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World Cafe

Weeknights 7-9 p.m.

World Cafe launched in 1991. Distributed by NPR to more than 200 U.S. radio stations and heard by nearly 600,000 listeners each week, World Cafe is known by artists, appreciative audiences, and the radio and music industries as an influential source for music discovery.

The two-hour daily program features a mix of artist interviews with in-studio performances by both established and emerging artists. The music selection encompasses singer-songwriters, classic rock, indie rock, Americana, alt-country, blues, world music, R&B and soul. As the nation’s most listened-to public radio music program, its impact on the careers and audience awareness of thousands of artists is immeasurable.

Ways to Connect

Nothing about the music Samantha Fish makes suggests that she's ever been shy. Bold and expressive, it shows off her considerable talent – but it took a bit of a push for Fish to get on stage for the first time.

Big Thief had a pretty remarkable 2019. The band put out two beautiful albums, U.F.O.F. in May and Two Hands in October. Paired together, these albums present a larger picture of the band at the height of its powers, thinking and performing beyond the traditional album-tour cycle.

It feels like 23-year-old guitar prodigy Marcus King was always destined to make music. He's from a multi-generational musical family and has had his own band since his teenage days in South Carolina. He's released three studio albums with that band, the Marcus King Band, but about a year ago, it was time for a change.

Sometimes you have to strike when the iron is hot, and sometimes you have to be patient. For today's guest Jeremy Ivey, that meant recording his first solo album at the age of 41.

North Carolina's M.C. Taylor, also known as Hiss Golden Messenger, is a seeker. He's someone who is looking for truth – truth from the world, and truth from himself. You can hear that in the songs on his latest album, Terms of Surrender, an album so full of truth he originally wasn't sure if he should release it at all.

The first time I heard Son Little's song "The River" back in 2014, it completely floored me. With a mix of R&B and soul, it simultaneously sounded both timeless and of the moment, much more than a simple throwback tune.

Already one of the biggest bands in the world, The Lumineers did something adventurous on the group's third album, III: The Denver-based group created a record divided into three chapters, telling the story of a family across three generations and how addiction touched those lives.

Some bands feel like your own best-kept secret. Take The Growlers: The California group got its start when asked to play a house party. For more than a decade since, the band's managed to keep that underground feeling, where every show feels like you're seeing something special, like you're part of an in-the-know community.

Pardon the double negative, but The New Pornographers simply can't not write hooks. Since forming in Vancouver in 1997, the band has released 8 full-length albums of glittering pop-rock earworms. The group's latest, 2019's In the Morse Code of Brake Lights, is no exception.

Who doesn't love a good breakup record? Well, maybe not the person going through it. On Forever Turned Around, Whitney flips the notion of the breakup record on its head. Instead of focusing on the demise, the Chicago duo's record is all about commitment.

Speaking to Michaela Anne feels a lot like listening to her music — she radiates a warmth that immediately makes you feel at home. For an artist who's spent her life constantly on the move, making wherever you are feel like home is an important skill. Michaela Anne's family moved constantly while her dad was in the Navy; by the time she graduated high school, she'd lived in 20 different houses.

Who doesn't love a good dog? Here at World Cafe, we are pro-doggo, and so is our next guest, Anthony LaMarca, who fronts a band called The Building (that is, when he isn't busy playing guitar in the Grammy award-winning band, The War on Drugs).

In this playlist of our 2019 Alternative Latin music favorites, you'll notice there isn't a particular sound defining the realm of the genre. The common denominator here is that these artists decided to be sonically bold. It was a magically abundant year of outstanding music from musicians that delivered complex beats, striking socio-political anthems and imaginative takes on traditional Latin sounds.

You might know Norah Jones primarily as a jazz singer and pianist, but for just over a decade, she's also been a part of an alt-country trio called Puss N Boots.

"When you become something on the internet and not something in real life," Clairo explains, "It's this very strange cognitive dissonance where you're like, 'Well, is something actually happening, or am I dreaming that people know who I am?' "

You might know that song, called "Cold Little Heart" as the opening credits to the HBO show Big Little Lies, starring Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon.

Here at World Cafe, where music discovery is buried deep in our musical DNA, we play a lot of new music. As we look at the current musical landscape — through streaming services and public radio stations alike — we've noticed that music discovery is increasingly becoming genre-less. The best sounds from Americana, R&B, indie rock, classic rock, alt-rock (whatever that actually means anymore), hip-hop and singer-songwriters all have one thing in common: that regardless of the genre, the passion for music is driven by our love of discovery and our curiosity.

Where a musician lives can tell you a lot about their songs. Joan Shelley wears her love of Kentucky proudly, but for her latest album, Like The River Loves The Sea, Shelley left her home outside of Louisville, Ky., and headed to a very different environment: Iceland.

In any given year, Nashville's splashiest releases invariably benefit from name recognition and multi-pronged promotional muscle — so a lot of the music bubbling out of scenes that are slightly less visible, or more self-sufficient, might not get its due. In the interest of fairness, then: Here are seven strong debut projects from Music City this year that shouldn't escape notice.

Over the last half century, Jeff Lynne has left an indelible mark on popular music.

Angel Olsen's fourth album, All Mirrors is a departure from her indie rock sensibilities of albums past, but that wasn't always the plan. The songs were initially recorded as sparse and stripped-down numbers — in the style of Bruce Springsteen's Nebraska.

Chrissie Hynde has wanted to release her latest album, Valve Bone Woe, for a very long time. It all started about 20 years ago, when she teamed up with film composer and music producer Marius de Vries to work on music for the movie Eye Of The Beholder.

This past September, the 20th annual Americana Music Festival & Conference featured a broad range of showcases from diverse musicians across alt-country, roots-rock, bluegrass, R&B, blues, folk and the singer-songwriter genre.

This past September, the 20th annual Americana Music Festival & Conference featured a broad range of showcases from diverse musicians across alt-country, roots-rock, bluegrass, R&B, blues, folk and the singer-songwriter genre.

This past September, the 20th annual Americana Music Festival & Conference featured a broad range of showcases from diverse musicians across alt-country, roots-rock, bluegrass, R&B, blues, folk and the singer-songwriter genre.

Our guest, Azniv Korkejian, records as Bedouine. The name reflects the many moves Azniv has made in her life — born Syria, Azniv grew up in Saudi Arabia before coming to the United States. Here, she lived in Boston and Houston, as well as several other Southern cities, before she settled in Los Angeles' Echo Park neighborhood.

Joy Oladokun and Mercy Bell grew up trying to exist as members of multiple communities whose boundaries, organized around race, culture, region, class, religion or sexuality, didn't always overlap. For them, contemporary folk music made self-expression and a sense of belonging not seem mutually exclusive. From opposite sides of the country — Arizona in Oladokun's case and Massachusetts in Bell's — they embarked on journeys to become singer-songwriters who close the gaps between the particulars of who they are and what they've lived and the potential for broad connection.

This past September, the 20th annual Americana Music Festival & Conference featured a broad range of showcases from diverse musicians across alt-country, roots-rock, bluegrass, R&B, blues, folk and the singer-songwriter genre.

Coldplay, one of the biggest bands in the world, recently announced that the Chris Martin and company will not be touring in support of their latest album until they can figure out how to negate the environmental impact of their concerts.

One of my favorite viral videos in recent memory involved Liam Gallagher, former front man of Oasis, answering questions from a group of kids. It showcased his supremely talented wit, and a bit of his heart too.

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