In Your Ear: Raul Midon

Singer songwriter Raul Midon has earned comparisons to soul legends like Stevie Wonder and Donny Hathaway. He shares with Tell Me More the music that's currently inspiring him.

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MICHEL MARTIN, host:

Finally, we're going to end today's program with our occasional series In Your Ear. That's where we ask some of our guests to tell us about the music that's keeping them grooving. Today we hear from singer-songwriter Raul Midon. Fans and critics say his style reminds them of the best of soul icon, Stevie Wonder and Donny Hathaway. And now he tells us what's topping his personal playlist.

Mr. RAUL MIDON (Singer-songwriter): Hi, this is Raul Midon and I'm listening to (Foreign language spoken) from a record called "Paku(ph) Now." I just love this kind of music because it's completely organic.

(Soundbite of music) (Foreign language spoken)

Mr. MIDON: It's the equivalent of counterpoint but in rhythm.

(Soundbite of music) (Foreign language spoken)

Mr. MIDON: It's a style called La Wunko(ph) and it's a very very intricate rhythmic patterns going on.

(Soundbite of music) (Foreign language spoken)

Mr. MIDON: I'm also listening to Suzanne Vega. A song called "New York is a Lady."

(Soundbite of song, "New York is a Woman")

Ms. SUZANNE VEGA (Singer-songwriter): (Singing) New York City spread herself before you, with her bangles and her spangles and her stars. You were impressed with the city so undressed, had to go out cruising all the bars.

Mr. MIDON: Suzanne Vega has, it's one of those things that when you put on a record of Suzanne Vega's, every song is great. Every song lyrically paints a picture. It's like going to school for lyric writing, I think. I think it's just a - I think she's an amazing writer and I just love this lyric. It's just a wonderful sort of putting together of lyrics and melody.

(Soundbite of song, "New York is a Woman")

Ms. SUZANNE VEGA: (Singing) And she's every girl you've seen in every movie, every dame you've ever known on late night TV. In her steam and steel is the passion you feel, endlessly. New York is a woman. She'll make you cry and to her you're just another guy.

Mr. MIDON: I'm also listening Donald Fagan, the great record "The Nightfly." I just love this whole album, but particularly, I think the song is called "Goodbye Look," the last song on the album.

(Soundbite of song, "The Goodbye Look")

Mr. DONALD FAGAN (Musician and singer-songwriter): (Singing) The rules are changed. It's not the same. It's all new players in a whole new ball game. Last night I dreamed of an old lover dressed in gray. I've had this fever now since yesterday.

Mr. MIDON: But it's a wonderful lyric and kind of has a sort of tropical kind of bounce to it.

(Soundbite of song, "The Goodbye Look")

Mr. FAGAN: (Singing) I know what happens. I read the book. I believe I just got the goodbye look. I believe I just got the goodbye look. I believe I just got the goodbye look.

MARTIN: That was Raul Midon telling us about the music playing in his ear. To hear his recent interview with us, go to TELL ME MORE's website on the program page of npr.org.

And that's our program for today. Im Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Lets talk more tomorrow.

(Soundbite of music)

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