Bryars' first major composition, The Sinking of the Titanic, still sounds as vital, fresh and forward-thinking as it did when it was written in 1969. The piece was performed in 2008 as part of the Wordless Music Series recorded by WNYC in New York City.
Gavin Bryars' 'The Sinking of the Titanic' in Performance 1/16/08
John Adams' early work Christian Zeal and Activity provides the hymn-like center of a musical triptych called American Standard. In a concert from the Wordless Music Series, recorded by WNYC, a string orchestra reverently performs the piece with "sonic found objects."
John Adams' 'Christian Zeal and Activity' in Performance 1/16/08
The Danish duo mixes '50s and '60s rock with harmonies inspired by The Everly Brothers and The Ronettes. But the band is no mere throwback, with an increasingly appealing and timeless rock catalog. Hear The Raveonettes perform a concert from WXPN and World Café Live in Philadelphia.
The Ravenonettes in Concert on Live Friday 3/28/08
With his ironic wordplay, deadpan delivery, and spiky guitar hooks, Malkmus helped make his former group Pavement one of the most influential rock acts of the '90s. Hear Malkmus and his backing band The Jicks, recorded live in concert from Washington, D.C.
Thielemans is the man who made the harmonica a jazz instrument. In a Brazilian-heavy set recorded at the 2005 Tanglewood Jazz Festival, he's joined by Oscar Castro-Neves, Airto, and pianist Kenny Werner. Now in his 80s, Thielemans still loves to play. Collaboration between WBGO and WGBH.
The violin concerto is a 300-year-old art form, and today's composers are still judged by how well they can combine a fiddle with an orchestra. Leila Josefowicz performs John Adams' 1993 concerto in concert with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra.
Hear Leila Josefowicz play Adams' concerto with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra
Southern singer Lizz Wright crafts a distinct mixture of jazz, folk, gospel, and R&B, but she's been most widely celebrated as a rising star in the jazz world. Hear Wright perform a concert from WXPN and World Café Live in Philadelphia.
Tokyo Police Club's party-starting mod-punk show up minus its heavy rhythms, in an acoustic version of "Tesselate." David Monks sits solo on The Current's stage, on the corner of 7th and Red River in Austin, for the SXSW festival.
Traveling from Noid, a small town in England, The Heavy creates a one-of-a-kind retro-soul sound that's heavy, dirty, and funky. Performing at the corner of 7th and Red River in Austin, Tex., the band plays "That Kind of Man" for a crowd at the South by Southwest Music Festival.
With the keyboardist literally running in from the street to play, The Weakerthans play SXSW. Four albums in, The Weakerthans' members are still making intelligent, punk-tinged pop music. The band's leader, John K. Samson, is a fiction writer disguised as a songwriter, crafting an impressive array of troubled wanderers and everyday Joes.
The solo virtuoso guitarist Kaki King is now supported by a full backing band. They played for the World Cafe Party at SXSW with The Weakerthans, Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin, Liam Finn and The Whigs on March 14.