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A pioneer for muddying the waters between Jazz, Blues, Country, Soul, and Rock, Cassandra Wilson's greatest asset is her unmistakeable ardor.  Wilson's brilliant passion is reflected in her resoundingly beautiful voice; it is an untamed fire tempered only by over three decades of musical experience.

Brookyln-based ambient-folk duo Family Band is an unlikely collaboration between visual artist turned frontwoman Kim Krans and her husband, former heavy-metal guitarist Jonny Ollsin. Together, the couple craft beautifully dark, folk-influenced songs, which they fittingly describe as “heavy mellow.”

THEESatisfaction is the duo Stasia Irons "Stas" and Catherine Harris-White "Cat."

Somewhere between soul and rap lies a niche filled to overflowing by the dynamic voices of Stasia Irons and Catherine Harris-White.  Together, rapper Stasia ("Stas") and vocalist Catherine ("Cat") comprise the avante-garde hip-hop duo THEESatisfaction. Based out of Seattle, Washington, THEESatisfaction is a relatively young band with deep roots in the Black community.


Muddying the waters between indie rock, country, and  down-south blues, Diamond Rugs was formed in Nashville, a coagulation of musical talent assembled by John McCauley of Deer Tick fame.  McCauley originally approached artists Robbie Crowell (Deer Tick), Ian Saint Pe (The Black Lips), Steve Berlin (Los Lobos), Hardy Morris (Dead Confederate), and Bryan Dufresne (Six Finger Satellite) to collaborate on an album he was making, but his bandmates began adding songs of their own and Diamond Rugs became much more than just McCauley's pet project. 

Swedish singer-songwriter Kristian Matsson is the epitome of a modern-day troubadour.  With his crooning voice and folksy acoustic tunes he is compared to a stripped-down Bob Dylan. His influences include Nick Drake, Bob Dylan, Skip James, Sunhouse, and old bluegrass, as well as current music.
Matsson released his third full-length album under the moniker The Tallest Man on Earth, and has come alive playing solo - especially to live audiences.

Van Hunt uses his velvet-smooth voice to stunning effect in his rhymic, triste-laden melodies.  He is something like a cross between Thelonious Monk and Prince - throaty and suave, yet artistic, bold, and (notably) a little bit weird.  His alternative style is his strength, however. 

Grammy award-winning Latin music producer and music industry veteran Aaron Levinson joins WXPN’s David Dye for this seventeenth segment of the Latin Roots music series. Levinson is a Philadelphia native and started his music career at Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts. He has a background as a musician and composer and is an ASCAP-affiliated songwriter/ publisher and former governor of the Philadelphia chapter of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.

JD McPherson was lucky to have been born in Broken Arrow, OK. Just a stone's throw away from the pulsing art hub that is Tulsa, OK (where he would attend university), JD was able to tap into his creative side at a very young age.  An eclectic artist, JD took classes in everything from film to card magic en route to an M.F.A., playing in various bands all the while.

Sara Watkins is more than just a pretty face.  The former Nickel Creek fiddler is also a musical protege, playing the guitar, mandolin, and ukulele with dashing abandon.  And that's not even mentioning her voice, which is earthy and convincingly conveys the heartwrenching emotion of her beautiful and (as of recent) self-written lyrics. 

Best Coast is surf pop - a genre of high-bass, lo-fi pop music that is probably most recognizable (to those not "in the know") from the ending scene of Pulp Fiction. Historians had posited that surf pop died out with the Beach Boys, but Best Coast throws that speculation right out the window.  Vocalist and guitar-jammer Bethany Cosentino and the multi-talented musician Bobb Bruno combine to bring their breathtakingly easygoing music to the ears of millions of listeners across the states and beyond. 

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