Country singers generally romanticize small-town life. But in her hit single, "Merry Go 'Round," from her major-label debut Same Trailer Different Park, Kacey Musgraves does nothing of the sort. It's a remarkable song, but it actually pales alongside others on her great new album.
It was a cool, clear night in Austin, Texas, as the 2013 South by Southwest music festival was nearing its end. Bassist Chris Slorach, guitarist Alex Edkins and drummer Hayden Menzies — three affable guys from Canada who make up the band Metz — strode onto the stage at Bar 96 for Filter Magazine's Dr. Martens Showcase and unleashed a torrent of hardcore guitar noise and brutal drumming that, in an instant, reconfigured everyone's night.
Rap and hip-hop were both a driving force, and a coping mechanism, for people in the Middle East and North Africa during the Arab Spring. In particular, the music of Tupac Shakur resonates with Arabs, long after the U.S. rapper's own death. But why? Michel Martin looks for an answer, along with Khaled M, a Libyan-American rapper.