Music

Actor and honoree Steve Martin accepts his award at the 2013 Governors Awards on Saturday, Nov. 16, 2013 in Los Angeles. (Photo by Dan Steinberg/Invision/AP)

U.S. Registry Adds Calif. Artists

Sunday, March 29, 2015

With nods to the Doors, Sly & the Family Stone, the Righteous Brothers and Steve Martin, the latest selections to the Library of Congress’ National Recording Registry have a decidedly California slant. Each year the institution surveys more than 130 years of sound recordings and selects 25 of the most musically and historically important for special recognition and preservation in …

How Will You Die if You’re a Rock Star?

Sunday, March 29, 2015

There is much mystery surrounding the death of Tupac Shakur, killed in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas in 1996. Was Shakur’s murder gang-related? Was it part of the East Coast/West Coast hip-hop rivalry — perhaps related to the unsolved murder of Christopher Wallace, aka Biggie Smalls? Few think Shakur’s death was an …

Borrowing, Appropriating and Stealing Are as Old as Art Itself

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Blurred lines indeed. The recent verdict by a federal jury in Los Angeles may have settled one case, but it has ignited a larger debate about creativity and ownership and how to sort out the co-opted from the copied. After a jury determined Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams copied parts of Marvin Gaye’s …

If Elvis Were Still Alive ...

Sunday, January 18, 2015

What if Elvis Presley had lived? In August 1977, the singer was found unconscious in his Graceland home and later pronounced dead at age 42. But what if the King of Rock ’n’ Roll had in fact been …

With Interest Down, Piano Stores Close

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Washington — For months, Nick Margaritas has been reading stories of his coming demise. His intention, when he set up the alert for any news articles about “piano sales,” was to keep tabs on his world. What he …

Grateful Dead to Reunite for Final Concerts

Saturday, January 17, 2015

New York — The Grateful Dead is coming back to life for final concerts in July. The band announced Friday that surviving members Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann, Phil Lesh and Bob Weir will perform three shows from July 3-5 at Soldier Field in Chicago. The band is celebrating …

Concert Set to Honor Stevie Wonder

Thursday, January 15, 2015

New York — Willie Nelson, Usher and Coldplay’s Chris Martin will pay tribute to Stevie Wonder at a concert next month. The Recording Academy announced Wednesday that Ed Sheeran and Janelle Monae will also perform at Stevie Wonder: …

‘Empire’ Scores Big Ratings for Fox, But Can It Soar?

Monday, January 12, 2015

Empire, Fox’s new drama starring Terrence Howard as a hip-hop mogul and Taraji P. Henson as his ex-wife and competitor, is looking like a potential triumph for the network: About 10 million people tuned in the premiere last …

India’s Brass Bands Struggle

Sunday, January 11, 2015

New Delhi — The wedding season is in full swing in India, marking what should be the busiest time of year for the traditional brass bands that lead raucous processions announcing the arrival of the bridegroom to the …

R&B Singers Confront Growing Older

Sunday, January 11, 2015

The first great album I heard in 2014 was Love, Marriage & Divorce by Toni Braxton and Babyface. The last was D’Angelo’s Black Messiah. Plenty separated these excellent records. The former, a reunion of the R&B singer and …

Creative Self-Disruption

Sunday, January 4, 2015

No less than the taxi industry or the news media, the music business was defined in 2014 by “disruption,” that tech-world buzz word referring to the way a given field is upset — and in some cases remade …

Drops Co-Founder Finds True Calling

Sunday, January 4, 2015

What a difference a year makes. Toward the end of 2013, singer-fiddler Rhiannon Giddens and her band, the Carolina Chocolate Drops, were at a crossroads. One of the group’s original members, Dom Flemons, had decided to pursue a …

Bringing Back the Blues

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Canaan — From the Canaan Old Home Days parade to Autumnfest in Woonsocket, R.I., Teddy Makalinaw and Eben Brown have covered a lot of ground since taking their Blues Brothers act on the road in 2013. But heading …