Music

In this Aug. 20, 2013, photo, Tina Caruso, left, smiles as Percy Sledge signs a poster for her in Florence, Ala. Sledge, who soared from part-time singer and hospital orderly to lasting fame with his aching, forlorn performance on the classic "When a Man Loves a Woman," died Tuesday, April 14, 2015, in Louisiana. He was 74. (Allison Carter/The TimesDaily via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT

‘When a Man Loves a Woman’ Has Staying Power

Thursday, April 16, 2015

The great Percy Sledge record When a Man Loves a Woman was released 49 years ago on Thursday. Credited to songwriters Andrew Wright and Calvin Lewis, it was recorded at Muscle Shoals Sound Studio in Sheffield, Ala., and featured some of the era’s great R&B instrumentalists. It was the only song the two ever wrote together, though Sledge long insisted …

Musicians Blast Tidal Streaming

Thursday, April 16, 2015

For an allegedly artist-friendly take on streaming services, a lot of artists sure seem to hate Tidal. Over the last few days, several high-profile acts have been outspoken about their problems with Tidal’s optics and messaging, going so far as to hope for its downfall. One of the first was British pop singer Lily Allen, who predicted on Twitter that under Tidal’s relatively …

Ben Gibbard’s New Sound

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Ben Gibbard never thought he’d find himself where he did at the end of 2012. The boyish frontman of Seattle’s Death Cab for Cutie had spent the previous decade and a half establishing a reputation as one of the most sensitive — and hardest-working — figures in American indie rock. The band’s music, …

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 …

Song Leak May Help Madonna

Sunday, December 28, 2014

The year-end surprise album release is becoming a holiday tradition. First, Beyonce, then D’Angelo: Each of them released recordings that came out of nowhere to capture the pop imagination just in time for the New Year. But what …

The Passion of Joe Cocker

Friday, December 26, 2014

A few years ago we were watching a televised concert series, when the voice on the stage suddenly thundered through the TV speakers. In the flesh, with gravel and grit, Joe Cocker was live and spouting the blues. …