All Songs Considered, the NPR podcast and radio show hosted by Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton, has been fostering public-radio listeners' musical discovery for 16 years. To celebrate, the two picked their favorite song from each of those 16 years to spotlight in a recent episode of the show.
Darlingside is a folk-pop group formed at Williams College in western Massachusetts. The band's lovely music is full of layered harmonies and arrangements — a sound you can hear for yourself in this session as the band performs songs from Birds Say, its first nationally released full-length album.
Don't forget to grab a free download of Darlingside's World Cafe performance of "Go Back" below.
After meeting at Western Washington University in 2012, ODESZA (the duo of DJs Harrison Mills and Clayton Knight) has seen rapid success in the past few years. Twenty-one of the duo's songs have hit No. 1 on Hype Machine, and ODESZA has performed at huge American music festivals like Coachella, Bonnaroo, Firefly and Lollapalooza, where Mills and Knight have been joined by a live guitarist and horn section.
Sometime after his first World Cafe session in 1997, recorded live at Sigma Sound Studios in Philadelphia, David Bowie came by to chat with David Dye for back-to-back years. Both appearances happened while Bowie was on tour with new records, 2002's Heathen and 2003's Reality.
Now, in the wake of David Bowie's death Sunday, here are both of the sessions, dusted off and fresh out of the archives.
The New York band Sunflower Bean rocks harder than its name might suggest. Together as a trio since 2013, the band buzzes and chimes psychedelically on its first full-length album, Human Ceremony. As lead singer and bassist Julia Cumming puts it, in describing the stylistic pull within Sunflower Bean's music, "You're allowed to obsess over Black Sabbath as well as The Cure.
This past August, Jeff Lynne released Alone In The Universe, the first new ELO album in 14 years. In this session, Lynne explains how ELO's performance at a 2014 benefit concert in Hyde Park inspired him to make a new album. ELO is known for its 30- to 40-person orchestras, which allowed Lynne to produce such a full sound, but in today's session he confesses to the fatigue that comes with doing it all the time.
For this episode of Latin Roots from World Cafe, Catalina Maria Johnson discusses the importance and influence of Andean music, both old and new. We'll hear the song that inspired Paul Simon's "El Condor Pasa" with the classic sound of Peruvian pipes and more. Hear the complete segment above and check out the Andean Music Spotify Playlist for more.
Lifelong rocker Jesse Malin was born in Queens and formed the hardcore band Heart Attack when he was 12. More than a decade later, in 1991, he became the leader of the glam- and punk-influenced band D Generation, which recently re-formed to tour and is releasing its first album of new music in more than 15 years later this year.
After getting its start in San Francisco in 1965 and holding onto an early-'50s rock sound that was out of place with the psychedelic ballroom scene, the Flamin' Groovies gained more fame in the early '70s when Cyril Jordan took sole control from original member Roy Loney.
Phil Cook returns to World Cafe, but this time he's not supporting M.C. Taylor and Hiss Golden Messenger. Instead, he's here to perform songs from his first solo album, Southland Mission. Three years in the making, the album is also the first solo release from a member of Megafaun, Cook's psychedelic folk band with friends who'd moved to North Carolina from Eau Claire, Wisc.