Stephen Thompson http://knba.org en Ryan Adams, Live In Concert: Newport Folk Festival 2014 http://knba.org/post/ryan-adams-live-concert-newport-folk-festival-2014 Tue, 22 Jul 2014 14:48:00 +0000 Stephen Thompson 13743 at http://knba.org First Listen: Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, 'Hypnotic Eye' http://knba.org/post/first-listen-tom-petty-heartbreakers-hypnotic-eye Even when he was in his late 20s, <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15300677/tom-petty">Tom Petty</a> had a curmudgeonly edge to him, so it's no surprise that he's sneering about threats to the American dream in the opening moments of his new album, <em>Hypnotic Eye</em>. At 63, Petty is well into his transition to full-blown misanthropy, at times splitting the difference between <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/14982343/randy-newman">Randy Newman</a> and <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15193203/bob-dylan">Bob Dylan</a>. Mon, 21 Jul 2014 03:01:00 +0000 Stephen Thompson 13683 at http://knba.org First Listen: Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, 'Hypnotic Eye' Lydia Loveless: Tiny Desk Concert http://knba.org/post/lydia-loveless-tiny-desk-concert For 23-year-old singer-guitarist <a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/search/index.php?searchinput=lydia+loveless">Lydia Loveless</a>, gritty, countrified blues-rock is a palette broad enough to include literary drama — complete with fatalistic references to the doomed French poets Paul Verlaine and Arthur Rimbaud — and a plainspoken plea for oral sex. Tue, 01 Jul 2014 18:40:00 +0000 Stephen Thompson 12984 at http://knba.org Lydia Loveless: Tiny Desk Concert The Good Listener: When Should A 'Washed-Up' Band Pack It In? http://knba.org/post/good-listener-when-should-washed-band-pack-it We get a lot of mail at NPR Music, and alongside <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Copycat-Litter-Other-David-Yow/dp/1617752703">a $23.95 book of cat cartoons</a> by The Jesus Lizard's David Yow is a slew of smart questions about how music fits into our lives — and, this week, thoughts on when and whether once-successful musicians should give up.<p><strong><em>Dan writes via email: "I read somewhere that there's a '<a href="http://www.metalsludge.tv/?p=42068">Bang Your Head Tour</a>' with Quiet Riot and a bunch of other hair-metal bands from the '80s. Fri, 27 Jun 2014 16:03:00 +0000 Stephen Thompson 12850 at http://knba.org The Good Listener: When Should A 'Washed-Up' Band Pack It In? The Good Listener: What Makes A Summer Song? http://knba.org/post/good-listener-what-makes-summer-song We get a lot of mail at NPR Music, and alongside that one CD which appears to have been pulverized by a steamroller is a slew of smart questions about how music fits into our lives — and, this week, thoughts on what transforms a mere hit single into the agreed-upon song of the summer.<p><strong><em>Kemper writes via Facebook: "When do we know what the song of summer will be? Have we already heard this year's song? If not, when do we typically start to hear it? Why do the other seasons lack their own song?"</em></strong><p>To answer your last question first, summer is a season of simplicity. Sat, 21 Jun 2014 09:20:00 +0000 Stephen Thompson 12605 at http://knba.org The Good Listener: What Makes A Summer Song?