Music Bank

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Liz Phair

Posted on May 18, 2021 in 90s, ALTERNATIVE, Indie, Singer/Songwriter

Growing out of the American underground of the late ’80s, Liz Phair fused lo-fi indie rock production techniques with the sensibility and structure of classic singer/songwriters. Exile in Guyville, her gold-selling debut album, was enthusiastically praised upon its 1993 release, and spawned a rash of imitators during the following years, particularly American female singer/songwriters…

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Jimmy Reed

Posted on May 12, 2021 in 50s, BLUES, Chicago Blues, Rhythm & Blues

There’s simply no sound in the blues as easily digestible, accessible, instantly recognizable, and as easy to play and sing as the music of Jimmy Reed. His best-known songs — “Baby, What You Want Me to Do,” “Bright Lights, Big City,” “Honest I Do,” “You Don’t Have to Go,” “Going to New York,” “Ain’t That Lovin’ You Baby,” and “Big Boss Man” — have become such an integral part of the standard blues repertoire, it’s almost as if they have existed forever…

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Dionne Warwick

Posted on May 6, 2021 in 60s, ROCK/POP

Marie Dionne Warrick was born into a gospel music family. Her father was a gospel record promoter for Chess Records and her mother managed the Drinkard Singers, a gospel group consisting of her relatives. She first raised her voice in song at age six at the New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey, and soon after was a member of the choir. As a teenager, she formed a singing group called the Gospelaires with her sister Dee Dee and her aunt Cissy Houston (later the mother of the late Whitney Houston)…

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The Charlatans

Posted on May 1, 2021 in 90s, ALTERNATIVE, Britpop, Dance, Indie

For many years, the Charlatans were perceived as the also-rans of Madchester, the group that didn’t capture the Zeitgeist like the Stone Roses, or that failed to match the mad genre-bending of Happy Mondays. Of course, they were more traditional than either of their peers. Working from a Stonesy foundation, the Charlatans added dance-oriented rhythms and layers of swirling organs straight out of ’60s psychedelia…

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Rufus Thomas

Posted on Apr 27, 2021 in 60s, Atlantic/Stax, Funk, Northern Soul, Rhythm & Blues, SOUL

Few of rock & roll’s founding figures are as likable as Rufus Thomas. From the 1940s onward, he has personified Memphis music … As a recording artist, he wasn’t a major innovator, but he could always be depended upon for some good, silly, and/or outrageous fun with his soul dance tunes. He was one of the few rock or soul stars to reach his commercial and artistic peak in middle age, and was a crucial mentor to many important Memphis blues, rock, and soul musicians…

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Thompson Twins

Posted on Apr 23, 2021 in 80s, New Wave, ROCK/POP, Synthpop

By appealing to fans of ’80s dance-pop as well as post-punk and new wave, the Thompson Twins were one of the more popular synth pop groups of the early MTV era, scoring a handful of hits in the early to mid-’80s. Neither a duo nor related, but rather named after characters in the Tintin cartoon, the band enjoyed international success with songs like “Hold Me Now,” “Lay Your Hands on Me,” and “King for a Day” — all U.S. Top Ten hits…

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Jay Farrar

Posted on Apr 19, 2021 in 00s, Alt-country, Americana

As a founding member of Uncle Tupelo and Son Volt, songwriter Jay Farrar helped popularize the alt-country movement of the 1990s. He also launched a solo career during the following decade, making it plain that his musical ambitions stretched far beyond the retro-leaning twang of his contemporaries. Farrar was born and raised in Belleville, Illinois… He was 12 when he first began leaning to play the guitar…

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Elephant 6

Posted on Apr 14, 2021 in 90s, ALTERNATIVE

Elephant 6 is a loosely defined musical collective in the United States. Notable bands associated with the collective include the Apples in Stereo, Beulah, Circulatory System, Elf Power, the Minders, Neutral Milk Hotel, of Montreal, and the Olivia Tremor Control. Although there are many different genres explored by bands in the collective, there is a shared interest in psychedelic pop of the 1960s…

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Jackie Wilson

Posted on Apr 10, 2021 in 50s, Northern Soul, Rhythm & Blues, ROCK/POP, SOUL

Jackie Wilson was one of the most important agents of black pop’s transition from R&B into soul. In terms of vocal power (especially in the upper register), few could outdo him; he was also an electrifying on-stage showman. He was a consistent hitmaker from the mid-’50s through the early ’70s, although never a crossover superstar…

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Maxïmo Park

Posted on Apr 6, 2021 in 00s, ALTERNATIVE, Indie

One of the more enduring bands from the post-punk revival of the early to mid-2000s, Maxïmo Park craft smart, sharply catchy guitar pop songs. Like their friends and neighbors Field Music and the Futureheads, they took inspiration from legends like the Jam, XTC, Wire, and the Smiths. Unlike many of their peers, frontman Paul Smith’s heartfelt vocals and lyrics added an emotional pull to their music, especially on their 2005 Mercury Prize-nominated debut, A Certain Trigger…

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