Music

When you listen to the latest soulful reggae from The New Riddim you could easily believe it was created in Jamaica in the 1970s. Yet the Kansas City band’s “Second Sight” was, in fact, recorded locally.

This week’s edition of Local Listen features their song “Shoot the Piano Player.”

You catch them Friday, March 20, at Davey's Uptown Ramblers Club on Main and 34th in Kansas City, Mo. Doors open at 9. 

Local Listen: Drakkar Sauna

Mar 13, 2015

The Lawrence based duo, Drakkar Sauna, has been crafting eccentric music with an old-time sound for over a decade.  This edition of Local Listen features a meditation on interplanetary colonization.  Take a listen to The Long Sovereignty.

 

Hear More: Drakkar Sauna makes a rare appearance in Kansas City on Saturday, March 14, at the MiniBar.

 

Courtesy Nuwayv

Earlier this year when the Folk Alliance International conference was underway in Kansas City, Central Standard interviewed local musicians from different genres about how they write songs. That inspired us to launch a new series: "Story of a Song."

For this installment, Hannah Copeland spoke with members of the Kansas City band, Nuwayv, which defines its music as "rugged soul." Hannah explains how the four artists collaborated to write their new album’s final track, “We Shinin.”

Antonin Dvorak's Symphony No. 8 is joyful and romantic — fitting for the season, as we bid adieu to the bitter winter weather.

“It was written when Dvorak was at a resort, and this symphony sounds like that,” Kansas City Symphony executive director Frank Byrne told Steve Kraske on Up To Date.

Local Listen: Millie Edwards

Mar 6, 2015
Facebook / Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame

Millie Edwards may be one of the smallest members of KC’s jazz community, but she owns one of the biggest voices on the scene. This week’s Local Listen features her collaboration with pianist Mike Pagán on the Duke Ellington composition “In a Mellow Tone.”

HEAR MORE: Edwards entertains every Monday at The Phoenix. On Sunday, March 8, she’ll be featured in a KC Jazz Vespers concert at the First Baptist Church of Kansas City. Admission is free.

  Though he is typically placed in the jazz category, guitarist Bill Frisell plays a wide variety of styles, including folk and Americana. On this edition of Up To Date, he chats with Steve Kraske about his beginnings and his eclectic career. 

courtesy: Akshay Dinakar

Akshay Dinakar, a senior at Shawnee Mission East High School in Prairie Village, Kan., has been invited to play with the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America (NYO-USA).

Carnegie Hall on Tuesday announced the 144 musicians, ages 16-19, chosen after an extensive audition process. They're considered to be some of the finest players in the country. 

Local Listen: Maps For Travelers

Feb 27, 2015
mapsfortravelersband.com/music/

Even before forming Maps For Travelers in 2010, the four men in the ensemble had been adding to Kansas City's notable tradition of fostering brawny post-punk bands.This edition of Local Listen features “Static,” a bracing single the band released in 2011.

Hear More: Maps For Travelers performs Friday at the RecordBar. Doors open at 9:30.

Hannah Copeland / KCUR

Dozens of Kansas City bands performed at Folk Alliance International's 27th annual music conference and Winter Music Camp, Feb. 18-22 at Crown Center. Local musicians were among the thousands of musicians, concert promoters, industry representatives, folk DJs, and other supporters occupying the convention hotels for what Folk Alliance called "Planet Folk."

The Hot Sardines

Combine a bawdy brass line-up, Fats Waller style piano, a female lead with a voice from another era, and a tap dancer as percussion...and you have New York-based jazz band The Hot Sardines.  Band leaders Elizabeth Bougerol and Evan Palazzo join Steve Kraske from their tour bus to chat about their fairytale beginning and their unique style. 

Julie Denesha / KCUR

Hundreds of musicians carrying instruments are filling the hallways of the Westin Hotel in downtown Kansas City, Mo. this weekend.  Clustered in small groups picking, strumming and fiddling, they are gathered for the 27th Annual Folk Alliance Conference and Winter Music Camp.

On day two of the conference, fiddler Betse Ellis was fighting off a cold and trying to pace herself.

“I’ve certainly been sicker than this onstage,” says Ellis with a laugh.

Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

One of the youngest performers who will be showcased at this week’s Folk Alliance International conference here in Kansas City is a teenager from Overland Park.

Kate Rose is a 15-year-old singer-songwriter and student at Olathe East High School. She recently shared the process by which she wrote the song, And The People Will Remember.

Michael Byars / KCUR

Does it start with the music or the words? Can anybody do it? In time for the Folk Alliance International conference, local musicians share what it takes to write a song. 

Guests:

Lomax Collection / Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.

When the Folk Alliance International moved its headquarters to Kansas City and held its annual conference in town last year, quite a few area musicians discovered that they qualified as folk musicians.

Local Listen: Bon Ton Soul Accordion Band

Feb 13, 2015
Bon Ton Soul Accordion Band / Facebook

The Bon Ton Soul Accordion Band was one of Kansas City’s preeminent party ensembles in the 1980s. The bawdy dance band recently reunited after a lengthy hiatus.

This week’s edition of Local Listen features “Steal Away,” a track from the group’s 1984 album “Ain’t No Zydeco… But It’s Something Else.”

The group will perform a combination Valentine’s Day and Mardi Gras show at Kanza Hall, Saturday, Feb. 14 at 4 p.m.

Kansas City native Kelley Hunt has been recording and performing for years. Her latest album Beautiful Bones has received some of the biggest accolades of her career. The Lawrence-based blues singer joins Steve Kraske to talk about her long career and upcoming performance at the Folly Theater. Also joining the conversation is Hunt's manager, co-producer, and husband, Al Berman.

Days before the deadline for a clarinet and saxophone competition to win $1,000 and a trip to Paris, Gunnar Gidner could barely stand. A spinal injury had left him unable to walk, much less practice his tenor saxophone, for two and a half months.

Gidner had recovered enough to return to school at the UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance in December. His jazz combo was rehearsing on his first day back, and Gidner’s professor, Dan Thomas, heard the recording and thought it was good. Really good.

Local Listen: Marcus Hampton

Feb 4, 2015
Artists Recording Collective

Trumpeter Marcus Hampton, a cousin of jazz legend Lionel Hampton, recently moved to the Kansas City area. The trumpeter and bandleader ably maintains his family’s rich legacy. This week’s edition of Local Listen features Hampton House of Jazz, the title track of his 2014 album.

Hear More: Marcus Hampton’s sextet will be joined by vocalist Toni Gates at the Blue Room on Friday, February 6.

http://eddiemooreandtheoutercircle.bandcamp.com/

Eddie Moore and the Outer Circle have become esteemed insiders in Kansas City’s music community. While based in jazz, the group’s music contains appealing elements of hip-hop and R&B.

This edition of Local Listen features Lesson, a track from the band’s 2013 album The Freedom of Expression.

HEAR MORE: Eddie Moore and the Outer Circle will play Thursday, January 29, at the recordBar.

courtesy: Kansas City Symphony

The Kansas City Symphony's associate conductor, Aram Demirjian, just on the heels of conducting his first classical series concert in Kansas City, is one of six finalists for music director of the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra (KSO). 

Local Listen: Bassist Bob Bowman

Jan 23, 2015

Bob Bowman has been a fixture on Kansas City’s jazz scene for years. He recently released Songs for Sandra, a radiant album that demonstrates why Bowman is respected as the dean of Kansas City’s bassists. This edition of Local Listen features the new track Street Cartwheels

Hear More: Bob Bowman will perform with his group Bow Dog at the Blue Room on Friday, January 23.

Local Listen: The Kansas City Bear Fighters

Jan 13, 2015

The Kansas City Bear Fighters recognize the polarizing nature of the political and social climate in Kansas. The jaunty band documented their conflicted feelings in a defiant song about state pride.

This week's edition of Local Listen features "You're In Kansas" from the ensemble's 2014 album "The Planet Where We Fell in Love."

Hear More: The Kansas City Bear Fighters perform at the Westport Saloon on Saturday, January 17 at 10pm.

Paul Andrews

Connecting to musician Ashley Miller as a performer, when he's on stage or when you're listening to one of his albums, is easy.

The frontman for Kansas City-based indie band Metatone started out in a band called Pewep in the Formats, back in the early 2000s, when he was just a teen.

Local Listen: Vinson Cole

Jan 9, 2015

Vinson Cole may not be a household name, but the operatic tenor is revered in Kansas City's artistic circles.

This week's edition of Local Listen features a splendid track from Cole's 1993 album "In Love With Love."

Cole's contributions will be recognized in a concert benefiting the Lyric Opera of Kansas City on Sunday, January 11 at 4 pm at the Folly Theater, 300 W. 12th Street, Kansas City, Mo.

courtesy of the family

Three notable arts figures died in Kansas City in recent weeks: Ann K. Brown, Brenda Nelson, and Tommy Ruskin.

Drummer Tommy Ruskin, 72, died the morning of Jan. 1, after a long illness.

A native of Kansas City, Ruskin’s career spanned nearly half a century. He began performing as a teenager with singers such as Marilyn Maye, and went on to play with other jazz greats like Al Cohn, Scott Hamilton, Gene Harris, Zoot Sims, and Bill Watrous.

Pages