Music

Yosvany Terry Brings His Afro-Cuban Brand of Jazz to D.C.

Eve M. Ferguson

Born into a musical family, Terry’s father Eladio “Don Pancho” Terry was a bandleader, violinist and master shekere player in his hometown of Camaguey, which has also produced other Cuban musical luminaries such as Omar Sosa. Schooled at the prestigious National School of Arts (ENA) and Amadeo Roldan Conservatory in Havana, Yosvany aspired to play the violin like his father, but was instead guided to the saxophone and continues his father’s unique playing style on the shekere.

A New Grace Jones Documentary: ‘Bloodlight and Bami’

Dwight Brown

Born in Jamaica (1949) and raised outside of Syracuse, New York, she was a shy, repressed daughter of a Pentecostal minister. It was no wonder that Grace rebelled — big time. By the 1960s she lived in a New York City hippie commune, was a go-go-dancer and heralded the effects of LSD. A blossoming modeling career took her to Paris in the ‘70s, where she did runway for Yves St. Laurent, appeared on the cover of Vogue and was roommates with fellow models Jerry Hall and Jessica Lang.

Recording Academy Task Force to Investigate Music Industry

Randall

As part of its charter, the task force will identify the various barriers and unconscious biases faced by underrepresented communities throughout the music industry and, specifically, across Recording Academy operations and policies. In an effort to determine pathways toward greater parity at every level of the organization, the task force will look specifically at Recording Academy governance, hiring and promotion practices, membership, awards, and telecast.Grammys

Farewell Rock ‘n’ Roll: Hip Hop, R&B Are Biggest U.S. Music Genres

Jill Serjeant

Powered by a 72 percent increase in on-demand audio streaming, eight of the top 10 albums came from the world of rap or R&B, including Kendrick Lamar’s “DAMN,” Drake’s “More Life” and “24K Magic” by Bruno Mars, according to Nielsen Music’s 2017 year-end report, released on Wednesday. Rap and R&B also dominate the Grammy awards later in January, with rapper Jay-Z and Lamar leading nominations.

Carrying on Musical Family Traditions at the Grammys

Geraldine Wyckoff

As the title suggests, Gumbo stirs up a mixture of genres all of which remain solidly in Morton’s comfort zone and mastery. He gets funky on another original, the dance-ready, “Sticking to My Guns” that gets down with a full band – horns and all – plus background singers. He sends his message with a groove on “Religion,” and offers some old-school style soul on “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright” that features The Chicago Kid and background vocals by the Hamiltones. Morton 

A Night at the Opera

Anne Branigin

When I saw that Turandot, the opera in which “Nessun Dorma” is featured, was playing at the Metropolitan Opera House, I knew I had found the perfect entry point into an art form that always felt a bit beyond my reach. I haven’t done a whole lot of fine-artsy things in New York City, and had resolved that I should do better with my time than sit in my apartment and scroll through Netflix. New York City is one of the places in the world where great opera is so accessible.

Racial Dynamics and Latin Music in the U.S.

Angelo Franco

Much like American Hip-Hop, reggaeton was first an “underground” genre that came from urban, predominantly black, working-class communities. In the Puerto Rican context, reggaeton’s emergence in the 1990s is tied to public housing developments that were part of anti-crime initiatives in the island. Dubbed Mano Dura contra el Crimen (Iron Fist against Crime), it was enacted in 1993 by then governor Pedro Roselló (the very same one who danced to the Macarena in his campaign rallies). 

Is Wyclef Jean Really ‘Unsung’?

Ericka Blount Danois

When the family moved to New Jersey, he started a hip-hop group, the Tranzlator Crew, in high school with Marcie Harriell (who left the group and later became a Broadway actress) and Lauryn Hill and Pras, which they later renamed the Fugees (short for “refugees”). His parents’ displeasure at his choice of music continued. Jean’s father insisted that he couldn’t serve two masters; it’s either God or the devil.

MC Lyte on Why Female Emcees Are Now MIA

Ronda Racha Penrice

Thirty years ago, “Take It Lyte” and the more popular “I Cram to Understand U” were how most hip-hop lovers were introduced to MC Lyte. By the time her album Lyte as a Rock dropped the next year, in 1988, there was no debating whether MC Lyte was a bona fide emcee. She was actually an elite one. A year later, she told no lies when she boasted, “I’m the dopest female that you’ve heard thus far,” on the classic “Cha Cha Cha” from her sophomore album, Eyes on This.

Reflecting on the Legacy of Prince

Aliya S. King

It is the shock of his sudden death from an accidental drug overdose at the age of 57 that has made the first year without the Purple One tough to handle. He left behind a messy estate and no will, and there are no clear-cut recognizable heirs. In all, it’s been a year of confusion about what his legacy will be and who will maintain it. And yet it’s also been a year of grieving and acceptance. His music reappeared, as does the music of most superstars in the wake of their deaths. 

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