrass and old-time music. Just...

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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Live: The National Folk Festival Pays Off Before Parting Ways

Posted By on Tue, Sep 12, 2017 at 1:53 PM

National Folk Festival 2017 Greensboro Thursday, September 8–Sunday, September 10, 2017 This stuff can be hazardous to your health, both mentally and physically. There's too much eye and ear candy in easy reach at the National Folk Festival in Greensboro. It's not really the festival's fault; its layout is such that, if you pace yourself, you can see every act on the three-day schedule. That's the theory, but in practice it's hard. Once you get there, you want to take it all in, and by the time the day ends and you've walked from one end of the two-mile...

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Sunday, September 10, 2017

Hopscotch, Night Three: Solange Reigns Supreme

Posted By on Sun, Sep 10, 2017 at 12:07 PM

Hopscotch Music Festival Downtown Raleigh Saturday, September 9, 2017 I didn’t make it out to any Saturday day parties, but the evening was more than enough entertainment. The Saturday of Hopscotch is always the most crowded day, as single-day passes for those who couldn’t or didn’t want to get off work Thursday and Friday are out in full force. My evening started with Big Boi, who managed to keep the crowded entertained with every other song, but only those from the Outkast oevure got the biggest reaction. “So Fresh, So Clean” and “Ms. Jackson” had the crowd going moderately...

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Hopscotch, Night Three: ILOVEMAKKONEN Cancels, But Phonte Fills In

Posted By on Sun, Sep 10, 2017 at 11:33 AM

Hopscotch Music Festival Downtown Raleigh Saturday, September 9, 2017 Can we get another round of applause for Phonte? In lieu of a scheduled set on Saturday from ILOVEMAKKONEN that didn’t materialize, the Little Brother/Foreign Exchange member and Raleigh resident was brought in Saturday morning to patch things with a rare solo performance at City Plaza. As he hilariously framed the situation during his set: “Thank you Makonnen for canceling, you are paying for my wedding night.” There were more jokes, and also a spectacular rap set of the sort that's all too rare on larger stages in 2017. Sing-along backing...

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Saturday, September 9, 2017

Hopscotch, Night Two: Heavy on the Hip-Hop

Posted By on Sat, Sep 9, 2017 at 11:32 AM

Hopscotch Music Festival Downtown Raleigh Friday, September 8, 2017 For night two of Hopscotch, I encountered a similar "what now?" feeling to the one I encountered on the first day. Fortunately, the schedule had enough going that it gave attendees something to go on an adventure to fulfill that query. K 97.5’s day party at Pour House was surprisingly packed, and a satisfying place to start the day. The bill featured almost everyone in local hip-hop who was deserving of an official Hopscotch slot, but didn’t make the cut this year. Stand out performances from 3am, Imani Pressley, M8balla, and...

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Hopscotch, Night Two: Making the Most of a Musical Smorgasbord

Posted By on Sat, Sep 9, 2017 at 10:38 AM

Hopscotch Music Festival Downtown Raleigh Friday, September 8, 2017 Despite the growth of Hopscotch, over its eight years of existence, Friday proved that the festival’s hallmarks—its diverse smorgasbord of options and its ability to remind that North Carolina’s scene can compete on the same platform as national acts—are as intact as ever. Speaking with Nathan Price a couple of weeks before the festival, the new Hopscotch executive director mentioned his goal of trying to avoid pitting two acts of the same genre against one another as the festival grows—“you’ll end with two metal shows at the same time” and pull...

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Hopscotch, Night One: Slacking Off Pays Off

Posted By on Sat, Sep 9, 2017 at 8:58 AM

Hopscotch Music Festival Downtown Raleigh Thursday, September 7, 2017 The first day at any music festival, especially Hopscotch, brings a collective feeling of anticipation and excitement, but with a side of hesitation and caution because they start on a weekday. There’s an unshakable feeling that you’re slacking off somehow, even if you’re attending for work. At least that’s how I feel when I start my festivities every year at Hopscotch, and I’ve been doing this for four years now. Regardless, these events are a departure from normal life for everyone, from normal attendees to the artists to the people running...

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Friday, September 8, 2017

Hopscotch, Night One: New Spaces and Familiar Faces

Posted By on Fri, Sep 8, 2017 at 8:08 AM

Hopscotch Music Festival Downtown Raleigh Thursday, September 7, 2017 Down an inconspicuous side hallway in the Raleigh Convention Center, a pair of glowing escalators will shuttle you to and from Exhibit Hall A, also known as The Basement, Hopscotch’s newest venue. Don’t be fooled by the DIY-sounding name, though: it's no scuzzy thirty-capacity show space. Stripped of the bulky booths and partitions that large regional events like Animazement typically use, the room is absolutely massive. Upon entering, I felt as though I was walking into a cavernous City Plaza-sized industrial warehouse, buried just beneath downtown Raleigh. The space is undeniably...

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Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Batalá Durham Gets Shut Down Again, Even as Liberty Warehouse Residents Offer Support

Posted By on Tue, Aug 8, 2017 at 10:01 AM

Last night, Batalá Durham assembled for its weekly practice at Durham Central Park. The community-oriented samba-reggae percussion ensemble has been at the center of a conflict that spotlights one of the ugly realities of Durham’s urban development. Though the group has had permission to practice in the park during warm months for over a year, complaints from a resident at the new Liberty Warehouse Apartments across the street have resulted in Durham police shutting down the group’s rehearsals. We ran a story about the issue last week, and several residents of Liberty Warehouse chimed in with their support of Batalá...

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Friday, August 4, 2017

Liberty Warehouse Apartment Residents Chime In to Support Batalá Durham

Posted By on Fri, Aug 4, 2017 at 2:28 PM

While Liberty Warehouse Apartments may not have offered any official comment on its tension with Batalá Durham, several residents have. As it turns out, many of them are in favor of Batalá Durham's Central Park practices, and blame a single unidentified resident for all of the trouble. Chatter began on Wednesday in the comments section of the original story, where residents Kirk Royal, Ashley Miles, and Lauren Faber expressed their thoughts on the matter. In a longer comment, Royal wrote, "I, for one, am going to be royally PISSED if this ONE person's quixotic pursuit of bland whitebread suburban 'bliss'...

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Video: Mandolin Orange Plays to a Packed House at NCMA

Posted By on Fri, Aug 4, 2017 at 1:09 PM

Mandolin Orange North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh Saturday, July 22, 2017 The heatwave sweeping the Triangle in late July continued as the gates opened to the North Carolina Museum of Art as a sold-out crowd lined up to brave the temperatures to see Mandolin Orange. Part of the museum’s twentieth season, dubbed its “homegrown season,” the evening also included a performance by Joe Pug, a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill graduate, who opened the show. In recent months, Mandolin Orange has been busy touring the country, with notable stops at the famed Red Rocks venue in Colorado...

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Here Are the Local Bands Donating Their Bandcamp Proceeds to the Transgender Law Center Today

Posted By on Fri, Aug 4, 2017 at 8:54 AM

At the end of January, the digital sales and streaming platform Bandcamp announced that, for one day, it would donate its entire cut of music and merchandise sales to the American Civil Liberties Union. That February 3 campaign was a raging success, raising more than $100,000 for the civil rights organization. This week, the site announced that it would hold a similar drive for the Transgender Law Center, a nonprofit that advocates for trans rights through law and policy. The campaign runs through midnight Pacific time today (so, 3 a.m. Eastern Standard Time). Below are the local bands and labels...

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