Rhiannon Giddens is singer, songwriter, fiddler, and banjo maestro. And if that wasn't enough, you can see her flex her acting muscles on the TV show "Nashville." Her second solo album comes out this week Here she is with a playlist that mixes blues, opera, satire, and more.
Ian Simpson, better known by his stage name Kevin Abstract, is a Texas native won a diehard following online with a series of confessional hip-hop mixtapes. His new album "American Boyfriend: A Suburban Love Story" moves in a more pop direction and sees him both rapping and singing about never quite fitting in. Listen to him spin a time-hopping dinner party soundtrack featuring songs by Sunny Day Real Estate, Donell Jones and more.
Tinariwen are a group of blues-playing Tuareg musicians from the Sahara Desert region of northern Mali. The band had to flee their homeland due to political unrest and have recorded their last two albums at a studio in Joshua Tree California. The latest one is called "Elwan." It just came out. Here's a track from it called "Assawt."
Never shy about addressing current events, a couple weeks back indie-music giants Arcade Fire released a new song called "I Give You Power." It features rhythm and blues great Mavis Staples.
DJ Steve Aoki spins and mixes electro house music at massive parties from Las Vegas to Beijing. He collaborates with the biggest names in pop music, and a concert film about his work called "Steve Aoki: I'll Sleep When I'm Dead" is up for a Grammy this year. Check out his eclectic mix of songs by Bloc Party, Refused, and more.
Back in the '70s, Steve Jones and his band, Sex Pistols, lasted all of three years and put out a single album, but they helped turn punk from a fringe musical movement to a snarling, international phenomena and gave misfits everywhere anthems like, "Anarchy in the U.K." Before telling our audience how to behave in mosh pits, the musician stopped by to talk about why writing his autobiography felt like torture and explains his stance on the disputed origins of punk.
Natalie Mering makes gorgeous music under the name Weyes Blood and her new album has landed on a bunch of "Best of" lists for 2016. She serves up a soundtrack a few tracks from The Stranglers, Electric Light Orchestra's Roy Wood, and more to go with her tiny dinner party.
We revisit a song, recorded live at our show in New York last Spring, which we've never shared before. It's from one of our favorite folk-pop musicians, the aptly named Emmy the Great. She serenaded us with a cover of a Sandy Denny tune.
Musicians Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward help you celebrate the holidays with playlist picks to set the tone your next Yuletide gathering.