KTEP - El Paso, Texas

Music News

Less than a year ago, nobody knew the name Lil Nas X. Now, his song "Old Town Road" has set the record for longest time spent atop the Hot 100 singles chart.

Woodstock 50, the music festival intended as a celebration of the era-defining 1969 concert, has instead spent months unravelling in public. Now, if it takes place at all, the festival won't take place in the same area of upstate New York as the original Woodstock. In fact, it won't take place in New York at all, or even an adjacent state.

Seth Hurwitz, chairman of the mid-Atlantic concert promotion company I.M.P., said Thursday that the organizers of Woodstock 50 have approached the Columbia, Md., venue Merriweather Post Pavilion about hosting the event.

Updated Aug. 1 at 8:14 p.m. ET

Opera star David Daniels has been indicted in Texas on a felony charge of sexual assault.

A grand jury indicted Daniels in Harris County District Court on July 25. Also indicted on the same charge is Daniels' husband, William Walters, who goes by the name Scott. In Texas, sexual assault of an adult is a Class 2 felony; if convicted, Daniels and Walter could face between two and 20 years in prison.

Since his first glimmers of internet notoriety, Chance the Rapper has been hailed as the kind of wunderkind to turn the music industry on its head. From the nasal-toned phenom who made good use of a lengthy school suspension for his 2012 debut mixtape, 10 Day, to the savvy verse maestro who kept the emphasis on his friendships with 2013's Acid Rap and the 2015 collaborative album Surf, the most endearing quality about Chance is that he's always done things his own way and on his own time.

This story is part of American Anthem, a yearlong series on songs that rouse, unite, celebrate and call to action. Find more at NPR.org/Anthem.


The earliest anthems were sacred hymns, religious songs of praise. For this installment of NPR's American Anthem series, we examine a rock and roll hymn — from Ireland.

Hello, Brave New World!

Jul 26, 2019

8:02 a.m., July 12, 2019

Dear me (hopefully),

I don't even know if you'll be able to see this note, but I'll write it anyway, because I really need your help.

Authorities in Sweden have charged rapper A$AP Rocky with assault in connection with an altercation last month in Stockholm — a case that has rallied celebrities such as Kim Kardashian and Justin Bieber and even a personal intervention from President Trump.

The musician and record producer, whose real name is Rakim Mayers, was detained along with two others by police following a street brawl in the Swedish capital, where the rapper was on tour.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

NOEL KING, HOST:

Rapper Meek Mill has been granted a new trial by a three-judge appeals court panel in Pennsylvania, for a case that dates back 12 years. The only witness who testified against Meek was a police officer who was later found to have committed theft.

"The Commonwealth concedes a new trial is required," the judges' unanimous opinion stated, in light of "after-discovered evidence" about the police officer's conduct.

Have you ever had a roommate sell your stuff while you were on vacation? But instead of a ratty couch that won't nearly pay rent, it's super-intimate letters and recordings that you'd never want anyone to read or hear, like, ever? Madonna feels your pain.

A guitar band from Mali called Tinariwen is famous worldwide. The group's fans and collaborators have included Robert Plant, Thom Yorke of Radiohead, Bono of U2 and Nels Cline of Wilco. The band has fought extremism in their home country of Mali, and been victims themselves.

Cincinnati Opera has premiered a new opera that chronicles the stories of six people wrongfully convicted in Ohio and in the process, puts America's criminal justice system on trial. The new opera Blind Injustice is based on a book of the same title by Mark Godsey, a former prosecutor and law professor at the University of Cincinnati.

One of New Orleans' iconic musicians has died. Art Neville — a founding member of both the Meters and the Neville Brothers, died Monday at age 81. His death was confirmed by his nephew Ivan Neville (the son of Art's brother, Aaron) and his manager of two decades, Kent Sorrell. According to Nola.com, he had been in declining health for years.

Lil Nas X's "Old Town Road" rode right into its 16th week at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 today, tying the record for longest consecutive time in the top spot.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

SARAH MCCAMMON, HOST:

And finally today, one of the definitive songs of the summer so far has been "Old Town Road" by Lil Nas X.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "OLD TOWN ROAD")

In his vast catalog of music, Radiohead's Thom Yorke has trembled like a broken man on his knees. He has screamed in tormented six-part harmony; he has manic-whispered diaries worth of existential fear. Still, he just can't shake the techno-dread. Most recently, that dread has manifested in Yorke's third solo project, ANIMA, released on June 27.

YouTube

After a year of build-up, King Princess has finally announced her debut album, Cheap Queen, and dropped its s

In 1985, a team of country-music legends formed The Highwaymen, a supergroup combining the talents of Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Kris Kristofferson.

The Lion King: The Gift, Beyoncé's executive-produced album inspired by the 2019 motion picture, has been delivered.

Ready for more Disney déjà vu? The Lion King is the latest software update to one of Disney's beloved animated movies, this time featuring photo-realistic graphics — and Beyoncé. The musical performances are all new, but it's the same classic songs by Elton John and Tim Rice, and composer Hans Zimmer also returned to Pride Rock with an upgraded version of his Oscar-winning score from 25 years ago.

If you're an artist looking to break chart records in the streaming era, your best weapon might just be quantity.

Keep ya head up, Jerry Foxhoven.

The public servant who led Iowa's Department of Human Services was forced to resign in June, just one business day after he sent an email to more than 4,000 agency employees that included an inspirational quote from the rapper Tupac Shakur.

He used his love of rap from time to time to "reach out to our staff, tell them that I'm human, have a little levity," he tells NPR.

YouTube

Amid the most crucial political crisis to hit Puerto Rico in its modern history, three Puerto Rican musicians have released a protest song that is spreading across the island as fast a

Embattled R&B singer R. Kelly pleaded not guilty in a Chicago courtroom Tuesday to 13 federal charges, including child pornography and obstruction of justice.

One of the most celebrated voices in modern South African music has died. Singer, dancer and activist Johnny Clegg, who co-founded two groundbreaking, racially mixed bands during the apartheid era, died Tuesday in Johannesburg at age 66. He had battled pancreatic cancer since 2015.

His death was announced by his manager and family spokesperson, Roddy Quin.

Clegg wrote his 1987 song "Asimbonanga" for Nelson Mandela. It became an anthem for South Africa's freedom fighters.

YouTube

Joan Shelley will release a new album later this year called Like the River Loves the Sea, a collecti

Wilco has announced it'll release the band's 11th studio album later this year. Drawing its title from the poetry of Friedrich Schiller — and Beethoven's Ninth symphony — Wilco's Ode to Joy will feature what frontman Jeff Tweedy calls "really big, big folk songs," including the album's first single, "Love is Everywhere (Beware)."

On this episode of All Songs Considered we've got a conversation with GoldLink about his latest album, Diaspora. (Hear the full interview with the play button at the top of the page).

When Menzi Mngoma decided to get a job as an Uber driver, it was mostly out of necessity. The 27-year-old has a fiancé, kids and his parents to support, and his life's passion, opera, wasn't paying the bills. But he was also making a bet. "You need to be well-connected to go overseas," he told NPR. Though he's currently based in Durban, South Africa, Mngoma dreams of becoming an international musical sensation; he thought that driving Uber might help him make connections with people who could further his career.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Pages