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Posts Tagged ‘music’

A Conversation with Welcome Wagon’s Vito Aiuto, Part 1

By Mary McCampbellAugust 8, 2018

After years of holding intimate hymn-singing gatherings in their living room, Reverend Vito and Monique Aiuto released Welcome to the Welcome Wagon in 2008; the homespun album was produced by Sufjan Stevens and put out by Stevens’s own Asthmatic Kitty records. The Aiutos, accompanied by Stevens and other friends, called themselves The Welcome Wagon—and their…

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Training the Ear of My Heart

By Elizabeth DuffyMarch 27, 2018

I don’t live a very active life, though observers might deduce that I am always late, leaping over railroad tracks in my early millennium Honda pilot to get to a pickup before my kids notice my absence. It benefits me to preserve the appearance of a harried, overbooked mother of a large family, because it…

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Poetry Friday: “Being the Song”

By Jeff GundyMarch 23, 2018

If you write poetry, odds are you don’t expect your work to achieve acclaim like that of a Robert Frost or a Mary Oliver. You consider yourself most fortunate if, now and then, you find a publisher and an audience who connect with your sensibility. There are moments, many of them, when you question why…

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Poetry Friday: “The Music before the Music”

By Jeanne Murray WalkerJanuary 19, 2018

It is often hard to find the language to describe the sounds and impact of a piece of music. In “The Music before the Music” we encounter horns that “plow and plant Beethoven’s/great fields,” “the brash cymbal,” “the wigged-out chug of a bass viol.” In this loud and layered poem, Jeanne Murray Walker uses precisely…

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Listening to My Life: 17 Listens for 2017

By Joel Heng HartseDecember 29, 2017

First, a note: I think this might be the last time I do this. If you’ve followed my writing about music for the last twenty years (in which case you are my mother, so thanks) you’ve heard me say things like this off and on for at least the last ten, so I don’t mean…

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Still on the Line

By A.G. HarmonSeptember 7, 2017

I will not claim credit for many things, but one virtue I own is that you can’t make me disloyal to that which I’ve grown attached. Even in my youth, when it was very important to me that I like what everyone else liked, I would not detach myself from that to which I had…

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Dark Forest on Fire

By Natalie VestinSeptember 5, 2017

“We’ve got five years, that’s all we’ve got,” sang Ziggy Stardust forty-five years ago. Did people feel a prickling in 1977, as if Bowie might be prophet? It’s not so hard to believe. Do people ever forget to fear burning to death once they’ve imagined burning in their beds, under their desks, in their basements?…

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Guns N’ Roses in This Lifetime

By Bryan BlissAugust 10, 2017

The first time I encountered Guns N’ Roses, it was a flag hanging on the bedroom wall of a kid I barely knew. You’ve likely seen the image—a cross, adorned with representative skulls for each member of the band. I hadn’t heard Appetite for Destruction at that point, but I knew this was something to…

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A Prayer for Kendrick Lamar

By Nick OlsonJune 15, 2017

It occurs to me each time I listen to Kendrick Lamar’s new album, Damn: The award winning and much celebrated rapper laments over and over that he feels like nobody’s praying for him. It’s his greatest fear. I’m not sure you can listen casually to a Lamar album. Each song demands attention to every word.…

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Sufjan Stevens’ Planetarium in Paradise

By Adam Tyler HornJune 9, 2017

When Dante finally sees Beatrice near the end of the Purgatorio, he quotes Virgil’s Aeneid in the presence of his guide, Virgil himself. “I know the signs of that ancient flame,” he exclaims, transforming Dido’s doomed hailing of Aeneas into a renewed celebration of Beatrice as Beatitude, as icon of God instead of fetishized lost…

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