Divine Fits' pedigree jumps out straight away: The band features Spoon's Britt Daniel, Dan Boeckner of Wolf Parade and Handsome Furs, and New Bomb Turks' Sam Brown. Daniel and Boeckner met a few years ago when Daniel attended a Handsome Furs concert, and the two have remained friends ever since.
Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 2:16 pm
Polaris Prize-winning singer-songwriter Patrick Watson makes music the way some directors make film: in three dimensions and with lots of emotion. With the aid of guitarist Simon Angell, percussionist Robbie Kuster and bassist Mishka Stein, Watson crafts songs that are experimental in nature, blending cabaret-style pop with classical and indie-rock music.
Originally published on Thu October 11, 2012 1:18 pm
The 11-member group from Boston known as Debo Band has a sound influenced by the traditional music played in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in the late '60s and early '70s. This style, labeled "Addis swing," came about amid the cultural freedom of that period, before a military coup put an end to the era. Ethiopian-American saxophonist Danny Mekonnen, who was born in Sudan and grew up in Texas, founded Debo Band, which released a self-titled album in July.
Originally published on Wed February 20, 2013 12:41 pm
Field Report founder and frontman Chris Porterfield assumed his music career was over after he left the Wisconsin band DeYarmond Edison, which also featured Justin Vernon of Bon Iver and several current members of Megafaun. Following the band's 2006 breakup, Porterfield started writing music for the first time, taking years to hone his skills.
Originally published on Mon November 5, 2012 2:13 pm
Until this week, it had been six years since Beth Orton released an album. In 1993, a chance meeting with Grammy-winning producer William Orbit led to the creation of her debut album, Trailer Park, as well as collaborations throughout the '90s with the likes of The Chemical Brothers. Her music was widely praised and dubbed "folktronica" — a blend of folk and electronic music.
Chicago-based journalist Catalina Maria Johnson hosts the 15th installment of World Cafe's Latin Roots music series. Johnson writes in Spanish and English for publications such as HOY, Revista Contratiempo, Gozamos and Nat Geo Music, and is a radio personality and host/producer for the radio program Beat Latino, which airs in Chicago, Mexico City and Berlin.
Originally published on Mon October 15, 2012 11:38 am
David Wax Museum fuses traditional Mexican and American folk music into what the band calls "Mexo-Americana" — a style that's lively and unique. David Wax and Suz Slezak, the band's core members, met in Boston in 2007. After spending summers working with Quakers in rural Mexico, Wax spent a graduate fellowship year studying the local music of Mexico.
Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 9:01 am
Singer-songwriter Iris DeMent was born the youngest child of a large Pentecostal family in rural Arkansas, and later moved to Southern California. DeMent grew up listening to traditional country and gospel music, which influenced her roots-folk sound, though she was 25 when she wrote her first song. It would take another five years for her to release her first album, Infamous Angel.