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By Wesley Case, The Baltimore Sun | December 11, 2013
Last year, Lupe Fiasco found himself in the middle of a hot-button debate in hip-hop. His single at the time, "Bitch Bad," explicitly confronted the culture's knotty issues with misogyny, language and gender roles. The chorus begins with the song's title, but finishes with Fiasco adding, "'Woman' good, 'Lady' better. " The 31-year-old Chicago rapper thought he was initiating a healthy conversation, but some felt the rapper's tone was self-righteous to the point of sabotage. ("Lupe Fiasco mansplains misogyny on counterproductive" single, read Spin magazine's headline.)
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ENTERTAINMENT
By Wesley Case, The Baltimore Sun | December 11, 2013
On Monday afternoon, Charlie Hughes, the lead singer-songwriter of the Baltimore indie-pop quintet Raindeer, gently fumbled through a phone interview about the year his band had. Like many musicians, art is much easier to create than to discuss for the 29-year-old Remington resident. But ask the Damascus native the ultimate ambitions of his band, which performs at the Windup Space on Saturday, and Hughes speaks with confidence. "I'd always make music no matter what, but we're definitely trying to make this a career and get out there," Hughes said.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | November 20, 2013
OK, this Midweek Madness selection is ever so slightly politically incorrect, by 2013 standards. So sue me. This skit from the classic 1960s comedy album "When You're in Love, the Whole World is Jewish" features a young Valerie Harper and some great colleagues. So enjoy it, already. And have a nice hot glass of tea.
ENTERTAINMENT
Lori Sears and The Baltimore Sun | November 15, 2013
I'll admit it from the get-go: I'm an Elton John nut. I love the man, his music, his melodies, his voice. So let me start not at the beginning, but at the end of last night's concert at the packed Verizon Center in Washington. When the show was over, I started replaying the highlights of the concert in my head. And I began thinking of the songs that he didn't play. I wasn't dwelling out of regret or disappointment, but rather out of amazement. He could have played another three-hour concert of the songs that he didn't perform.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Wesley Case, The Baltimore Sun | November 6, 2013
Ed Schrader's Music Beat, the Baltimore post-punk duo of Ed Schrader and Devlin Rice, has signed to Nashville's Infinity Cat Recordings, according to Schrader. The band signed a two-album deal last month, and the first release - titled "Party Jail" - will come out in the spring, the 34-year-old singer said over the phone on Wednesday. Infinity Cat - whose artists include Jeff the Brotherhood, Diarrhea Planet and more - first noticed the group last year when Schrader and Rice opened for another Baltimore group, Future Islands, in Boston, Schrader said.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Emma Schkloven, The Baltimore Sun | October 31, 2013
On his latest album, July's “Last of the Great Pretenders,” singer Matt Nathanson opens with the lyric, “I'd kill anyone who'd treat you as bad as I do.” With it, the 40-year-old artist announces his eighth full-length record is clearly different than the others. With songs that take place chronologically from mid-summer to New Year's Eve, “Pretenders” feels like a page from Nathanson's personal journal. Through complex lyrics, the album engages emotionally and brings to light Nathanson's grittier, deeper side.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Wesley Case, The Baltimore Sun | October 9, 2013
"Too Slow," one of the more delicate songs on Those Darlins' new album, holds special significance for Jessi Zazu. "I wrote that when I first started dating my boyfriend," the 24-year-old singer said by phone from her home in Nashville last week. "It was just a rough time period, but that was really sweet. Whenever I play it, it reminds me of the beginning of my relationship. " It's a time for new beginnings for Those Darlins, the rock quartet that released its third record, "Blur the Line," last week and headlines the Metro Gallery on Friday.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Wesley Case, The Baltimore Sun | September 24, 2013
It's a simple narrative that never seems to fail: A music genre gets hot, wears out its welcome, gets banished to un-hip purgatory for a period of time and then, inexplicably, comes back cooler than before. It's happening right now to the punk subgenre “emo” - the sexier label is the “Midwestern emo revival” - and Evan Weiss, the 28-year-old singer/songwriter from Chicago better known as Into It. Over It., has emerged as the one of movement's most vital artists. Just don't ask him if he's surprised by it all. “It's funny that people are only noticing it now because I feel like that revival has been happening for the last six years,” Weiss said.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Wesley Case, The Baltimore Sun | September 11, 2013
Seeing J. Roddy Walston and the Business in concert always guarantees one thing: You'll leave much sweatier than you arrived. Since arriving in Baltimore from Tennessee in 2004, the quartet's workmanlike reputation has been built on its raucous, give-everything-you-have-and-more live show, where perspiration simply comes with the territory. But J. Roddy Walston and the Business were different from the other Baltimore-bred bands of the time. They weren't the lauded experimentalists of Animal Collective or the cloaked-in-mystery duo of Beach House.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Dustin Levy and For The Baltimore Sun | July 10, 2013
Michael Franti has recorded music for decades, and even had a Top 20 hit with the song "Say Hey (I Love You). " But Franti hadn't collaborated with writers from outside his band until he began working on his new album, "All People," which will be released July 30. Before his show Friday at Jiffy Lube Live, Franti talked about how current events influence his writing, and his household sayings. You're touring with Train this summer. How did that come about? I'm super excited traveling with them.
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