Music

Cindy Hill / GPB

Think Christmas music and there are sounds that probably jump to mind. 

There's Bing Crosby, Vince Guaraldi, maybe Handel's "Messiah." Well, as it turns out, one of the oldest African-American musical traditions is also tied to Christmas.

That's the Ring Shout, still performed by the Geechee and Gullah people of the Georgia and South Carolina coast.

Don't know the Shout? Meet the McIntosh County Ring Shouters. We caught up with them introducing their music to children at a recent Savannah Music Festival Musical Explorers concert.  

Dust To Digital

Gospel musician Washington Phillips has been shrouded in mystery for decades. The Texas-based artist recorded only 18 songs in the 1920s, which were lost to obscurity until recently. Atlanta-based Dust-to-Digital revived his music into a new collection called “Washington Phillips and His Manzarene Dreams.” That release was nominated for a Grammy Award. 

Christmas is the one holiday of the year that has the most music associated with it. Sometimes that’s a good thing. And sometimes it’s a bad thing. We wanted to get a good list of the best songs and the songs to avoid over the holidays, so we talked Chester Phillips, the director of athletic bands at Georgia State University.

Every year, the online magazine The Bitter Southerner picks its favorite Southern albums of the year. We listened to some of the featured tracks with Chuck Reece, the magazine’s editor-in-chief and co-founder. He recently compiled his list for the magazine.

Grant Blankenship / GPB


Odds are good you have never heard of Emmett Miller. Not too long ago, neither had Ben Arthur.

A New Era Of Jazz Under Kamasi Washington

Dec 6, 2017
Kamasi Washington

Kamasi Washington is one of most active and innovative jazz musicians alive today. The saxophonist/composer has performed with and recorded for a diverse group of artists--including Lauryn Hill, Herbie Hancock, Flying Lotus, and Kendrick Lamar.

AllMusic

"Happy birthday!" to one of Georgia’s most iconic musicians. Little Richard was born in Macon on December 5, 1932. He grew up singing gospel in the Pentecostal church. His big break came in September of 1955, when he recorded “Tutti Fruitti.” His style influenced countless musicians, including Kate Pierson of the B-52s. She recently nominated “Tutti Fruitti” for our Georgia Playlist. We’ll hear why it tops her list of essential Georgia listening.

Georgia Playlist: Lingua Franca

Dec 1, 2017
Lingua Franca

We add two more songs to our Georgia Playlist. Mariah Parker, better known by her moniker Lingua Franca, is an Athens-based hip hop artist. She’s performs at The Bakery in Atlanta this Saturday, at The World Famous in Athens next Tuesday, and at Fresh Produce Records in Macon next Wednesday. Parker brings us tunes by Of Montreal and Andre 3000.

Author Angie Thomas: TLC Saved My Life

Nov 29, 2017
Anissa Hidouk

Angie Thomas, author of the bestselling Young Adult book, "The Hate U Give," grew up a TLC fanatic. But after dealing with serious bullying, she used TLC’s music — specifically the late Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes's words — to support her.

 

Vicki Love / flickr

We were joined by singer Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins, who is a member of TLC. She grew up in Atlanta, and has a new memoir out. T-Boz shared her experience living with an incurable disease, and she talked about why it is important for her to remain authentic as her career evolves.

We added two more songs to our Georgia Playlist, courtesy of Atlanta violinist Ken Ford. There’s an electricity present whenever he starts playing. Ford has performed with the likes of Bruno Mars, Stevie Wonder, Cee Lo Green, and many others. He gave us a glimpse of his taste in Georgia music with songs by India.Arie and OutKast. 

Ken Ford has two shows Friday, November 24 at Atlanta’s Center Stage at 7 p.m. and 11 p.m.

Takénobu

Atlanta cellist Nick Ogawa, better known as "Takénobu," takes the cello beyond the orchestra. His latest album, “Reversal,” uses loops and percussive sounds to create thick soundscapes. We catch up with Takénobu ahead of a performance at Eddie’s Attic in Decatur this Sunday, November 19. 

R.E.M.

R.E.M.’s hit record “Automatic for the People” was released 25 years ago. In 1992, the album hit #2 on the Billboard 200 charts, and became certified 4x platinum in the United States. The record is getting an anniversary re-release, out tomorrow, November 10. We talk with Athens’ own Mike Mills, R.E.M.’s bass player.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of R.E.M.'s iconic album, "Automatic for the People." We asked R.E.M mega-fan and Athens-based music reviewer Jordan Stepp to share an appreciation of the album. She talked about two of her favorite tracks: "Drive" and "Sweetness Follows." 

Keeping The Legacy Of Athens Music Alive

Nov 8, 2017

The Athens music scene is legendary and always booming. Since it became famous for launching bands like R.E.M., the B-52s, and countless others, it has only grown in the number of bands, talent, and musical quality. Some Athenians are documenting the music and history of that town's scene. 

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