Musicians Respond to Racism Against Asian Americans

Reports of violence against Asian Americans have increased dramatically since the start of the pandemic, by nearly 150 percent in 2020 compared to the year before. Then 2021 saw a mass shooting in Atlanta that killed eight people, including six Asian Americans. The rise in media coverage about racism towards Asian American communities has ignited a conversation about how we, as a country, view Asian Americans. Grace Madigan reports on how Asian American musicians have been impacted and responded through their music. Resources: https://www.advancingjustice-aajc.org/ https://18millionrising.org/ https://stopaapihate.org/ Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

[Unedited] Can't Stop Won't Stop: A Hip Hop History

'Can't Stop Won't Stop' was a book first published in 2005 by Jeff Chang that chronicled the early hip hop scene. It has now been rereleased with updates and a focus on a young adult audience with writing contributions by DJ, historian and professor Davey D Cook. KEXP's Gabriel Teodros caught up with Davey D and Jeff Chang about the new edition and the power of hip hop. "This is the hidden history of America," Chang says. "Hip hop has that sort of hidden transcript of what really went on, what didn't end up on the front page." Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Can't Stop Won't Stop: A Hip Hop History

'Can't Stop Won't Stop' was a book first published in 2005 by Jeff Chang that chronicled the early hip hop scene. It has now been rereleased with updates and a focus on a young adult audience with writing contributions by DJ, historian and professor Davey D Cook. KEXP's Gabriel Teodros caught up with Davey D and Jeff Chang about the new edition and the power of hip hop. "This is the hidden history of America," Chang says. "Hip hop has that sort of hidden transcript of what really went on, what didn't end up on the front page." Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Seattle's Long Lost Punk Record

Before Seattle's Duff McKagan went on to become the bassist for Guns N' Roses and before Seattle's Mother Love Bone started influencing the city's grunge sound, there was The Living. It was an early 80's Seattle punk band made up of a teenage Duff McKagan on guitar, Greg Gilmore (of Mother Love Bone) on drums, Todd Fleischman on bass, and John Conte as the band's frontman. Seattle's Loosegroove Records, which is co-run by Pearl Jam guitarist Stone Gossard, has just released The Living's album, titled '1982,' for the very first time. "It's Seattle hardcore, pre-grunge [...] it really showcases who the real king of grunge is and I think it might be Duff and Greg and Todd and John," Gossard says. For this episode, drummer Greg Gilmore talks about the themes on the record and how it's finally seeing the light of day. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

London Grammar Reacts to Industry Misogyny in New Album

London Grammar frontwoman Hannah Reid talks about how misogyny in the music industry inspired her band's latest album, 'Californian Soil.' "I just encountered a lot of what I would call daily sexist assumptions and microaggressions," Reid says. She also talks about nearly giving up on music, how burnout led to her developing fibromyalgia, which causes fatigue and pain all over the body, and how she manages it as a performer. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Tune-Yards on Appropriation vs. Inspiration

When Tune-Yards first hit the scene with their 2009 album, 'Bird-brains,' you could hear that some songs pulled sounds, melodies and rhythms from African music traditions. Their 2018 album, 'I Can Feel You Creep Into My Private Life,' was written after frontwoman Merill Garbus took a six-month workshop on race. You can hear the effects of that workshop on the track, "Colonizer." With all that in mind, for Live on KEXP At Home, Larry Mizell Jr. chatted with Garbus about the work she's done on race, on appropriation vs. inspiration and Tune-Yards' most recent album, released March 26th, called 'Sketchy.' Watch the full session on KEXP's YouTube channel. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

What I Played When the Verdict Came Down

It's been one week since former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty of all three charges for the killing of George Floyd. Larry Mizell Jr. was DJing live on KEXP the moment the verdict came down last Tuesday. Here's his essay reflecting on the day, the death of George Floyd and many other Black lives, through music. Read Larry's essay here. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Sharon Van Etten Breaks Down Anniversary Cover Album, 'epic Ten'

Sharon Van Etten has just released 'epic Ten,' a double album celebrating the tenth anniversary of her 2010 release, 'epic.' The release features both the original record and an LP of covers by Fiona Apple, Big Red Machine, IDLES, Courtney Barnett with Vagabon, Lucinda Williams, and more. KEXP's Cheryl Waters talks with Sharon Van Etten about 'epic Ten' and has her break down some of the covers on the record. You can read the full interview here. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Japanese Breakfast on New Memoir, 'Crying in H Mart'

Japanese Breakfast frontwoman Michelle Zauner discusses her new memoir, 'Crying in H Mart.' In the book, she beautifully illustrates how she has dealt with the grief of losing her mother by cooking Korean food, and how her understanding of her mother has evolved since her death. She also discusses the complicated nature of being mixed race, and how she's found a sense of belonging through her artistic practices. "Part of being mixed race and losing your parent that sort of connects you to that part of your culture, you just start to question, is this even an inherent part of my identity?" Zauner says. "I think that now I just really have to work to preserve that part of myself instead of it just being innately a part of me because of my mom's existence." Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

We'll Be Back Next Week!

We're taking a week off from posting podcasts and other online content, but you can always find a live DJ streaming on KEXP.org, the KEXP App, or 90.3 FM in Seattle. New episodes will return to your Sound & Vision feed on Tuesday, April 20th! Until then, visit old episodes or explore our other podcasts, Song of the Day, Live on KEXP, and The Weekly Mix. And if you haven't had the chance yet, there's still time to take the KEXP Podcast Survey. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

How 'Big Music' Is Hurting the Industry

If you want to understand the impact of major labels on the music industry, look no further than a recent article in Wired titled, "Big Music Needs to Be Broken Up to Save the Industry." It covers how corporate power has taken over streaming, recording, ticketing and music venues. Author Ron Knox breaks down the history behind the music economy and its impacts, as well as possible solutions. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Brandi Carlile's Memoir

Emily Fox discusses Brandi Carlile's new memoir, 'Broken Horses,' with KEXP volunteer and mega Brandi Carlile fan, Bee Egan. They discuss themes from the book, like the power of Brandi's vulnerability, how she came into her identity through music and performance, and her chills-inducing 2019 Grammys performance, as well as Bee's personal connection to the artist. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Spotify and Streaming Transparency

Spotify recently launched a website and initiative called Loud & Clear. It's Spotify's attempt at being transparent about how artists are paid and the economics of streaming. The Union of Musicians and Allied workers have been calling for greater transparency at Spotify along with a request to stop court battles that lower royalty rates for songwriters, and to pay artists one cent per stream. Zack Nestel-Patt of UMAW breaks down how artists are paid through Spotify, discusses how Spotify still has not met the union's demands and says that Loud & Clear was "further obfuscation of what's going on mixed with baulking that Spotify is doing anything wrong and pointing the finger at other people." Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

KEXP's Top Played Songs of Women's History Month

As we wrap up Women's History Month, Emily Fox and KEXP DJs Morgan Chosnyk and Eva Walker break down the stories and songs behind the top three most played women artists on KEXP during March: Arlo Parks, Japanese Breakfast and Noname. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Seattle's Smiley, Singing Bus Driver

KEXP recently celebrated Transit Operator Appreciation Day. There's one transit operator in particular that has touched the life of KEXP's Larry Mizell, Jr. It's Reggie "Smiley" Wilson. He's hilarious and humble, he sings on the job, cracks jokes, shares words of wisdom and always drives with a colorful sign that says "Smile." "The best thing to do with a smile is give it away," Wilson says. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

One Year of Bandcamp Fridays

March 20th marked the one-year anniversary of Bandcamp Fridays. Once a month, Bandcamp has been waiving its 15% share on digital music and 10% share on artist merch to help support artists during the pandemic. Josh Kim, COO of Bandcamp, talks about the impact of holding Bandcamp Friday every month for the past year. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

SoundCloud's New "Fan-Powered Royalties"

SoundCloud is rolling out a new payment method for artists on its platform on April 1st called "fan-powered royalties." Instead of artists being paid according to their share of overall streams on the platform, listeners' ad revenue and subscription fees will go directly to the artists they listen to. SoundCloud's Head of Rights Administration and Strategy, Michael Pelczynski, breaks down how the new "fan-powered royalties" model will work. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

How NFTs are Making Musicians Millions

Musicians have been making millions of dollars in recent weeks for auctioning off their music in the form of an NFT (Non-Fungible Token). Grimes made nearly $6 million in 20 minutes doing it, EDM artist 3lau has made more than $11 million and Kings of Leon just released a full album as an NFT. Chase Danzig joins this episode to fill us in on how NFTs work. He runs a YouTube channel called "The Bitcoin Express," and recently released a video titled, "How NFT Will Take Over the Music Industry." Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Apparently: Touring, Fatherhood & Recovery

Sound & Vision's mini-series, Apparently, explores the intersection of parenthood and being a musician. For this next artist, he's also struggled with addiction on top of it all. Pearl Nelson, also known as Pearl Dragon of the band Champagne Champagne, talks about idolizing Kurt Cobain and Jimi Hendrix, falling into addiction on tour, and his path to recovery. He also discusses finally being in a place where he's ready to tour again with clarity and confidence in his sobriety. KEXP is a listener-funded nonprofit, and we need your help to keep creating podcasts like this one. Donate to our Spring Drive today! Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Apparently: Dad in Drag

Sound & Vision's mini-series, Apparently, explores the stories of musicians and performers who are juggling parenthood with their art. Today we meet Reese Umbaugh, who's known on the drag stage as Cookie Couture. Cookie made headlines in 2019 for "Drag Queen Story Hour" at the Des Moines Public Library. Off the stage, Umbaugh mentors youth and has fostered 16 kids in the past decade. He is now the father of four adopted boys. KEXP is a listener-funded nonprofit, and we need your help to keep creating podcasts like this one. Donate to our Spring Drive today! Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Apparently: Grace Love Goes Solo

Sound & Vision is launching a new mini-series called Apparently where two new mothers, KEXP DJ Evie Stokes and KEXP Drive Time Producer Rachel Stevens introduce us to folks who are juggling being musicians and parents. Today we hear from Grace Love about her journey of becoming a solo artist and a single mother at the same time. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Tina Bell: Unsung Goddess of Grunge

Bam Bam was a Black woman-fronted grunge band in Seattle in the early 80s—before grunge was a defined genre. Larry Mizell Jr. tells the story of Bam Bam and the life of frontwoman Tina Bell. He also explores why we've never heard of this group before and why their story has been erased from Seattle music history. Then, KEXP Audioasis DJ and The Black Tones frontwoman Eva Walker leads a panel of fellow Black musicians to react to Bam Bam's music and story and discuss the landscape for Black rockers in Seattle's music scene today. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Adrian Younge Revises Black History

Adrian Younge is a multi-instrumentalist, composer and producer who has just released an album and a podcast for Black History Month. The album is called 'The American Negro' and the podcast is called 'Invisible Blackness.' The first track of the album, "Revisionist History," gets at the mission statement throughout the project: revising history to represent the real narratives around Black lives in America. Adrian Younge spoke to Sound & Vision about the stories of Black America not typically taught in the U.S. Listen to the 'Invisible Blackness' podcast here. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Kuti Family Continues Afrobeat Tradition

Femi and Made Kuti are the descendants of Fela Kuti—the pioneer of Afrobeat. They are carrying on the family tradition and have put out a double album together as father and son. They talk about their work, their family's music legacy and the issues of corruption and historical impacts of colonialism still felt in their home of Nigeria today. Support the show: https://www.kexp.org/sound/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.