“They Say It’s Your Birthday” Paul MacCartney

1475659-paul-mccartney-617-409Beatles legend Sir Paul MacCartney may be 71 today – but that doesn’t stop him from leaving the crowd at Bonnaroo speechless with a near three hour set this past weekend.

It should be no surprise that the iconic musician is still owning the stage, traveling the world on his ‘Out There’ tour, playing sold out shows and surprising audiences with impeccable sets, new material, and even surprise classics like “Eight Days a Week”, which he performed for the first time since 1965 with the Beatles.

This is Paul MacCartney we are talking about – we expect nothing less.

Many celebrities and fans took to social media to wish Paul a very Happy Birthday today, including  the other surviving Beatle Ringo Starr and Yoko Ono.

Slacker would also like to wish Paul a very happy birthday today. Celebrate with us as we listen to Slacker’s Paul MacCartney station, pretend to be legendary rock stars and long for the day we can be as cool as the coolest cat in music.

 

 

Artist of the Week Sigur Rós Release New Album

Sigur RosThis week Iceland’s Sigur Rós released their seventh album of ambient, ethereal post-rock—an album that they describe as “more aggressive” than their previous records.

Whereas their previous material was whimsical, optimistic, and even child-like in nature, this new album finds the band doing what they do best—creating cinematic, atmospheric soundscapes—it’s just that these soundscapes are more direct, darker, and in some cases, even have a pop sensibility to them.

On this weeks Artist of the Week station we take a look at the musical DNA of Sigur Rós – from their forebearers like Brian Eno and Cocteau Twins, fellow Icelanders like Bjork and mum, kindred spirits like Boards of Canada and The Album Leaf, and their side projects and collaborations.

Check out Sigur Rós as Slacker’s Artist of the Week here and take a look at the video for their new single below.

 

youtu.be/EG2N7euPXuc

New Music: We Love Grouplove

Grouplove-472x472There is an early contender for this year’s summer anthem–and it comes to us from Grouplove.

After breaking out in 2011 with songs like “Tongue Tied” and ‘Colours”, nabbing a few soundtrack spots in hit TV shows like “Don’t Say Oh Well” in Vampire Diaries, they are back with the first single from their new record, “Spreading Rumours,” which drops on September 17.

Hear “Ways To Go” and more future-hits on Slacker;s New Alternative First and keep an eye out for more from Grouplove because we are hooked!

 

 

New Series “I Am the DJ” Debuts with Counting Crows

DJ-COUNTING-CROWS-472x472There is nothing better than personal music recommendations from people you trust- unless of course that person happens to be a famous musician.

Our new series “I Am the DJ” gives a glimpse into the music collection of some of our favorite artists as they showcase their favorite songs, biggest influences and specialized playlists. To debut the series, Slacker sat down with Counting Crows frontman Adam Duritz to build an entire radio station comprised of his favorite songs.

Adam put together an audio journey through his influences and the emerging acts that he so passionately embraces on his Outlaw Roadshow project.  From Phoenix and Delta Kids to Pixies classics and even Naughty by Nature – the station is, much like Adam, an eclectic mix of various styles that mesh together perfectly.

Head over to   “I Am the DJ: Counting Crows” on Slacker and stay tuned for more artists coming soon!

 

The Lonely Island Bring Comedy to Artist of the Week

LONELY-ISLAND-472x472This week, self-described “frappers” The Lonely Island release their second album of what can best be described as “comedy-rap”. Akiva, Jorma, and Andy have produced an album as crass, taboo, and hilarious as you might imagine- featuring songs like “Diaper Money”, “Spring Break Anthem”, “YOLO”- which was featured as a digital short on SNL, and other tracks with titles I can’t repeat here.

Guest contributors include Justin Timberlake, Adam Levine, Lady Gaga, Kendrick Lamar, Pharrell Williams, and Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong.

On this station you’ll hear the comedic lineage of the Lonely Island- from influences like Adam Sandler and Monty Python to their comedy brethren like Tenacious D and Flight of the Conchords. You’ll also hear tracks from the stars that have been good enough sports to appear on their albums and videos—like Justin Timberlake, Akon, and even Michael Bolton. The Lonely Island is Slacker’s Artist of the Week.

World Music Festivals Take on the Summer

Desert Blues, Latin Alternative, Gypsy Funk, Arabic,  Brazilian, Afro-pop, Asian, Celtic and a lot more is on tap as festivals, music series and historic tours roll out for Summer 2013.  Here’s a taste of what is in store for the year.

Festivals and Music Series

Maracatu Naçáo Estrela BrilhanteA bunch of summer fests and music series that feature World Music have announced their line-ups.  And there is a LOT to choose from, whether you are into trad, cutting edge, cross-cultural fusions or world DJ culture & dance.  So get out there, some are even FREE!  Here’s just a sampling.

California World Fest 

Celebrate Brooklyn

Grand Performances Los Angeles

Lincoln Center Midsummer Night Swing 

Lincoln Center Out Of Doors 

Rhythm Foundation Miami

Sierra Nevada World Music Festival 

Smithsonian Folklife Festival 

Stern Grove Festival San Francisco 

Ukelele Festival Hawaii 

 

Tours

There are some major – and historic – tours coming this summer too.  Be on the lookout for these and more:

A Tale of Two Nations featuring Maracatu Nação Estrela Brilhante and Nation Beat. This historic tour not only pairs one of the oldest traditional maracatu groups from Brazil with a contemporary Brooklyn-Brazil cross-cultural mash-up, but it is the first time a trad maracatu group from Brazil has ever toured North America! Thiscarnaval is not to be missed.  August.

Festival au Desert_Caravan For Peace TourFestival au Desert: Caravan of Peace featuring Mali’s Mamadou Kelly & The Ali Farka Touré AllstarsTartit, and Imharhan.  Another historic tour and one with a message and the hope of keeping Timbuktu’s legendary Festival au Desert alive, which has been canceled due to Mali’s tumultuous civil war.  “Until the music can return to its roots with freedom of expression and dignity, the Festival au Desert has become, a Festival in Exile.”  July.

Fatoumata Diawarawho has enjoyed quite a buzz since the release of her debut CD Fatou,brings more of Mali’s rich musical tradition and songs about love, politics and empowerment to North America for a two month tour beginning in June

Nigerian Toureg guitar sensation Bombino, who just released a new CD produced by Black Key Dan Auerbach,  will be on the road through July 26.  His hypnotic show is something to revel in!

The legendary Gipsy Kings return to North America July 28 through August 12.

Reggae stalwarts Steel Pulse will bring their groove all this summer too with dates through August.

Up-and-coming Indian folk-rocker,  Raghu Dixit joins Indian tradition with contemporary stylings.  He brings his energetic show to North America in July

Solas, the quintessential Irish-American band, is touring all summer long and well into the fall in support the release of their latest CD.

Italy’s fabulous Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino, who hail from Salento, Puglia, will be in North America for most of July.  

Like I mentioned at the start,  this is just a taste. There is so much more world music going on across North America this summer.  Rise up, get out, enjoy and support live music!

 

 

 

Queens of the Stone Age – Slacker’s Artist of the Week.

QOTSA-472x472At this point, Queens of the Stone Age is a project of Josh Homme and friends. From his stoner-rock beginnings in California’s Mojave Desert to his current status as a swaggering rock icon and sought-after guest star on numerous other projects, the Queens remain his most consistent outlet and output.

This week, Queens of the Stone Age release their 6th album—called “Like Clockwork.” It’s their first album since 2007; Dave Grohl played drums on 6 of the tracks, and the album includes guest appearances from Arctic Monkeys’ Alex Turner, Trent Reznor, and even Elton John.

On this week’s Artist of the Week station, you’ll hear tracks from “…Like Clockwork”, along with a look at the music DNA of Josh Homme and Queens of the Stone Age- the artists they draw inspiration from and the many musicians that are directly influenced by their work.

Click here to check out Queens of the Stone Age – Slacker’s Artist of the Week.

Eliane Elias Celebrates Chet Baker on Slacker Jazz

Eliane Elias I Thought About YouWhile the Great American Songbook and Bossa Nova might at first seem to be disparate juxtapositions, it’s wise to remember that Antonio Carlos Jobim and Joao Gilberto were huge fans of Chet Baker’s relaxed, lyrical delivery of standards. Baker remains an iconic pioneer of West Coast Cool, as both an immediately identifiable vocalist and versatile trumpeter.

On her new Concord Jazz release, “I Thought About You,” vocalist /pianist Eliane Elias pays tribute to vocalist/trumpeter Baker, without losing sight of her Brazilian roots.  Eliane’s former husband, trumpeter Randy Brecker, puts his personal  stamp  on  “There Will Never Be Another You, “ “That Old Feeling,” and “Just Friends.” His phrasing shows that he is aware of Baker’s clear tone and subdued style yet inventive enough to develop a sense of originality on these standards.

Just as Baker grew up listening to music of the ‘30’s and ‘40’s, Elias and Brecker obviously grew up with an appreciation for Baker’s charismatic delivery and subdued style.  Elias, who has previously paid tribute to Jobim and Bill Evans on record, once again proves she is an artist beyond category!

Enjoy the essence of Eliane Elias’ “I Thought About You” on Slacker Jazz and Slacker Modern Jazz!

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