Favorite Sessions Exclusive studio sessions recorded at public radio stations across the country.

Rudolf Buchbinder's Robust Beethoven

WGBH Radio

Hailing from the classical-music capital of Vienna, Rudolf Buchbinder specializes in the composers who made his hometown famous. Hear him play an impassioned rendition of Beethoven's "Pathétique" Sonata in the studio of WGBH in Boston.

Hear Rudolf Buchbinder Play Beethoven At WGBH

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Umalali: The 'Voice' Of The Garifuna

KEXP

Put together by producer and musician Ivan Duran from Belize, Umalali seeks to revive the Garifuna culture of Central America. In a session from KEXP, the group performs a song by Andy Palacio, a talented Garifuna musician who died early last year.

Umalali in Studio on KEXP 9/15/08

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Nikka Costa: Small Frame, Big Voice

WFUV On-Air: Music Discovery Starts Here

When R&B singer Nikka Costa came to WFUV to record a studio session, she brought with her a wealth of experience and international fame. Yet when she sat down for the interview, Costa didn't display any of the qualities of a person living a charmed life. She performs with a seven-piece band from WFUV.

Nikka Costa in Studio on WFUV 10/22/08

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Robert Glasper: The Inauguration Session

WBGO

Pianist Robert Glasper is an example of the freedom principle at work; walking proof that art is forever the great (small-d) democrat. A soon-to-be father, Glasper says he's excited about the world his child will soon enter, and he describes what Obama's presidency means for jazz.

Robert Glasper Trio in Studio on WBGO

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The Gourds: A Reliable Austin Export

KUT 90.5

The Gourds' members present their music in familiar roots-rock wrappings, but nothing about the band is typical. Cheating hearts or lovesick blues don't dominate the band's landscape; instead, this is a brainy and obtuse bunch, and its songs reflect that fact. Hear the band perform new material from KUT.

The Gourds in Studio on KUT 12/30/08

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The Hold Steady: Rock Stripped Bare

KEXP

The group gets pared down to a trio for this casual acoustic session from KEXP. Craig Finn stood at the mic as Tad Kubler and Franz Nicolay handled an acoustic guitar, banjo and accordion. The set-up lets Finn's voice resonate, which means his great lyrics stand out even more than usual.

The Hold Steady in Studio on World Cafe 11/21/08

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Emiliana Torrini: From Iceland, Stripped Down

WFUV On-Air: Music Discovery Starts Here

Many have heard Emiliana Torrini's voice, but few know that her vocals ended the movie The Two Towers. The Icelandic singer-songwriter has released a number of albums and is now getting her due. She performs a stripped-down incarnation of her new music in a session from WFUV.

Emiliana Torrini in Studio on WFUV 10/3/08

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Guitarist Charlie Hunter: Serve The Music First

KNKX Public Radio

Counting fans among lovers of straight-ahead jazz, the avant-garde and jam bands, Charlie Hunter has spent more than a decade defining his guitar style. In a session from Jazz24, Hunter unveils his new approach to technique that serves the music first.

Charlie Hunter in Studio on Jazz24 10/10/08

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Jessica Lea Mayfield: Ahead Of Schedule

WKSU

An honest and seasoned performer, Mayfield has a real knack for poetry and powerful lyrics. At 19, the singer-songwriter already has a wealth of experience behind her. In a video session from Folk Alley, she performs two songs from her debut album.

Jessica Lea Mayfield in Studio on Folk Alley

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Occidental Brothers: African Highlife In Chicago

KEXP

When KEXP broadcast from Chicago this past summer, the station was turned on to a local gem. The Occidental Brothers Dance Band International brings rock- and jazz-trained American musicians together with Ghanian musicians in a cross-cultural throwdown. Hear the session.

Occidental Brothers Dance Band International in Studio on KEXP 7/18/08

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