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The shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic hit musicians hard, with concert halls and rehearsal spaces shuttered and silent. But a new music initiative from the Library of Congress embraces the constraints of COVID-19. The series is a collection of 10 videos of 10 different original compositions that will premiere online starting Monday, June 15. It's called the Boccaccio Project.

Last time on Play It Forward, our musical chain of gratitude, R&B singer and producer Georgia Anne Muldrow raved about the saxophonist Lakecia Benjamin. They share a few things in common: Both studied together at The New School's School of Jazz and Contemporary Music, both tap a similar spiritual vein in their music and as Muldrow sees it, both are "sangin' " even if it's through different mediums.

Updated at 4:14 p.m. ET

The country band Lady Antebellum has changed its name to Lady A, saying that its members are "regretful and embarrassed" that they had not previously considered the loaded history of the term.

Jimmy Heath made one of his first appearances on record as a member of Dizzy Gillespie's band, late in 1949. Released on Capitol under the title Dizzy Gillespie And His Orchestra, it featured Heath on alto saxophone alongside his fellow Philadelphian, an up-and-comer named John Coltrane.

Face shields are critical gear for those on the front line of the ongoing coronavirus crisis. But like other pieces of PPE, they often still aren't available. But one volunteer group, using 3D printers at home, has made nearly 40,000 NIH-approved face shields for health care workers and first responders — from New Jersey to the Navajo Nation.

Updated Thursday at 6:28 p.m. ET

The popular annual music festival Coachella and its country music sibling, Stagecoach, have both been canceled for 2020.

While the events' promoter, Goldenvoice, has not yet made a public announcement, the cancellation order was released Wednesday evening by the public health officer of Riverside County, Calif.

George Floyd was buried in his hometown of Houston, Texas, this week. Floyd left his mark on the city through his friends and family, but also through the music he made under the name Big Floyd.

George Floyd grew up in Houston's Third Ward — the home of the city's hip-hop and rap scene. Floyd used to spend hours in producer DjD's home studio, making the kind of slow-the-music-down form of rap made famous by the late DJ Screw, who also knew and worked with Floyd.

Updated at 4:00 p.m. ET

On Wednesday morning, the Recording Academy, which gives out the Grammy Awards, announced a few changes to the prizes — and to the way it structures its voting process. On social media, critics and fans immediately took up debating the most obvious shifts.

Across the country, music venues remain closed due to the pandemic — and according to a new survey, 90 percent of independent venue owners, promoters and bookers say that they will have to close permanently within the next few months, if they can't get an infusion of targeted government funding.

Bonnie Pointer, a Grammy-winning singer and songwriter who was a founding member of vocal group the Pointer Sisters, has died at the age of 69. Her death was announced in a statement that included a remembrance from her older sister, Anita Pointer. "Bonnie was my best friend and we talked every day; we never had a fight in our life. I already miss her, and I will see her again one day." No cause was given.

Since its inception in 2014, the Tiny Desk Contest has introduced us to so many talented up-and-coming artists.

The hip-hop duo Run the Jewels is keenly aware of what's going on in the world around them.

One of the casualties of the COVID-19 shutdown has been live music. When authorities banned large gatherings in March, the music industry as a whole came to a virtual standstill for several weeks.

Things slowly things started to change as artists began offering performances from their homes but venues still remain closed, major festivals have been canceled and tours large and small are on an indefinite hold.

Zeshan Bagewadi is in many ways, a classic soul singer. As Zeshan B, he channels the music of Sam Cooke, Marvin Gaye and Otis Redding. His signature, though, is combining that classic soul sound with lyrics that pay tribute to his South Asian roots. On his latest album, Melismatic, his first collection of entirely original compositions, he sings in both English and Urdu.

The last week of protests and unrest has put many Americans on edge, especially those in communities of color. Some local leaders, like Sharon Kay, are using the airwaves to help organize and inform their communities.

It had been a long, hot day of protests in Washington, D.C. As dusk descended on the nation's capital on June 3, a man in the crowd held up a microphone. The man, Maryland-based singer Kenny Sway, asked the protestors to kneel — and to turn on their cell phone flashlights.

"I asked them if we can light the city up tonight," Sway says.

When Mickey Guyton signed a Nashville record deal nearly a decade ago, after growing up in Texas on Dolly Parton and Whitney Houston and doing a bit of work in the LA entertainment industry, she approached the country music scene with tremendous respect. Cognizant of her newbie status, she showed how serious she was about becoming a part of that professional community by learning its culture and customs and taking its conventional wisdom to heart. Soon, she came to see what she was actually up against.

As technology evolves, so does protest. Awareness of George Floyd's killing at the hands of Minneapolis police officers could only inspire an international grassroots movement because a teenager, Darnella Frazier, decided to record his arrest using her phone and post it to social media. Activists are organizing marches and rallies on Twitter and Instagram, even as they warn participants to be careful of surveillance on those platforms.

Candelas Guitars, a neighborhood fixture in East Los Angeles, has been hit hard by the coronavirus shutdown.

The shop has been serving customers since 1947, and Tomás Delgado says his family has been making guitars in Los Angeles for three generations. But the business, named after Delgado's great-uncle Candelario, dates back even further, when his family lived in Mexico.

Marc Rebillet was supposed to be on tour this summer, playing electronic music at festivals throughout the United States and Europe.

"Of course, those have been canceled," the New York City-based musician said.

As COVID-19 sweeps across the world, musicians have been forced to postpone, reschedule or cancel tours altogether, leaving countless artists struggling to maintain their livelihoods.

For Rebillet, bidding farewell to live shows means he is not only losing ticket sales, but also the force that fueled his work.

A day after the music industry blacked itself out en masse, Warner Music Group, one of the world's three major record labels, announced today that it is back to business in a big way. But not as usual. As of today, the conglomerate will be a publicly traded company.

Amidst widespread protests against the very systems that Killer Mike and El-P rap about tearing down, Run the Jewels released its fourth album, RTJ4, by surprise at 12 p.m. ET Wednesday, June 3. The album is available on streaming services and as a free download on the group's website.

Over her decades-long career, Tracee Ellis Ross has starred in beloved shows such as Black-ish and Girlfriends. But as she sees it, her latest role is her most daunting one yet. In The High Note, available to stream on Apple TV on May 29, she plays a superstar singer named Grace Davis, who's facing career stagnancy. Meanwhile, Davis' personal assistant Maggie (played by Dakota Johnson) has musical ambitions of her own as an aspiring producer.

YouTube

Kimmel and Colbert, Bee and Fallon et al., pay attention: Elmo did not come to play.

Bright Eyes has shared "One and Done," the third single released in anticipation of the band's forthcoming new album, set for release sometime this year.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Steve Earle is a star of what's sometimes called Americana music or alt-country. He sings of Americans who often live on the edge. One of his hits tells of a grandson of Appalachian moonshiners who turns to drug dealer.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "COPPERHEAD ROAD")

STEVE EARLE: (Singing) You better stay away from Copperhead Road.

INSKEEP: Another character is a lifelong criminal who is trapped in an alley and decides, for the first time, to pray.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "TOM AMES' PRAYER")

Jimmy Cobb, whose subtle and steady drumming formed the pulse of some of jazz's most beloved recordings, died at his home in Manhattan on Sunday. He was 91.

The cause was lung cancer, says his wife, Eleana Tee Cobb.

Cobb was the last surviving member of what's often called Miles Davis' First Great Sextet. He held that title for almost three decades, serving as a conduit for many generations of jazz fans into the band that recorded the music's most iconic and enduring album, Kind of Blue.

On her latest EP, Noah Cyrus wants you to know that you're not alone in feeling alone. Blending the spirit of classic country music with the sensibilities of today's pop, it's called The End of Everything — which feels like a good title for this moment.

Noah comes from quite the musical family, but now, with songs like "July" and "I Got So High That I Saw Jesus," she's finding her own voice.

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