The Bluegrass Situation: Roots Culture Redefined

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FeaturesJun 11, 2018

We don't blame you. Banjo is typically all about praising the masters, mimicking their technique, and playing "it" -- whatever tune, song, lick, or fill -- exactly the way the heroes did it. Of course it's easy to overlook up-and-coming pickers who are innovating the instrument and letting their own personalities shine through their playing.…

FeaturesJun 6, 2018

Despite never having desired a musical career, Liz Vice set about answering a higher calling with her 2015 debut album, There’s a Light. She spread a message of inclusivity and love, even while self-doubt, impostor syndrome, and a hellacious tour threatened to upend her very sense of self. Making it to her sophomore album, Save…

FeaturesJun 4, 2018

There are three things that you need to know about Del McCoury before anything else: His hair is incomparable, he giggles almost ceaselessly, and he still sings bluegrass. Fifty years ago, after ending his stint with Bill Monroe’s Blue Grass Boys as lead singer and guitarist, McCoury released his debut solo project, Del McCoury Sings…

FeaturesJun 4, 2018

In 1965, a dejected Paul Simon went for an extended stay in England. When he returned home to New York toward the end of the year, he brought Anji with him. Well, “Anji.” A piece of music, not a woman. “Anji” — sometimes spelled “Angi” or “Angie” — was written and first recorded in the…

FeaturesMay 30, 2018

Loreena McKennitt is both a Romantic and a pragmatist. During a thirty-year career that began with her busking on the Toronto subway and led to composing a new work for the Royal Canadian Air Force, the Canadian singer-songwriter-producer-historian has dug deep into European musical traditions (the Celts in particular) and has found vivid inspiration in…