Roots Culture Redefined

WATCH: Samantha Crain, “Bloomsday”

Artist: Samantha Crain Hometown: Shawnee, Oklahoma Single: “Bloomsday” Album: I Guess We Live Here Now EP Release Date: April 9, 2021 Label: Real Kind/Communion In Their Words: “‘Bloomsday’ is the kind of song I never thought I’d be able to write. There is a ce...
Shout & Shine

Indigenous Songwriter Julian Taylor Connects Family and Folk on ‘The Ridge’

Canadian singer-songwriter Julian Taylor didn’t set out to make a country record with The Ridge, but the album oozes with authentic tinges of the vibrant, pan-Canadian roots music scene. Based for most of his career in Toronto, it’s not surprising that the album (produced by Saam Hashemi) feels c...

BGS 5+5: Raye Zaragoza

Artist: Raye Zaragoza Hometown: Greenwich Village, Manhattan, NYC Latest album: Woman In Color (Rebel River Records) Personal nicknames (or rejected band names): Ray was my nickname for my whole life. My full name is Rayanna. I added the e when I started playing music! What’s your favorite ...
Indigenous Voices

LISTEN: William Prince, “Gospel First Nation”

Artist: William Prince Hometown: Peguis First Nation – Manitoba Song: “Gospel First Nation” Album: Gospel First Nation Release Date: October 23, 2020 Label: Glassnote In Their Words: “Gospel is by definition ‘the good news.’ These songs were capable of lifting spirit...

WATCH: Raye Zaragoza, “They Say” (Featuring Colin Meloy & Laura Veirs)

Artist: Raye Zaragoza (feat. Colin Meloy on harmonica and Laura Veirs on banjo) Hometown: New York City Song: “They Say” Album: Woman in Color (produced by Tucker Martine) Release Date: October 23, 2020 Label: Rebel River Records In Their Words: “This song is about the dysfuncti...
Song Premiere

LISTEN: Cary Morin, “Valley of the Chiefs”

Artist: Cary Morin Hometown: Lives in Fort Collins, Colorado; from Great Falls, Montana Song: “Valley of the Chiefs” Album: Dockside Saints Release Date: August 7, 2020 In Their Words: “A true story told by my great grandmother at my Crow naming ceremony when I was about four years ol...

Best of: Live From Here

This month brought the unfortunate news that Live From Here, hosted by Chris Thile, has been cancelled. The American Public Media-produced radio show, previously known as A Prairie Home Companion, has been beloved by listeners since its inception in 1974, and continued in 2016 when the series was...
Indigenous Voices

LISTEN: Julian Taylor, “Love Enough”

Artist: Julian Taylor Hometown: Toronto, Ontario, Canada Song: “Love Enough” Album: The Ridge Release Date: May 8, 2020 (single); June 19, 2020 (album) Label: Howling Turtle Inc. In Their Words: “The thing about this song is that melody has lived with me for over a decade, but t...
Indigenous Voices

William Prince Sparks Joy on ‘Reliever’

When Canadian songwriter William Prince cites his influences, there’s one that is particularly surprising: The Mighty Ducks, a feel-good hockey film from 1992. In one pivotal scene, the kids on the down-and-out team get all-new equipment — a cinematic turn of events that Prince has never fo...

WATCH: Samantha Crain, “Garden Dove”

Artist: Samantha Crain Hometown: Shawnee, Oklahoma Song: “Garden Dove” Album: A Small Death Release Date: July 17, 2020 Label: Ramseur Records/Thirty Tigers and Real Kind Records/Communion In Their Words: “With the idea in mind of being better for yourself and learning to love y...

You Need to Listen to More Indigenous Artists

American roots music wouldn’t exist without Indigenous people. Full stop. Just as Black voices and stories largely informed the creation of these genres of music — old-time, bluegrass, blues, Americana, folk, etc. — Indigenous voices and stories often informed those black creato...

Six of the Best: Protest Songs

It’s hard to pick my favorite protest songs. The Woody, the Dylan, the ’60s counterculture pop hits, the singularly chilling “Strange Fruit” — I love them all. The original “This Land Is Your Land” is an anarchist hymn, Dylan’s “Masters of War” is as scathing and righteous today...
Shout & Shine

Lakota John Laces Native Lineage with North Carolina Roots

Born and raised in North Carolina, of course John Locklear (AKA Lakota John) could draw from strong regional and cultural influences to create his sound: old-timey, down home, acoustic blues. But his North Carolina roots aren’t his only connection to the Piedmont, and the vast, richly diver...
Small World

Ranky Tanky Takes Gullah Culture Around the Globe

You don’t need to know the first thing about Gullah culture to appreciate Good Time, the second album by the South Carolina quintet Ranky Tanky. But each song provides a short lesson on this little-known corner of American music. Take “Sometime,” an absolute jam that’s so fast, so breakneck that ...

The Shift List – Chef Sheldon Simeon (Lineage Maui, Tin Roof) – Maui, Hawaii

Chef Sheldon Simeon is as passionate about music as he is about bringing Hawaiian food to a new generation. On the Season 2 premiere episode of The Shift List podcast, Chef Sheldon revealed that if he could do anything other than be a chef, it would be a ukulele player.

LISTEN: Lisa Bastoni, “Walk a Little Closer” (Feat. Lula Wiles)

Artist: Lisa Bastoni Hometown: Boston, Massachusetts Song: “Walk a Little Closer” (featuring Lula Wiles) Album: How We Want to Live Release Date: September 20, 2019 In Their Words: “One day a couple of winters ago, Sean Staples (How We Want to Live‘s producer) and I were w...

Kauai Folk Festival Will Celebrate Music of Hawaii and Beyond

Even for knowledgeable fans of folk music, the lineup of the Kauai Folk Festival offers plenty of artists to discover from Hawaii and beyond. Along with headliners like Taj Mahal’s Hula Blues Band and Peter Rowan’s My Aloha Bluegrass Band, the two-day roster also features Hawaiian music from Puka...

The Show On The Road – Celeigh Cardinal

This week host Z. Lupetin speaks with the high priestess of Canadiana soul, Celeigh Cardinal.