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When Beyoncé included the country-dipped song "Daddy Issues" on Lemonade, some seemed surprised — which was weird. Queen Bey is from Houston, where (as in most of the South) the word "country" is sometimes thrown around as an insult meaning "unsophisticated." And her song, with its street-corner beat and hot guitar, reminded listeners that rootsy music has its own kind of elegance.

Amanda Sudano and Abner Ramirez met as a songwriting team in Nashville, only to move to L.A., get married and have a baby. Those may scan as simple biographical details, but every one of them is reflected in the music the two make together under the name Johnnyswim. Their sparkly pop songs exude L.A.

Philadelphia's Purling Hiss is now eight idiosyncratic albums into a remarkable career, and the new High Bias moves freely in tandem with the psychedelic, jam-oriented early works of bandleader Mike Polizze — as well as the unwashed, long-haired pop strum of 2009's Public Service Announcement and 2014's Weirdon. It also doubles down on the grungy, mainstream aspirations of 2013's Water On Mars, taking that album's cleaned-up aesthetics and pushing them into prismatic near-detachment.

Rod Temperton has been called pop music's "Invisible Man" because few knew his name. But his songs were megahits in the 1970s and 80s. Along with big hair, wide lapels and bell bottoms, his music helped define the disco era. Temperton died of cancer last week in London, according to a statement from his publisher. He was 66.

The East River Ferry is one of the more whimsical ways for New Yorkers to commute, but it retains its claim to practicality with one key characteristic: It is a very fast boat. So it was that Local Natives came hurtling toward our crew up the river one overcast evening this summer, shouting three-part harmonies over roaring engines for a surprised clutch of fans. When the ferry docked, three of the band's members hurried over to our pier off WNYC Transmitter Park to play this Field Recording.

Weaves On World Cafe

Oct 5, 2016

The Toronto art-rock quartet Weaves released its self-titled debut album this past summer. It's filled with quirky, angular melodies; lead singer Jasmyn Burke's rhythmic, deadpan delivery; and an enervating sense that things could fall apart at any moment. Along with Burke, the band includes guitarist Morgan Waters, drummer Spencer Cole and bassist Zach Bines.

Grimes surprised fans today with seven new videos, including four songs from her most recent album, Art Angels, and three tracks from her friend and collaborator HANA's self-titled EP. In a series of Tweets, Grimes says she, HANA and Grimes' brother Mac Boucher shot the videos guerrilla-style over a two-week period while traveling through Europe. "There was no crew, makeup, cameras, lights," Grimes says.

The Thistle & Shamrock: More New Sounds

Oct 5, 2016

Host Fiona Ritchie handpicks highlights from an impressive crop of new releases by rising and well-established artists. Hear new music by Socks In The Frying Pan, Hamish Napier, Gillian Frame and more.

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

In this concert, filmed at OPB in Portland, Ore., the long-running rock band Drive-By Truckers performs its timely and politically charged new record, American Band, in its entirety.

As a young musician coming up in the early 1970s, Bruce Springsteen played in the bars of Asbury Park, N.J., a hardscrabble urban beach town full of colorful characters. The town fired his imagination and inspired him musically, but still he found himself longing for more.

Springsteen tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross that he knew that if he was ever going to make his mark on the larger world, it would be through his words.

Leftover Salmon On Mountain Stage

Oct 5, 2016

Leftover Salmon returns to Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W.Va. The band formed in 1989, and its unique blend of country, bluegrass and Cajun music (combined with years of hard work and touring) has made it a beloved act on America's summer-festival circuit and beyond.

The latest video from Radiohead is a field recording of Jonny Greenwood and Thom Yorke performing "The Numbers," from the band's latest album A Moon Shaped Pool. It's remarkable what they can do with two guitars and a drum machine; the duo basically strip away the song's original studio effects, percussion and piano.

Do you ever want to hear another rock guitar solo again? That's where the fight began. Robin played a song with a lot of guitar wankery by the band Major Stars. He loved it and I frankly couldn't wait for it to end. It got me wondering: Is this sort of music even relevant in 2016?

You will know her by the golden fishes she wears in her ears. You know will know him by the elephant ring on his finger. Both are covered in blood, attached by a length of string that's only to be broken by one last dance. In a new video, Khruangbin's soulful, breezy "Two Fish And An Elephant" becomes a wordless short film inspired by the likes of Quentin Tarantino and Hayao Miyazaki.

Kaia Kater On World Cafe

Oct 4, 2016

Canadian banjo player and songwriter Kaia Kater draws on the influences of both Canadian folk music and her Afro-Caribbean roots. In this session, Kater discusses her multicultural influences and what it was like to grow up playing an instrument that might not have been the coolest. She also talks about the difference in sound between her debut and her latest album, Nine Pin, and performs songs from each.

Soul singer Charles Bradley is battling stomach cancer and has canceled several tour dates, according to a statement posted on his official Facebook page Tuesday.

The 67-year-old singer issued a statement saying he's determined to come back stronger:

"I'm getting the best medical care and we are all extremely optimistic. I will fight through this like I've fought through the many other obstacles in my life.

Wayne Henderson is a renowned acoustic guitarist who has played at Carnegie Hall, been honored at the White House and toured internationally. He's also an acclaimed instrument maker who has built guitars for the likes of Eric Clapton and his own close friend, the late Doc Watson. For the past five years, Henderson has shared his studio — and his trade — with an up-and-coming luthier: his daughter, Jayne.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

The rock band Drive-By Truckers has been making music for 20 years now, and for most of that time, the group, which is from Athens, Ga., has explored the meaning of Southern identity. That happened on albums like "The Dirty South" and "Southern Rock Opera."

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

Fan fervor is one of the basic building blocks of rock and roll, but it's difficult to recall a rock star as tenderly beloved as is Bruce Springsteen in 2016. There are bigger legends who've evinced louder screams, like the baby boomer Boss's own early inspirations, Elvis and The Beatles.

We've never done a Tiny Desk Concert that wasn't behind my desk at NPR. But when the White House called and said they were putting on an event called South by South Lawn, a day-long festival filled with innovators and creators from the worlds of technology and art, including music, we jumped at the chance to get involved. We chose Common as the performer and the White House library as the space.

Love is elusive and innocence lost in a new video from The Dandy Warhols, for the band's idiosyncratic pop song "Catcher In The Rye." Like the song's namesake novel, the video opens on a sullen Holden Caulfield character, complete with a red hunting cap and a suitcase in hand, smoking and strolling aimlessly down the sidewalk. A young woman on the other side of the street catches his eye and, after they exchange a few glances, he takes off running with the young woman in pursuit.

"I think that the Rite is a symbol of the beginning of life," conductor Gustavo Dudamel told NPR in 2012, speaking about Igor Stravinsky's rambunctious Rite of Spring. "It's still so modern," he said. "For me, that's the secret of the piece."

Metropolis: 10/1/16

Oct 3, 2016

This Week's Playlist

  • Gorgon City, "Smile" (Capitol)
  • Kauf, "Key To Life" (Self-Released)
  • Gigamesh, "I'd Do It Again [feat. Gavin Turek]" (Our Label International)
  • Hamza, "Dazzle On" (Promo)
  • Rich Fayden, "Lady [Mashup]" (Promo)
  • Cookin' On 3 Burners, "Mind Made Up (Lenno vs. Cookin' On 3 Burners) [Club Mix]" (Promo)
  • Latroit, "Everything Is Beautiful" (House Of Latroit)
  • Blackgummy, "Incoming" (Mau5trap)

Regina Spektor's family — Russian Jews from Moscow — left the former Soviet Union for the U.S. in 1989, when Spektor was 9. They settled in the Bronx, where her dad, despite their financial struggles, managed to secure his daughter a piano teacher so she could keep playing her favorite instrument.

case/lang/veirs On World Cafe

Oct 3, 2016

The supergroup case/lang/veirs comprises singer-songwriters Neko Case, k.d. lang and Laura Veirs. Each is a well-established artist in the world of folk and alt-country in her own right, and their individual styles all emerge on their first, self-titled album, produced by Veirs' husband, Tucker Martine.

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

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Fourteen hours ago, Jenny Hval was mashing watermelon and confetti into the compact stage at the Oslo club Vulkan. Now the Norwegian artist is struggling to transition into a more rarified mode. The 36-year-old is hiding from the sticky mid-September sun in her studio in gentrifying Grünerløkka, rehearsing — this weekend she'll form part of a choir backing homegrown superstar Susanne Sundfør at the 8,700-capacity Spektrum arena. "I'm bad at singing in choirs," Hval says, sitting on an old wooden chair and clutching each foot to the opposite hip, knees pointing forward like an arrow.

With both Mazzy Star and her band The Warm Inventions, singer Hope Sandoval has helped perfect an impeccably shimmering sound that's ideally suited to her gorgeous, approachable voice.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

(SOUNDBITE OF MILES DAVIS' "SOLAR")

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is the Miles Davis tune from the 1950s called "Solar" - found its way into a surprising new context for an artist who's created some intriguing mashups of pop, jazz and classical music.

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