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Nation Topics - Music

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Masses of people driven from their homes, murdered, maimed, raped, sent into panicked flight.

Tom Waits is an imaginary hobo. He cruises the oddball corners of American pop culture, collecting the deft and moving and loopy short takes he sees and imagines there.

Most Americans don't like instrumental music.

Does it seem to you that feminism this past year was just one long gargle over the meaning of Monica? That the biggest women's issue was whether oral sex is sex?

For the past year and a half, I've been spending most of my time between 1922 and 1979--the years of Charles Mingus's birth and death, since I'm writing his biography, due to be published next ye

On the eve of the New York premiere of his

Symphony No.

I didn't realize how much I was counting on Larry Flynt until I noticed I had spent Monday evening trying to find on the Web or TV a report of the much-anticipated news conference in which h

Blogs

Fear of nuclear apocalypse has provided serious creative juice for songwriters and musicians of all genres.

August 5, 2011

Eric reviews Paul McCartney, Raul Malo and Elvis Costello, and Reed sees the ghost of the Republican party's past.

July 21, 2011

For those concerned that there's no good protest music out there, the English hip-hop group NxtGen is using rap to take searing aim at the British government’s austerity budget.

June 29, 2011

An aging but still spry Jimmy Cliff, the legendary Jamaican reggae master, rocked the Glastonbury Festival with a searing version of one of his biggest hits re-tooled as a cry for peace in Afghanistan.

June 27, 2011

Clarence Clemons could talk, both musically and verbally. 

June 18, 2011

Gil Scott-Heron's political legacy was vast and his connections to social movements deep.

May 28, 2011

Bob Dylan turns 70 on Tuesday. To mark the occasion I've assembled a list of what I consider his top ten protest songs with accompanying videos.

May 19, 2011

Jon Stewart paid a visit to Fox News' Bill O'Reilly to debate Fox News' hip hop double standard.

May 16, 2011

Eric on Smithsonian's Jazz anthology and Reed Richardson on the S&P's rating of the bond market.

April 22, 2011

Eric Alterman reviews jazz, including Wynton Marsalis and Eric Clapton, the Jazz Foundation benefit, and Reed Richardson discusses the ethics of Obama's budget speech.

April 15, 2011