JPR Music

JPR Music is a place that celebrates music discovery.  It's a place that collects what we think is exciting on the contemporary music  scene, in the State of Jefferson and beyond.  JPR Music features exclusive Live Sessions, reviews by JPR music hosts, NPR Tiny Desk concerts and First Listens of new releases.  Visit often ... and re-discover music!

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Live Session Archive
8:46 am
Tue August 26, 2014

Cee Cee James Live Session

Dubbed the "Vocal Volcano" by Robert Horn from the Washington Blues Society, Cee Cee James has been singing and writing songs for over 20 years, all the while gathering up stellar reviews and awards from all three CD's she has released.

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3:14 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

Pink Martini Percussionist Derek Rieth Dies

The multi-instrumentalist was an original member of the Portland band. Pink Martini posted a picture of Rieth and brief comments on their Facebook page on Friday.
Derek Rieth, a longtime member of Pink Martini, has died, the band announced on Friday. The percussionist, who contributed everything from bongos to finger cymbals to the group, had been a founding member of the Portland act. The cause of death has not been announced.
Live Session Archive
10:35 am
Fri August 22, 2014

Br'er Rabbit (Now Known As Wild Rabbit) Live Session

[Edit: Since this live session aired, the band has changed their name to Wild Rabbit.]  Though all four members of Br'er Rabbit grew up running around wooded areas of the same small town in the farthest Northwest corner of Washington state, brothers Zach and Nathan didn't meet Miranda, the third founding member, until they had all ended up in New York City. This kind of backyard folk seasoned by the edge, polish and fervor of big-city inclinations is at the root of the style they call folk-stomp Americana.

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Live Session Archive
12:58 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

Patchy Sanders Live Session

Patchy Sanders, a genuine family band, is comprised of sisters Dani (banjo, harp) and Jacqui Aubert (vocals), their partners Ian Van Ornum (mandolin, bouzouki, guitar) and Dan Sherrill (guitar, banjo, mandolin), and good friends Sara Wilbur (violin, viola) and Eric Jones (upright bass). While some find it easy to characterize their music, others hesitatingly distinguish their style as noir-grass, neo-folk, neo-Americana, or simply Alternative.

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Live Session Archive
10:24 am
Mon August 11, 2014

Quiet Life Live Session

Qamuuqin Maxwell

Quiet Life, led by brothers Sean and Ryan Spellman, has roots on the Jersey Shore, but musical sparks flew when they met further north in New London, where New England meets the Sound. From there, they ran down a dream to the California Coast, all the way to San Luis Obispo, and then fled the promised land for the northern charm of Portland, Oregon. Just a pair of brothers and a few good friends in a van that runs on waste veggie oil.

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Live Session Archive
9:14 am
Fri August 1, 2014

Josh Ritter Live Session

Dominic Barth

Born in Idaho, singer-songwriter Josh Ritter recorded and released his self-titled debut in 1999 after graduating from Oberlin College with a self-created “American History through Narrative Folk Music” major. While attending college in Oberlin, Ohio, Ritter got his first listen to Leonard Cohen and Gillian Welch. He instantly fell in love with their songs and dropped his neuroscience major in favor of the pursuit of music.

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Live Session Archive
10:56 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Black Prairie Live Session

Eric Teel

The band's story started in 2007, when Chris Funk gathered local musicians he admired for a chance to write music and play instruments he wasn't utilizing in his role as guitarist for The Decemberists. He pulled in fellow Decemberists Nate Query and Jenny Conlee, on bass and accordion, Annalisa Tornfelt on fiddle, and Jon Neufeld on guitar. In 2012, Decemberists drummer John Moen joined in, too. Their only ambition was to have fun, and their all-acoustic instrumentation meant they could hold practices in each other's living rooms.

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Live Session Archive
9:51 am
Tue June 24, 2014

Trevor Hall Live Session

Trevor Hall realized at a very young age that music was more than just a passion. As an eleven year old, playing harmonica beside his father in the cradle of the weeping willows of South Carolina, music quickly became his most intimate companion, guide and creative outlet. In his elementary years, he began to write his own songs and perform them locally.

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Upcoming JPR Music Special
12:45 pm
Fri June 20, 2014

Amy LaVere Live Session

Amy LaVere
Eric Teel

Amy LaVere was born in a small Texas/Louisiana border town, nurtured by musical parents with a passion for traditional country. Her family moved 13 times by the time she entered high school, ultimately landing in Detroit where Amy fronted the punk band Last Minute while still in her teens. From there, her musical journey became a wild ride of travels.

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Live Session Archive
5:20 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

Lily & Madeleine Live Session

Lily & Madeleine
Eric Teel

Nobody expected Lily & Madeleine’s first original song, “In the Middle,” to rack up a half a million YouTube views. The Internet is obsessed with what’s new and what’s next, the fads and memes of viral culture, and so it would have to seem a little incongruous for social networks and content aggregators to embrace gimmick-free, black-and-white footage of an unplugged duo crooning a bittersweet and understated melody.

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Live Session Archive
4:29 pm
Sat June 14, 2014

Josh Rouse Live Session

Credit Allen Clark

It may have been 15+ years – from roots in rural Nebraska, through time in ‘Music City’ Nashville, TN, and to the current day relocated to a new home in cosmopolitan Spain – but it seems that the song spirits have been constant companions for Josh Rouse. 

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Live Session Archive
3:15 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

The Show Ponies Live Session

The Show Ponies are an indie-folk outfit from Los Angeles with old time and country influences. Their new album, We’re Not Lost, is proof of the rewards of taking a leap of faith. Funded entirely by crowdsourcing, the album is a realization of both their ardent fan base, and the power of setting a goal and trusting the process. What they’re moving toward is becoming one of the hottest Old-Time groups on of the West Coast, with a stellar sophomore album that flirts effortlessly with a modern new-roots sound and a hard driven progressive beat.

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Live Session Archive
11:35 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Jillian Rae Live Session

Jillian Rae is a multi-talented violinist, lead vocalist, and songwriter whose creative and dynamic style of violin playing, along with her lifelong experience as a performer, lend her an assured stage presence. She has an innate ability to create hook-laden tunes affirming the positives of life in the face of struggle and disappointment.

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Live Session Archive
10:26 am
Mon May 12, 2014

Dawn Landes Live Session

Credit Michael Katzif

Bridging the worlds of indie rock, alt-country, and folk, Louisville, Kentucky native singer/songwriter Dawn Landes got her start after moving to New York to attend N.Y.U. and play music.

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Live Session Archive
9:27 am
Fri May 2, 2014

Barnaby Bright Live Session

Nathan and Rebecca Bliss, the voices and the brains behind Barnaby Bright, are truly the modern day traveling troubadours, averaging roughly 200 shows and 40,000 miles traveled a year. You can find them on streets as far away as London or Amsterdam, and as remote as St. Paris, Ohio, toting their massive haul of instruments: multiple guitars, harmonium, banjo, ukulele, floorboard bass, thumb pianos and keyboards.

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Live Session Archive
3:03 pm
Tue April 29, 2014

Bela Fleck Live Session

Qamuuqin Maxwell

Just in case you aren’t familiar with Béla Fleck, there are many who say he’s the premiere banjo player in the world. Others claim that Béla has virtually reinvented the image and the sound of the banjo through a remarkable performing and recording career that has taken him all over the musical map and on a range of solo projects and collaborations.

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Live Session Archive
1:56 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Sarah Jarosz Live Session

Sarah Jarosz
Qamuuqin Maxwell

Rolling Stone has compared Sarah Jarosz to Gillian Welch; Mojo labeled her a “newgrass prodigy” for her skills on banjo, guitar and mandolin; and the normally reserved New York Times hailed her as “one of acoustic music’s finest talents,” with songwriting chops to match her instrumental prowess. 

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Live Session Archive
9:30 am
Tue April 15, 2014

Matt Andersen Live Session

With over 2 million views on Youtube, a 2013 European Blues award, and named Best Solo Performer at the Memphis Blues Challenge, the entire world is now discovering Matt Andersen. A powerhouse performer with a giant soul-filled voice and commanding stage presence, Matt has built a formidable following the old fashioned way - touring the world and letting the converted audiences and Andersen devotees spread his reputation through word of mouth. 

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Live Session Archive
1:31 pm
Fri April 4, 2014

Wild Child Live Session

Dominic Barth

Wild Child’s founding members Kelsey Wilson and Alexander Beggins first met in 2009 while touring with a Danish act called The Migrant. Both call Texas home: Wilson, a classically-trained violinist who wrote her first songs under the wing of legendary country music outlaw Ray Wiley Hubbard, hails from the fabled bluegrass circles of Wimberly; and Beggins, a ukulele player from Houston, was finishing up at The University of Texas while on the that tour.

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Live Session Archive
12:45 pm
Fri April 4, 2014

Shook Twins Live Session

Qamuuqin Maxwell

Born and raised in Sandpoint Idaho, the Shook Twins are an indie folk-pop band now hailing from Portland. Identical twins, Katelyn and Laurie Shook, Kyle Volkman and Niko Daoussis form the core quartet. Central elements of the Shook Twins’ sound are a wide range of instrumentation, including banjo, guitar, electric and upright bass, mandolin, electric guitar, electronic drums, face drum (beatbox), glockenspiel, ukulele, banjo drumming and their signature golden egg.

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