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2010 Stories by Rick Mason

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  • Meklit Hadero

    published September 15, 2010

    Friday's finale of the Cedar's Global Roots Festival will feature a pair of U.S.-based artists with African roots. San Francisco singer/songwriter... More >>

  • Laura Veirs & the Hall of Flames

    published September 15, 2010

    Playing music flushed with the sweet haze of midsummer—nature at its ripest—amid the bleakness of a Minnesota winter is what... More >>

  • John Prine

    published September 15, 2010

    If John Prine had never released another album after the now-classic pair that kicked off his career in the early 1970s, contemporary artists... More >>

  • Joe Sample & the Jazz Crusaders

    published September 8, 2010

    Originating in a Houston high-school marching band in the 1950s, the Jazz Crusaders came up with an innovative blend of hard bop and Texas R&B,... More >>

  • Railroad Earth

    published September 8, 2010

    Fundamentally a bluegrass band from an unlikely origin (New Jersey, the blacktopgrass state?), Railroad Earth long has stretched its bounds much... More >>

  • Mahalai Rai Banda

    published September 8, 2010

    With an album called Ghetto Blaster and a track placed in a major motion picture, you'd expect a band of... hyperactive Romanian Gypsies?... More >>

  • Esperanza Spalding Chamber Music Society

    published September 8, 2010

    Already hailed as a phenomenon at the ripe old age of 24, and with only a single domestic album to her credit, Esperanza Spalding continues... More >>

  • Flaming Lips

    published September 8, 2010

    The long, strange trip of Oklahoma psychedelic troopers the Flaming Lips appears to have reached a fresh threshold with the nearly concurrent... More >>

  • Dan Hicks & the Hot Licks

    published September 8, 2010

    They don't make 'em like Dan Hicks anymore. Never did really. A genuine anomaly, Hicks essentially could have stepped from the pages of an R.... More >>

  • Texas Tornados

    published September 8, 2010

    The quintessential Tex-Mex band is a super-group whose members—individually and collectively—had significant influences on multiple... More >>

  • Efterklang

    published September 1, 2010

    The highly regarded Danish chamber pop quartet Efterklang reportedly presents mesmerizing live performances of its sweeping, exquisitely textured... More >>

  • Cowboy Mouth

    published September 1, 2010

    The New Orleans quartet Cowboy Mouth claims lofty origins, proclaiming that the term adopted for its name was used by Shakespeare (Will... More >>

  • Turtle Island Quartet

    published September 1, 2010

    Around the time they were tackling the monumental legacy of John Coltrane's A Love Supreme in 2007, the Turtle Islanders dropped the... More >>

  • Crooked Still

    published September 1, 2010

    Although Crooked Still's material is predominantly traditional, the quintet's potent arrangements are so ingenious, so fresh, and played with such... More >>

  • Crowded House

    published August 25, 2010

    The lineage of New Zealand's Finn clan as perfect pure pop purveyors can be traced back to Split Enz, which was launched in the early '70s by Tim... More >>

  • Carolina Chocolate Drops

    published August 18, 2010

    Resurrecting the nearly buried and forgotten African-American string-band tradition—specifically of the Carolinas' Piedmont... More >>

  • Dave Alvin & the Guilty Women

    published August 18, 2010

    A first-rate songwriter and guitarist, Dave Alvin was a pioneer of the Americana movement as a member of the Blasters before launching a solo... More >>

  • Los Hombres Calientes

    published August 11, 2010

    The brilliant concept of Los Hombres Calientes was no less than essentially tracing the rhythms of the African diaspora from the North American... More >>

  • Dr. John & the Lower 911

    published August 4, 2010

    Night trippin' for near about a half-century now, Mac Rebennack, in his guise as the gris-gris totin' Dr. John, has been puttin' a serious hoit... More >>

  • Rufus Wainwright

    published August 4, 2010

    Throughout his career, Rufus Wainwright has flirted with cabaret, art song, the lush frontiers of pop, vintage crooning, even opera. Wainwright... More >>

  • George Throrogood & the Destroyers

    published August 4, 2010

    When a friend of mine discovered George Thorogood and his ferocious takes on vintage rock and blues nuggets, probably round about 1982's Bad... More >>

  • Bettye LaVette

    published July 28, 2010

    When R&B diva Bettye LaVette finishes off her aching, soul-drenched version of Paul McCartney's "Maybe I'm Amazed" on her latest album, it's... More >>

  • Red House Barnfest

    published July 28, 2010

    Red House, the St. Paul indie folk label, knows how to put on a summer jam. Among the highlights of Red House's early days was its annual... More >>

  • Balkan Beat Box

    published July 28, 2010

    Although the band is based in New York, with a commensurate cutting-edge/punkish attitude attendant to the downtown scene, Balkan Beat Box's heart... More >>

  • Jimmy Cliff

    published July 28, 2010

    After being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in March, reggae pioneer Jimmy Cliff has launched his most ambitious North American... More >>

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