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Hear Andrew Limbong's remembrance of Stanley "Buckwheat" Dural Jr. at the audio link, and read on for an obituary written by Mark Mobley.

Stanley "Buckwheat" Dural Jr., an international ambassador for Louisiana roots music with his genre-leaping band Buckwheat Zydeco, died early Saturday morning. He was 68.

Kyle Craft On World Cafe

Sep 26, 2016

Kyle Craft's music encompasses a diverse set of influences. Originally from Shreveport, La., his voice carries southern cadences and his songs revolve around distinct characters and situations that could only be from that town by the Mississippi. But you also hear the influences of David Bowie, under whose spell Craft fell at a young age, and of Craft's adopted hometown of Portland, Ore.

They came, they measured, and they returned to perform a show like no other. It was the great NPR Tiny Desk Takeover by Blue Man Group.

If you've not seen this performance ensemble and their production in New York, Las Vegas, Orlando, Boston, Chicago or Berlin, then you've missed a night of magical fun. These Blue Men may never say a word, but the performances make for poignant looks at who we are as humans. They also make unusual music on instruments of their own design.

Metropolis: 9/24/16

Sep 26, 2016

This Week's Playlist

  • The Weeknd, "Starboy [feat. Daft Punk]" (Republic)
  • Glass Animals, "Youth" (Harvest)
  • Trentemoller, "My Conviction" (In My Room)
  • Phantogram, "Run Run Blood" (Republic)
  • D.D Dumbo, "Walrus" (4AD)
  • The Seshen, "Distant Heart" (Tru Thoughts)
  • Janet Jackson, "Pleasure Principle [Classixx Recovery Mix]" (Virgin)
  • Gigamesh, "I'd Do It Again [feat. Gavin Turek]" (Our Label International)

The political endorsement song is a strange beast. It's something more than just a campaign anthem — the kind of track that pumps up rally audiences before a candidate's entrance onstage. Instead, this kind of tune is an odd hybrid: part commercial jingle, part aspirational anthem and, with nearly no exceptions, a soon-forgotten novelty. (One outlier: the sturdy Whig song "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too" from the 1840 presidential campaign, which was most recently resurrected by They Might Be Giants in 2004.)

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

(SOUNDBITE OF BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN SONG, "BORN IN THE U.S.A.")

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

The founder of Rolling Stone is selling a minority share of the fabled magazine to a Singapore-based social media entrepreneur, the first time an outside investor has been allowed to buy into the property.

Several media reports say Jann Wenner has decided to sell 49 percent of the magazine, as well as its digital assets, to BandLab Technologies, a social-networking site for musicians and fans.

It makes sense that Y La Bamba's latest album, Ojos Del Sol, is a bilingual journey through cultures and genres. After all, the project comes from frontwoman Luz Elena Mendoza, who carries her multiple identities with pride.

Like Sam Cooke, Donny Hathaway and Marvin Gaye, Anthony Hamilton began his path to soul stardom in the front of a church. Before his gold and platinum albums, before songs like "Charlene" and "The Point of it All" and this year's "Amen," Hamilton first sang in the choir of Charlotte, N.C.'s New Shiloh Baptist Church.

Bob Boilen, the host of NPR Music's All Songs Considered podcast, sits down with John Paul White, formerly half of the Civil Wars, to discuss songs that changed the songwriter's life. The conversation takes place at the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, and is part of AmericanaFest 2016.

Dirty Projectors' early career opened a virtual fire hydrant of ideas: albums overstuffed with sound and chaos, reined in by real artistry, released in rapid succession. But as bandleader David Longstreth honed his vision, the hydrant's flow has given way to a trickle. It's been more than four years since the last new Dirty Projectors album, Swing Lo Magellan, and Longstreth himself has stayed largely out of the public eye.

Most breakup songs are definitive post-mortems, allowing the performer to take a clear position on either side of the line between spurner and spurned — a final full stop that rarely mirrors real life. But in the songs of the Melbourne, Australia, band Jaala, different realities are allowed to coexist, the push-and-pull as evident in frontwoman and songwriter Cosima Jaala's textured voice as in the group's erratic style. On "Junior Spirit," an early taste of Jaala's in-progress second album, she attempts and fails to leave someone.

Hip-hop artist Amisho Baraka, who performs as Sho Baraka, is one African-American man who feels left out by both major political parties — and he says this will affect his vote come November.

Rachael Yamagata On Mountain Stage

Sep 22, 2016

Rachael Yamagata returns to Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W.Va. Before doubling down on a career as a musician, Yamagata studied French at Northwestern University and Italian theater at Vassar College. Upon relocating to Illinois, she spent a half-decade as the vocalist for the popular Chicago funk-fusion band Bumpus.

Tomorrow, two final works from composer James Horner will reach American ears: a concert piece being released on CD, and his score for the remake of the Western adventure The Magnificent Seven. The composer died a little more than a year ago in a plane crash, after creating more than 100 film scores over nearly 40 years.

The long, hot summer comes to an end today — according to the calendar, at least — and here at World Cafe, we're beginning to get into the spirit of the changing seasons. Feeling the autumnal vibes, we've selected some of our favorite songs that reflect the transition to the cooler days of fall.

Listen below for season-appropriate songs by Joanna Newsom, Simon & Garfunkel, Yo La Tengo and more.

For Glass Animals, the concept of the "sophomore slump" doesn't apply — a point that becomes abundantly clear when listening to How To Be A Human Being. The new album was recorded in less than two months and based on stories that frontman Dave Bayley heard from people he'd met while touring the world. "Life Itself" is a standout.

SET LIST

  • "Life Itself"

NPR's Tiny Desk series documents one-of-a-kind performances, allowing for an intimate look at musicians — some well-known, others just starting out — as they make music behind Bob Boilen's desk in the NPR Music offices.

In 2009, musician and historian Elijah Wald published an overview of American pop from the 1890s to the 1960s he called How the Beatles Destroyed Rock 'n' Roll. The title was a bomb-throwing feint — as Wald told me in an interview, he knew that title would get much more attention than a drier one such as "American Pop From Sousa to Soul" — and as if on cue, one reviewer after another lined up to wave away its thesis.

In the music of Alcest, beauty reigns above all. Even in the French band's early days playing gauzy black-metal, attention was paid to the curves of song and sound. From 2014, Shelter departed completely from Alcest's metallic roots for shoegaze, a conscious move on mastermind Neige's part that, while pretty, was airy in its noticeable lack of heft.

Life is like an endless forest lined with many paths, each leading to an entirely different experience. But what happens if you leave the path altogether?

They came, they measured, they built and they plotted. But first, they had to borrow a few things from the NPR office.

Blue Man Group designed new instruments and a small-scale show solely for a one-time performance at the Tiny Desk. Celebrate the group's 25th anniversary with this musical and comical adventure, which you can watch this Monday, Sept. 26, at npr.org/tinydesk.

With nearly seven decades in the rearview mirror and some of the finest songs in the English language under his belt, John Prine can do whatever tickles his fancy. As septuagenarian status looms, the celebrated singer-songwriter's muse has moved him to release an album of country duets.

Dizzy Gillespie once described Charlie Parker as the other half of his heartbeat. They were young men creating something from whole cloth, stretching the limits of their creativity and intellect every time they drew a breath together on the bandstand.

If Jenny Hval's music is the bramble, her message is the Disney castle nestled (or, depending on perspective, trapped) inside. The experimental singer-songwriter surrounds her vulnerable voice and razor's edge lyrics with spiky, disarming instrumentation and production that work to both belie and bolster the intensity and intimacy of her work. Blood Bitch, Hval's sixth album, is her first that offers a sword for cutting through the thorns.

Drive-By Truckers has always been a political band.

First Listen: Pixies, 'Head Carrier'

Sep 22, 2016

When the Pixies re-formed in 2004, expectations were high. As a live act, frontman Black Francis and crew — guitarist Joey Santiago, bassist Kim Deal and drummer David Lovering — more than delivered. But 10 years later, when the legendary band finally got around to releasing its comeback album, Indie Cindy, things didn't go so well. Largely lackluster and missing bassist-singer Kim Deal, who had just quit the group, Indie Cindy was a ding on the Pixies' otherwise spotless discography.

Violence against women is no modern tragedy. Composer John Adams found that out when he saw an exhibition about the tales of the Arabian Nights — ancient stories in which Scheherazade tells her murderous husband a new tantalizing tale each night for 1001 nights, thus sparing her life a day at a time. The composer, writing in Scheherazade.2's booklet notes, says he was surprised by how many of the stories included women suffering brutality.

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