World Cafe

Sunday through Thursday at 10 p.m. on IPR News/Studio One and Monday through Saturday at 10 a.m. on Studio One online

Since 1991, host David Dye has been exploring the frontiers of contemporary music for his listeners on a daily basis. Featuring live performance and interviews with established and emerging artists from across the musical spectrum, "World Cafe" is public radio's most listened to contemporary music program.

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It's a middle-age milestone, dealing with a parent's death. Singer-songwriter Patty Griffin turns the experience into powerful moments on her latest album, American Kid. The album features songs inspired by everything from her dad exclaiming "Don't let me die in Florida!" to the gleam in her grandfather's eye on his own wedding day.

Villagers On World Cafe

Jun 7, 2013

Recording under the name Villagers, Dublin singer-songwriter Conor O'Brien released his debut album, Becoming a Jackal, in 2010. A critically acclaimed Mercury Prize nominee, that record was stripped-down singer-songwriter fare.

But O'Brien changed a bit during the two-plus years leading up to the release of {Awayland}. The songwriter had listened to lots of techno in the interim and approached the new album with Cinemascope ambitions.

Parquet Courts On World Cafe

Jun 5, 2013

Nonchalant raw riffage and perfect off-the-cuff lyrics are what attracted me to Light Up Gold, the second full-length album from the Brooklyn indie-rock band Parquet Courts.

On this edition of World Cafe, we were lucky enough to hear three new songs that were written after the release of Light Up Gold. We can't say what will become of them, but "Dear Ramona," in particular, is extraordinary.

Madeleine Peyroux started singing blues and jazz on the streets of Paris. Over the course of her career, Peyroux has released six albums, sold more than a million copies of her second record (Careless Love) and developed a following for her easygoing, Billie Holiday-tinged sound.

Next: The Oh Hellos

Jun 3, 2013

Tyler and Maggie Heath, siblings from San Marcos, Texas, self-released their independent album, Through the Deep, Dark Valley, in October of last year. It was the culmination of a collaboration that began a couple years ago, when they wrote their first song together — for their mom. She liked it, but more importantly, they liked the process.

British producer and singer Jamie Lidell is one of electronic music's funkiest solo practitioners. When Lidell visited World Cafe in 2006 to support his successful album Multiply, he told host David Dye that he had been called the "one-man human funk tornado" — a moniker he earns yet again in this session.

In this installment of World Cafe, Lidell plays songs from his latest self-titled album and discusses the process of making the record at his new home studio in Nashville.

Latin Roots: Canto Cardenche, The Sound Of Sorrow

May 30, 2013

Petula Clark's new album, Lost In You, is her first since 2004. The 80-year-old actress, singer and entertainer launched her career in film and on the radio; she even entertained the troops in WWII, and was later known for her worldwide hit "Downtown."

Red Baraat On World Cafe

May 29, 2013

At a Red Baraat show, the combination of Punjabi Bhangra music, New Orleans-style jazz, go-go and even hip-hop is so seamless — and the vibe of the party is so exuberant — that barriers fall down. That unique sound is what Red Baraat's leader, Sunny Jain, had in mind when he formed the band in Brooklyn in 2008.

Ivan and Alyosha started out as the duo of Tim Wilson and Ryan Carbary, with the band's name coming from characters in the Russian novel The Brothers Karamazov. The two met in 2007 and immediately attracted strong national praise for their first EP, The Verse, The Chorus.

Next: Ace Reporter

May 27, 2013

After a band breakup, musician Chris Snyder consoled himself with the challenge of what he called "the threesixfive project": a challenge to write a song every day for a year. This one-man band ended up with 10 songs that stuck, and those formed his debut album, Yearling.

The Brooklyn multi-instrumentalist eventually got a chance to revisit the recordings, which initially were little more than sketches, in an upstate New York studio. Listen to two songs from Yearling here.

The L.A. band Fitz & The Tantrums broke through in 2011 with its debut album, Picking Up the Pieces. Undeniable songs and exciting concerts led the group to festival dates and other high-profile live appearances around the world.

Boy On World Cafe

May 23, 2013

The Swiss-German duo Boy has enjoyed worldwide success with its charming debut album, Mutual Friends. Members Sonya Glass and Valeska Steiner met in 2005 at a six-week song workshop and quickly developed a rapport.

In this installment of World Cafe, the two discuss the nuances of writing in English, and describe how their friendship grew along with their musical success.

Mount Moriah is a rock band formed around the duo of guitarist Jenks Miller and singer Heather McEntire. Its second full-length album, the recent Miracle Temple, combines the strum and twang of Southern rock with vocals that hit hard emotionally.

On this installment of World Cafe, host David Dye discusses with McEntire the complexity of Mount Moriah's sound, as well as her push to explore the nuances in her vocals.

The National's rise has been slow and steady, to match the growth and evolution of its dour but beautiful rock sound. In this installment of World Cafe, the band tells host David Dye how sleep deprivation led its members to craft more straightforward songs on their new album, Trouble Will Find Me.

Next: Hanni El Khatib

May 20, 2013

Hanni El Khatib is a first-generation American who grew up with a Palestinian father and a Filipino mother in San Francisco. His music has origins in '50s and '60s soul, blues, R&B and garage rock, with all those influences filtered through an intense love of punk music.

Frightened Rabbit's Scott Hutchinson has been creating compelling, sometimes even uplifting, songs about abject failure since the Scottish band's first album, Sing the Greys, came out in 2006.

On this installment of World Cafe, Hutchinson tells host David Dye how the entire band was involved in writing lyrics for its new album, Pedestrian Verse. The singer also discusses Frightened Rabbit's unique experience during a recent tour of northern Scotland.

Latin Roots: Son Jarocho

May 16, 2013

Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside's music was raw and forthright from the beginning, when its album Dirty Radio came out in 2011. The Portland band captures the energy of early-'50s music, with blues and country influences that earned it a rockabilly designation early in its career.

RNDM On World Cafe

May 15, 2013

RNDM is a new band featuring Joseph Arthur, Pearl Jam bassist Jeff Ament and drummer Richard Stuverud. Ament and Arthur met when the latter opened for Pearl Jam on tour.

Ament tells World Cafe host David Dye that he was mesmerized by Arthur's ability to create band sounds by looping his guitar and vocals. He also describes how RNDM formed and explains the process behind creating its debut album, Acts.

In this installment of World Cafe, Bonnie 'Prince' Billy (the stage name of Will Oldham) and Dawn McCarthy perform their own versions of classic Everly Brothers songs — as heard on their latest album together, What the Brothers Sang.

Next: Laura Stevenson

May 13, 2013

Laura Stevenson describes herself as an "unfunny Woody Allen," which is another way of saying that her work channels her obsessions with death and doubt. On her third album, Wheel, she finds a way to make it all sound downright jaunty.

Stevenson came to her more folk leanings from roots in punk, as well as a musical family; her grandfather, choral director Harry Simeone, was responsible for "Little Drummer Boy." Listen to two songs from Wheel on this page.

Clive Davis On World Cafe

May 10, 2013

At 81, music mogul and Columbia Records president Clive Davis has slowed down just enough to write his autobiography, The Soundtrack of My Life. The book, which describes how he's consistently made hit records, has itself become a bestseller.

Rod Stewart On World Cafe

May 10, 2013

Rod Stewart has little to prove as a rock star. He's been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame twice, once solo and once with The Faces. More recently, he's had enormous success with a series of standards titled The Great American Songbook, and published an autobiography that inspired him to return to songwriting.

Calvin Cooke, Aubrey Ghent and brothers Darrick and Chuck Campbell are The Slide Brothers. The band's self-titled album debut album was produced by Robert Randolph, the spectacular young pedal-steel guitarist who became the first player from the Sacred Steel tradition to break out to a wider audience.

On this installment of World Café, the band plays three songs from its album and tells host David Dye about the difference between performing for the congregation at Church of the Living God and playing on club and concert stages.

It's easy to hear the steady growth in the music of Phosphorescent's Matthew Houck since the release of his band's 2009 Willie Nelson tribute album, To Willie. In 2011, Here's to Taking It Easy was a sprawling, languid epic written with his road band's performances in mind.

Seattle's Hey Marseilles formed around the collaboration between singer Matt Bishop and guitarist Nick Ward, back when the two were students at the University of Washington. The band has since grown into the septet that recorded Hey Marseilles' sincere and endearing new album, Lines We Trace.

Next: Treetop Flyers

May 6, 2013

The members of London's Treetop Flyers capture the sound of California folk-rock in the '60s on their debut album, The Mountain Moves. They met on the periphery of the London folk scene that gave the world Mumford & Sons and Laura Marling.

Australian singer-songwriter Nick Cave recently re-formed his band The Bad Seeds, minus founding member Mick Harvey on guitar, to record a new album called Push the Sky Away. On this installment of World Café, you'll hear a tremendous performance from the elegant, intensely emotive band.

Low On World Cafe

May 2, 2013

It's hard to find another band that's stayed as true to its vision as Low. Alan Sparhawk and Mimi Parker have been making Low records for 20 years now, and just released their 10th full-length album, The Invisible Way.