Throughout her career, Wynonna Judd has stood in country music's spotlight. Performing as The Judds, she and her mother Naomi topped the country singles charts 14 times in the '80s. When Wynonna released her first solo album in 1992, she scored another three No. 1 hits, including the top song of that year, "I Saw The Light." (Yes, it even outperformed "Achy Breaky Heart.")
Sam Lee and friends are in the World Cafe studio today for a set of lovingly updated British folk music. Lee made his name by collecting, restoring and sharing ancient music from Britain and Ireland, as well as the Roma (Gypsy) and Irish Traveler communities. Before releasing his first album in 2012, Lee immersed himself in music: Unsatisfied with songbooks and rare recordings, he sought out people who knew the songs and learned them firsthand.
The music of Edward David Anderson feels well-worn. But the man who's been making it since 1997 — both on his own and with the bands Backyard Tire Fire and Brother Jed — really found his home when he arrived in L.A. (Lower Alabama, that is.)
It's bittersweet to replay this session with Ian McLagan from 2005. The British keyboardist, who died in December 2014, was known as Mac to all of his friends — and if you met him, he was your friend. McLagan was a force for fun, and his gigs in his adopted hometown of Austin, Texas, were always rowdy.
Setting sun, wind and waves and hills — these are all elements of the lyrics on Patty Griffin's new album, Servant Of Love. She says those references come from noticing the spiritual interconnection between nature andhumans, which she says makes it harder to be cynical.
Writer Judy Cantor-Navas recently moved to Barcelona, Spain, an area dominated by Catalan culture. Ahead of Catalonia's parliamentary election Sunday, she shares some distinctively Catalan music with us.
Youth Lagoon is the work of indie-pop artist Trevor Powers, whose new album, Savage Hills Ballroom,is the third in a series showcasing his strong melodic sense as well as his experimental side. Powers says the death of a good friend at home in Boise, Idaho, led him to rethink how he dealt with emotional discomfort, which in turn helped him make better art. He spent two months with producer Ali Chant in Bristol, England to record Savage Hills Ballroom.
World Cafe welcomes back Silver Lake, Calif., band Silversun Pickups, whose new album, Better Nature, comes out Friday. The shoegazey band's 2006 debut, Carnavas, contained modern-rock staples like "Lazy Eye" and "Well Thought Out Twinkles," and was a major success that started the band on its way.