Freshlyground has been one of the most talked about bands out of post-apartheid South Africa. One reason is the voice of lead singer Zolani Mahola. Mahola is a powerhouse; she and six other black and white musicians from around southern Africa make up the group. They came together in 2002 to forge a new sound, repackaging folk roots and classic African pop with a slick veneer of international pop production.
Originally published on Thu April 11, 2013 12:14 pm
I first met Thao Nguyen in 2008, in the earliest days of the Tiny Desk Concert series. I was a big fan of her witty, catchy songs. After she finished playing the Tiny Desk, Thao said something that has endeared me to her forever. Walking toward the elevators on her way out of NPR, she said, "That was intimate and awkward ... a lot like my last boyfriend!"
Originally published on Wed April 10, 2013 5:03 pm
Virtually everyone writing about the Tokyo String Quartet's final tour this year is drawn to the word "bittersweet," and with good reason: After 43 seasons, the group gave its farewell Boston concert last week at WGBH. The quartet is rising to the emotional occasion by playing with heightened finesse and dimension, sounding better than ever.