KWIT

Andrew Flanagan

Chinese-born composer Du Yun has taken home this year's Pulitzer Prize for music for her opera Angel's Bone, it was announced today during a ceremony in New York.

"Our theory was simple," wrote Daniel Ek, co-founder and CEO of Spotify, in 2014, "offer a terrific free tier, supported by advertising, as a starting point to attract fans and get them in the door."

So what happens after everybody's crossed the threshold?

In the annals of pop music history, the release of The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band on June 1, 1967 operated as a fulcrum upon which the scales of rock 'n' roll were tipped forevermore towards ambitious refraction, sonic metaphor and unashamed exploration of the far-afield spaces in our minds. Its 50th birthday, then, is something to be celebrated — and oh, how it is.

Kendrick Lamar dropped the presumptive first single — titled "Humble" — from his highly anticipated forthcoming album on Thursday night, just a week after teasing new music with a cryptic Instagram post.

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify or Apple Music playlist at the bottom of the page.

Last fall, the Nobel Committee for Literature announced that its newest honoree would be Bob Dylan, immediately generating heated debates on whether he deserved the prize.

On March 18, Drake released More Life, 22 songs packaged as what he's calling a playlist and what everyone else (including the streaming svengalis at Apple Music and Spotify) have categorized as an album. Whatever you call it, on Monday, Billboard announced that More Life had arrived at the top of the Billboard 200, which tracks the performance of the world's most popular albums, mostly through fans streaming it on Spotify and Apple Music.

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AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Unexpected releases, surprise announcements, the loss of giants - this week the music news kept coming. And here with the latest, NPR music editors Jacob Ganz. Hey there, Jacob.

JACOB GANZ, BYLINE: Hi, Audie.

This is the story of a hoax that almost was. Its motivating force was a hunger for fame, or infamy, or whispered legend in a particularly American sort of way. It begins on a beach somewhere in south Florida.

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