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!

Patchy Sanders, we hardly knew ye.  The Ashland-based folk band is scattering in search of new projects, which is a nice way of saying the band is breaking up. 

But a few final gigs loom, and before those, the Patchy assemblage visited our studio to chat with JPR's Eric Teel, and play some of the band's original music. 

For this year's mix of the Best Songs Of 2015, NPR Music surveyed program directors, music directors, hosts and editors at Member stations across the country to find out their absolute favorite song of the year. Well, the results are in, and you can hear those special songs right here:

Launch the Mix!

More than 50 public radio music experts took part, including JPR's own Eric Teel and Dave Jackson, making for a four-hour mix that touches on rock, pop, jazz, folk and everything in between.

Little May is a pop/folk/indie band formed in Sydney, Australia in 2012. It’s safe to say that the last two years have been a whirlwind for age-old friends Hannah Field, Liz Drummond and Annie Hamilton - from topping hype machine charts to sold-out Australian shows, support tours with Angus and Julia Stone, Bernard Fanning, Cold War Kids & Rodriguez, international festival appearances including The Great Escape, Bonnaroo Festival and CMJ where they were officially selected as one of the “11 Breakout Acts of CMJ”.

The roots of David Wax Museum stretch back nearly a decade, and all the way from New England to Mexico. As a student at Harvard, Wax began traveling south of the border to study and immerse himself in the country’s traditional music and culture. Back in Boston, he met fiddler/singer Suz Slezak, whose love of traditional American and Irish folk music fused with Wax’s Mexo-Americana into a singular, energetic blend that captivated audiences and critics alike.

Brian Blauser / Mountain Stage

The members of Lake Street Dive - named after an avenue of seedy bars in Olson's native Minneapolis - met in 2004 as students at Boston's New England Conservatory of Music. Powerhouse singer Rachael Price fronted the quartet and drummer Michael Calabrese filled out the rhythm section.

Every new album from Dar Williams represents her thoughts and feelings about both her own life and larger forces in the world. But her ninth studio record, Emerald, marks a particularly dramatic confluence between her experiences and broader contemporary culture—and what it means to be a songwriter at this moment in history.

Brother-sister duo Tristan and Tashina Clarridge, long known and lauded by those steeped in the American fiddle tradition, are joined by hammer dulcimer wizard Simon Chrisman. Together, they weave a tapestry of sound all their own, drawing on roots in bluegrass, Celtic, jazz and old-time traditions.

Not quite country, Americana, folk, songwriter or pop, Daniel Romano’s exquisite and expansive new album, If I’ve Only One Time Askin’ is pieces of each, but ultimately the work of a singular mind. Self-produced and largely self-performed in his hometown Welland, Ontario, a picturesque water town near Niagara, the album features Romano’s baritone croon and poetic hard luck storytelling set atop an expanded palette filled with sweeping strings, blasts of horn, stately piano, twangy pedal steel, an 808 drum machine and swaths of accordion.

Soleil Rowan

Like his trademark suit, David Myles’ music is timeless. Regardless of quickly passing trends and fads, it will persevere. From soulful, contemporary pop crooners to delicate, jazzy folk ditties, and down-home, back porch roots tunes to infectious hip-hop earworms, David’s only artistic constants are his always growing, shape shifting songwriting, and his exceptional ability to entertain. David effortlessly injects any song with his irresistible energy, which has led him to numerous collaborations, most recently with the Latin Grammy award-winning Alex Cuba on “In 1-2-3-4” —a simmering toe-tapper infused with the heart of Havana’s dance floors.

Soleil Rowan

There are certain people in life who have such a unique energy that it demands to be shared. Whether he appears solo or with his full band, Daby Touré never fails to astound audiences with his ethereal voice, masterful guitar work and catchy original songs. He illuminates the darkest of concert halls with his joyful performances and infectious love of music. A marvelous lyricist, composer of accessible melodic hooks, endearing performer and virtuoso guitarist, Daby Touré reaches deeply into the hearts of listeners with his approachable and unique style of music.

Known for his energetic strumming on the ukulele, Jake Shimabukuro's performances incorporate elements of thoughtful, sophisticated arrangements to spontaneous, improvised passages. In addition to his original compositions, his repertoire includes Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody, Schubert’s Ave Maria and Cohen’s Hallelujah.

Soleil Rowan

The Catskill Mountains hid rock ‘n’ roll’s best kept secret for almost 18 years. Then in 2008, singer and songwriter Arleigh Kincheloe said goodbye to her hometown hideaway and moved to New York City to start Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds. In the years since, the group has performed more than 600 shows, released two full-length albums and an EP produced by Randy Jackson (American Idol), and enchanted tastemakers ranging from The Wall Street Journal and LA Times to Glamour, USA Today, and The New Yorker.

Eric Teel

Singer-songwriter Martin Sexton creates music that instantly draws you in. His songs cover the American musical landscape of soul, gospel, R&B, country and blues. Sexton slides easily from the mellow tenor that Rolling Stone calls “soul marinated” to a surprisingly beautiful falsetto and back down again to a raspy blues shout, creating an experience that is dynamic and emotional. His energetic and heartfelt live performances have earned him legions of devoted fans and critical acclaim. 

Whetherman is the moniker of 31-year-old Nicholas Williams, who has released six full-length albums of soulful folk music, most recently the critically-acclaimed Seeds for Harvest in April of this year. BBC Radio praises his latest release as “Completely beautiful… An absolute delight to the ears.” The songs display soulful vocals, percussive acoustic guitar, rolling harmonica and earnest lyrics creating his timeless apple-pie Americana sound.

III, the third full-length effort from the L.A.-based duo, is an album born from fascination with the sweet and the sleazy, light and dark, danger and magic.

Ben Folds has had a brilliant career that includes multiple studio albums, a pair documenting his renowned live performances, a remix collection, music for film and TV, an all a capella record, as well as collaborations with artists spanning Sara Bareilles and Amanda Palmer to Nick Hornby and William Shatner.

Bassist Gary Peacock Is At The Soloist's Service

Sep 7, 2015

Formed in 2010, The Wild Reeds began as a three-part harmony girl group featuring Kinsey Lee, Sharon Silva, and Mackenzie Howe. Over the past year, they've transitioned (with the addition of Nick Jones, who contributes drums and percussions, and bassist Nick Phakpiseth) to a full indie folk rock force that has been sweeping the West Coast. All three women in the group are skilled vocalists and multi-instrumentalists, incorporating guitar, harmonium, banjo, and auto harp into many of their performances.

Eric Teel

Jonatha Brooke has been writing songs, making records and touring since her early days in Boston with her band The Story, which released two albums, Grace in Gravity and The Angel in the House, on Elektra Records. In 1995, Ms. Brooke released the first of two solo albums on MCA/Universal, Plumb, followed by Ten Cent Wings in 1997.

Soleil Rowan

Back in February, NPR announced Fantastic Negrito as the winner of their inaugural Tiny Desk Concert Contest. Here at JPR, we watched nearly 35 excellent videos submitted by musicians from our region and decided to select our own winner -- the best of the State of Jefferson. When the dust settled, we had a clear winner: Wesley Jensen & The Penny Arcade.

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