sun 14/08/2022

New Music Interviews

theartsdesk Q&A: Musician Cosmo Jarvis

Thomas H Green

Cosmo Jarvis (b 1989) was born in New Jersey but grew up in Devon. He has produced two albums, Humasyouhitch/Sonofabitch (2009) and Is The World Strange or Am I Strange? (2011), that combine incisive lyricism, goofy humour, rap, rock, terrace-chant choruses, studio orchestration and an unlikely fusion of musical styles, sometimes more jovially eccentric than hip.

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theartsdesk Q&A: Musician Judith Owen and Actor Harry Shearer

Russ Coffey

You may know Harry Shearer better as Montgomery Burns from The Simpsons. His wife, Judith Owen, is as well known for her recent stage show with Ruby Wax, Losing It, as her own albums. But though they may have limited street recognisability, in the three cities they call home they are legendary for their hospitality.

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theartsdesk Q&A: Musician Esperanza Spalding

peter Quinn

Bassist, vocalist and composer, Esperanza Spalding is one of the most exciting things to happen to jazz in recent memory. Born and raised on what she has called “the other side of the tracks” in Portland, Oregon, Spalding grew up in a single-parent home.

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theartsdesk Q&A: Musician Seasick Steve

Thomas H Green

Seasick Steve Wold (b 1941) has achieved widespread popularity over the last five years with his raw, rootsy, blues-flavoured sounds. He's also renowned for his customised guitars, such as one featured on his new album, You Can't Teach an Old Dog New Tricks, that's made from Morris Minor hubcaps, and for his stage patter which combines US Southern charm with hobo lore and anecdotes.

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Q&A Special: Electronic Musicians Bonjay

Paul McGee Bonjay's Ian Swain and Alanna Stuart take a break from bass-heavy dancehall futurism

A potent combination of growling electronics, sub-bass frequencies and expressive vocals seems to have moved back to the centre of the UK's pop landscape in recent months, whether via the likes of James Blake, Magnetic Man or even the unlikely sound of Britney Spears appropriating dubstep signifiers on her new record. All of which makes the arrival in the UK of Canadian duo Bonjay seem...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Musician Moby

Thomas H Green Moby, punk, electronic orchestrator and self-confessed nerd

Moby (b 1965) has been a presence on the dance scene and in global clubland for two decades. He is best known for the multimillion-selling 1999 album Play which, among other things, combined lush electronic orchestration with old field recordings of a cappella blues shouters. Moby's musical career, however, began at least a decade earlier.

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theartsdesk Q&A: Musician Martin Carthy

graeme Thomson

One of Britain’s most esteemed and influential folk artists, Martin Carthy (b 1941) celebrates his 70th birthday on 21 May. The occasion is being marked by the release of a two-disc career overview, Martin Carthy Essential, and next weekend's celebratory concert at the Southbank Centre, London.

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Q&A Special: Musician Mary Gauthier

Tim Cumming

The Foundling Museum in Bloomsbury preserves the story of the Foundling Hospital, established in 1739 by Thomas Coram, the artist Hogarth and the composer Handel. At the end of April, American country singer Mary Gauthier performed The Foundling, a concept album telling of her birth and adoption in 1962 and the attempted reunion with her birth mother some 45 years later.

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theartsdesk Q&A: Electronic Musicians Hype Williams

joe Muggs Inga Copeland and Dean Blunt aka Hype Williams

The music of Hype Williams is the definition of an acquired taste. It sounds ramshackle, thrown together, deliberately awkward – either deeply contrarian or the work of very, very messed-up people just playing around with archaic home recording equipment. But immersion in it reveals all kinds of layers of strangeness, and particularly a rich and emotionally resonant sense of melody that weaves through all the clashing rhythms and crackly recordings. Even the arrangements, it becomes apparent...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Pop Musicians The Human League

Thomas H Green

The Human League are one of the brightest lights in the history of electro-pop

They have had many incarnations over the years but since late 1980 the core of the group has been frontman Philip Oakey (b 1955) and singers Joanne Catherall (b 1962) and Susan Sulley (b 1963).

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