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Critical Karaoke

"Critical Karaoke" is a monthly show about music and the ideas it inspires. We also produce daily music history segments called "A Day in the Life." Both currently air on KRCC
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Now displaying: November, 2015

"A Day in the Life" is a 2-minute podcast about music, history, culture, and ideas.  We release at least one new episode every weekday on an incredible range of genres and artists.  We hope you enjoy these quick listens!

Nov 30, 2015

Today in 1949, Charlie "Bird" Parker recorded the album Charlie Parker With Strings.  What jazz standards did he perform and which pre-fame cult figure was also in the studio?  Find out on this "A Day in the Life."

Nov 26, 2015

It was on this day in 1942 that American rock guitarist, singer, and songwriter Jimi Hendrix was born. On today's "Day in the Life," we explore the devilish connection between Hendrix and such artists David Bowie, Metallica, and even Leonard Bernstein!

Nov 26, 2015

Today in 1915, American piano virtuoso Earl Wild was born.  A renowned interpreter of Rhapsody in Blue, he also pioneered live broadcasting--both on television and online.  Find out more on today's "A Day in the Life."

Nov 26, 2015

'Twas on this day in 1976 that the Sex Pistols' debut single, Anarchy in the UK, was released. Find out why it almost didn't happen on today's "A Day in the Life."

Nov 25, 2015

It was on this day in 1984 that Band Aid, a supergroup made up of anyone who was anyone in the early 1980's Brit Pop scene, recorded "Do they Know it's Christmas." Find out who was behind it and why on today's "A Day in the Life."

Nov 25, 2015

It was on this day in 1882 that Gilbert and Sullivan's comic opera Iolanthe debuted in London and New York. Was it merely a tale of fairy love or was it a political satire? Find out on today's "A Classical Day in the Life."

Nov 24, 2015

On this day, in 1960, American bassist and composer, Edgar Meyer was born. His work ranges from bluegrass to jazz and brings forth the often overlooked soloistic capacity of the double bass. What do renowned artists Béla Fleck, Joshua Bell, Yo-Yo Ma, and Jerry Douglas have in common? Find out on today's "A Classical Day in the Life."

Nov 24, 2015

On this day in 1974, Elton John and John Lennon rehearsed for an upcoming Thanksgiving Day concert at Madison Square Garden. Why did John Lennon agree to do a special appearance at an Elton John show and which Paul McCartney tune did Lennon cover at the end of the concert? All will be revealed on today's "A Day in the Life."

Nov 23, 2015

On this day in 2004, Nova Scotia native and sometime Broken Social Scene member,  Feist released her single, "Mushaboom."  What does the name reference and what are the origins of the word?  Find out all this and more on today's "A Day in the Life."   

Nov 20, 2015

Today in 1889 witnessed the premiere of Gustav Mahler's first symphony.  The sonic combination of birdsong, peasant dances, arresting melodies, and distant fanfares set the stage for all future works by this late-Romantic composer.  Today's "A Classical Day in the Life" explores all of this as well as Mahler's unsettling incorporation of Frère Jacques.

Nov 20, 2015

Today in 1936 American novelist and essayist Don DeLillo was born in the Bronx.  Hear an excerpt from his novel Great Jones Street, possibly modeled on Bob Dylan, and find out which indie rock band borrowed its name from the novel White Noise on today's "A Day in the Life."

Nov 19, 2015

Today in 1990 pop superstar duo Milli Vanilli was stripped of their Grammy Award for Best New Artist.  How might their fate have been different had they come along a decade later after the advent of Auto-Tune?  Find out on today's "A Day in the Life."

Nov 18, 2015

Today's "A Classical Day in the Life" explores the sprawling musical world of author Margaret Atwood, born on this day in 1939.  We journey from high school musicals, to Elvis, to her "Letter to America," to the operatic stage.

 

Nov 18, 2015

Today in 2005 the Hollywood biopic Walk the Line about the life and career of Johnny Cash premiered in the United States.  Mainstream films about country music are rare and it took more than ten years to make this one, find out why on today's "A Day in the Life."

Nov 17, 2015

Today in 1558, Queen Elizabeth I ascended the throne of England.  Nicknamed Oriana, the queen created a fostering environment for music during her 44-year reign.  Who were the leading figures of this so-called Elizabethan era?  Find out on today's "A Day in the Life."

Nov 17, 2015

Today in 1938, Canadian singer/songwriter Gordon Lightfoot was born in Toronto.  He made his debut in 4th grade over the school's PA system and would go on to author the classic song "Early Morning Rain."  What else should you know about Lightfoot?  Find out on today's "A Day in the Life." 

Nov 16, 2015

Ray Charles held the #1 spot on the US Billboard Hot 100 today in 1960, with a song titled "Georgia On My Mind."  Where does the song come from, why did Charles record this cover, and who else has recorded it?  Find out today on "A Day in the Life."

Nov 16, 2015

Today in 1900 Philadelphia Orchestra performed its first concert at the Academy of Music.  Today's "A Day in the Life" explores the music of this debut performance--including works by Goldmark, Beethoven, and Tchaikovsky--and considers how the ensemble eventually found its signature "Philadelphia Sound."

Nov 15, 2015

What do you listen to and talk about when you have limitless access to music?  

These days we can fire up our computers, or our portable devices, or our phones and have access to basically any song or composition we want--access to the whole archive of recorded sound.

Joining us this episode for a discussion about the “infinite playlist” is music critic, essayist, novelist, and all around pop-culture guru, Chuck Klosterman.

We journey from Beirut to Ryan Adams, T Swift to Fetty Wap, Billy Joel to Radiohead--and many places in between.  All that and a special "infinite" band name pop quiz on this episode of Critical Karaoke!

Nov 12, 2015

Walt Disney’s animated musical offering Fantasia premiered in New York City on this day in 1940. How was the film audiences encountered then differ from the one we know today? Find out on today’s “A Day in the Life.”

Nov 12, 2015

Today in 1980, Voyager I made its closest approach to Saturn, using the planet's gravity to slingshot its way towards interstellar space--offering the perfect opportunity to consider the music of Gustav Holst and Sun Ra on today's "A Day in the Life."

Nov 11, 2015

Author Kurt Vonnegut was born on this day in 1922.  He once remarked "Music is to me, proof of the existence of God."  What genre of music was his favorite?  Find out on today's "A Day in the Life."

Nov 10, 2015

Children's television program Sesame Street debuted on PBS on this day in 1969.  Today's "Day in the Life" considers musical Muppets from the past as well as the pop-song inspiration for the Sesame Street theme song.

Nov 9, 2015

The first issue of Rolling Stone was published on this day in 1967 in San Francisco.  Today's "A Day in the Life" explores the musical origins of the publication's title and shares fun facts such as who was on that first cover and how much it cost.

Nov 6, 2015

Sonic Space Voyager Edgar Varese passed away on this day in 1965.  Matthew Mugmon explores just what this means and why Frank Zappa was such a fan in today's "A Day in the Life.”

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