Music

Update, Nov. 16 at 2:54 PM: This post has been updated to include a statement from the medical examiner.

Update, Dec. 8 at 7:45 PM: This post has been updated to include the results of the toxicology report. The original story continues after the first paragraph.

This past Monday evening, hundreds of supporters showed up outside Philadelphia's Criminal Justice Center to protest a ruling that sent rapper Meek Mill back to prison over violations of his probation. There was signage, chanting and hashtags (#FreeMeek and #RallyForMeek) associated with the demonstration in hopes of getting the event trending online.

On a sunny, late-September afternoon in the garden of a guesthouse in Kabul, just beyond the armed guard at the iron gate, a couple of girls are tuning up for guitar practice. All headscarves and concentration, they stretch tentative fingers along the strings. Their teacher, a 56-year-old musician from Los Angeles named Lanny Cordola, sports own head covering, a green doo-rag holding in check a graying ponytail that drifts down the middle of his back.

Updated 8:41 a.m., Tue., Nov. 14.

The band Brand New is postponing its comeback tour of the U.K. following accusations of sexual misconduct against its singer, Jesse Lacey, made public last week on social media.

The 18th Annual Latin Grammy Awards are set to air live from Las Vegas on Thursday, Nov. 16. Alt.Latino's Felix Contreras visits the show to give his predictions — and some possible predicaments — ahead of this year's ceremony.

When songwriter David Yazbek, whose mother is Jewish and father Lebanese, decided to write a musical that fused his two cultural backgrounds, he knew he didn't want it to be about tribal conflict.

His new Broadway show, The Band's Visit, attempts to do something that seems almost unfashionable: look at two historically antagonistic cultures and tell a story about their commonality.

The Country Music Association Awards ceremony was Wednesday, but people are still talking about the show because of what wasn't said that night. The CMA tried to create a politics-free zone for hosts Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley, and for reporters covering the event.

Digital lip-syncing aimed at teens is officially a big, big business: Chinese tech company Bytedance has announced it plans to "merge" with — acquire — Musical.ly, a popular lip-synching app launched in China in 2013.

Financial terms of the deal weren't included in today's announcement, but news reports put the deal's value at between $800 million and $1 billion.

For decades now, country's aesthetic and ideological sensibilities have been shaped as much by the music's modern, middle-class suburban appeal as its rural working-class roots, which can make for quite the rhetorical push-and-pull (likely one of many factors that contributed to the Dixie Chicks' famed expulsion from the format over voicing distaste for the second President Bush during a U.K. concert). Working-class political speech hasn't always been recognized as political at all; it's just as likely to be dismissed as class resentment.

Ruth Laredo On Piano Jazz

Nov 10, 2017

One of the premier classical pianists of her generation, Ruth Laredo (1937–2005) was known as America's First Lady of the Piano. In partnership with Marian McPartland and Dick Hyman, Laredo produced wildly popular Three Piano Crossover Concerts, exploring the boundaries between classical music and jazz.

Eminem And Beyoncé 'Walk On Water'

Nov 10, 2017

The mysterious rollout of Eminem's Revival, his upcoming album and first in four years, has brought out its biggest guns yet with the release of new song, "Walk on Water," by summoning the Queen Bey herself.

Benjamin Zander: How Does Music Transform Us?

Nov 10, 2017

Part 5 of the TED Radio Hour episode How Art Changes Us.

About Benjamin Zander's TED Talk

Years of conducting a world-famous orchestra have shown Benjamin Zander the power of classical music. He says music speaks to our emotions — and has the ability to reach everybody.

About Benjamin Zander

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Next, we're going to head to the opera house. There's a new show at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. It's "The Exterminating Angel" by Thomas Ades. And not long after the show starts, you hear this.

Terry Riley's In C might be considered one of the seminal pieces of minimalism, but at its heart it's an open invitation. The score resides on a single sheet of paper with 53 phrases to be repeated by an indefinite number of musicians.

Welcome back to the Caribbean, Alexander Hamilton: This morning, Lin-Manuel Miranda, the composer and lyricist of the Tony- and Pulitzer Prize-winning smash Hamilton: An American Musical, announced that he is taking the show to the University of Puerto Rico's campus in San Juan for a limited three-week run in January 2019.

Did Sean Combs Change His Name Again?

Nov 7, 2017

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Now to a news bulletin from Sean Combs, the rapper, entrepreneur and man of many names.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

SEAN COMBS: Hey, yo. What's up, y'all? I have some very serious, serious news.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Just four days before the release of her newest album, a letter from Taylor Swift's attorney demanding that a website retract and delete an article critical of her has drawn a sharp (but also winking) rebuke from the American Civil Liberties Union.

"We're here right now because no one ever really dies."

Coming from anyone other than the superproducer Pharrell Williams, that might've sounded like the opening incantation of some esoteric religious experience. But on Saturday night, Williams' pulpit was ComplexCon, where his genre-bending band N.E.R.D. made a surprise reveal.

Imagine a dinner party that never ends. The guests can't leave. That's the premise for Luis Buñuel's classic 1962 surrealist film The Exterminating Angel. It might seem an unlikely subject for an opera, but that's just what London-born composer Thomas Adès has brought to New York's Metropolitan Opera.

The Hebrew Psalms have inspired composers for thousands of years.

Now, New York's Lincoln Center is presenting The Psalms Experience, a festival of choral settings of all 150 Psalms by 150 different composers. It includes nine U.S. premieres.

Joe Hagan knew, before he typed out the first word of Sticky Fingers, his new biography of Rolling Stone founder Jann Wenner composed of endless access to Wenner and his extensive archives, and interviews with 240 others, that it would receive little love from its subject upon publication.

Joseph Meli, accused of defrauding some 130 investors of some $95 million in a scheme framed as the resale of tickets to Hamilton and other events, pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count of securities fraud. Previously he had entered a plea of not guilty to five counts of fraud and conspiracy.

Miguel Zenón was 12 when he first experienced the devastation of a major hurricane in his homeland, Puerto Rico. That was Hugo, which hit as a Category 3 in 1989, and drove nearly 30,000 residents from their homes.

Attorneys for three of Prince's six recognized heirs — Sharon, Norrine and John Nelson — have requested that Comerica Bank & Trust, which accepted its appointment as personal administrator to the legendary musician's estate on Dec. 7, 2016 and began performing that role in early February of this year, be stripped of its oversight.

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