Showing Archived Posts

2012 Roots Roundup…

Posted December 28th, 2012 at 4:17 pm (UTC+0)
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By Katherine Cole This was a great year for fans of American roots music—so many fabulous releases from bands and solo artists new and old. Alabama Shakes is one of those new bands. 18 months ago, they were having a hard time selling out 500 seat clubs.   Now, they’ve got three Grammy nominations and […]

Jean-Luc Ponty, Master of Electric Violin

Posted December 23rd, 2012 at 5:18 am (UTC+0)

Ponty introduced a way to amplify violin sound, which attracted the attention of pop and rock stars

Some holiday music you may have missed….

Posted December 19th, 2012 at 9:26 pm (UTC+0)
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By Katherine Cole If you stick to mainstream media, you might believe that Taylor Swift or Mariah Carey are the only ones singing holiday songs. But that’s not true—in fact, there were a couple of very cool seasonal releases  that I want to make sure you know about. Because if you don’t hear about ’em […]

Keys, Please

Posted December 5th, 2012 at 7:19 pm (UTC+0)
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By Ray McDonald In my last blog entry, I wrote about  electric guitars…specifically, the Fender Stratocaster and the Gibson Les Paul. I had so much fun learning about these perennial favorites that I’d like to look at some other  building blocks of modern pop music. Today I’m looking at the electric piano and the Hammond […]

Farewell to a Penguin

Posted December 3rd, 2012 at 3:22 pm (UTC+0)
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By Doug Levine Does the name Cleve Duncan ring a bell?  What if I preface it by saying “founding member of the ‘50’s vocal quartet The Penguins” Cleve Duncan? Ok, so he wasn’t a household name, but Duncan, who died November 7 at age 77, sang lead on one of the most beloved doo-wop songs […]

Jason Mraz Makes History

Posted November 30th, 2012 at 3:02 pm (UTC+0)
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By Katherine Cole Jason Mraz has already made music history by winning two Grammy awards for his music, now the singer-songwriter is about to make world history! On December 16th, the 35-year-old singer will headline a free outdoor concert in People’s Square in Rangoon, Burma. The show will be at the base of the 2500 […]

Dionne Warwick Then and Now

Posted November 19th, 2012 at 6:48 pm (UTC+0)
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By Doug Levine I wasn’t thinking about singer Dionne Warwick until I saw that she had just released a new album called “Now.” Well, I couldn’t help myself. After giving it my undivided attention track by track, the verdict – mine, at least – Dionne is in fine form. Not that I ever doubted her […]

Dipping into the archives: Merl Saunders & Jerry Garcia

Posted November 15th, 2012 at 6:21 pm (UTC+0)

By Katherine Cole Every once in a while I stumble across an album that takes me totally by surprise. The latest is “Keystone Companions,” a live boxed set  from Grateful Dead founding member Jerry Garcia and his longtime friend, keyboard player Merl Saunders. The four discs that make up Keystone Companions were recorded during a […]

Musicians and politics—

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 7:13 pm (UTC+0)

By Katherine Cole In the aftermath of the LOOOONG US election campaign season, I wonder if celebrity endorsements make a difference in presidential elections. There certainly have been a lot of them this year, for both candidates. Actors, comedians, athletes, talk show hosts, super models. And there’ve certainly been a fare share of musicians joining […]

Choose Your Weapon

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 8:22 pm (UTC+0)
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By Ray McDonald From the time I bought my first Rolling Stones record at age seven, I’ve been convinced of one thing: you can’t rock without an electric guitar. Now don’t get me wrong, you don’t need one to make great music. There’s an entire galaxy of musical instruments out there to enjoy. But for  […]



VOA’s music bloggers bring you info about all kinds of music. Katherine Cole will keep you up-to-date on the world of Bluegrass and Americana music while Ray McDonald rocks the Pop charts and artists. Diaa Bekheet  jams with you on Jazz.  Visit us often. Your comments are welcome.



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