A half-dozen cool things in music, from two points of view:
London Grammar, the Varsity. This British trip-hop trio was an impressive force — especially lead singer Hannah Reid’s unique, mesmerizing voice. Check them out — especially if you’re an Annie Lennox/Florence Welch/Lana del Rey fan.
“The Punk Singer.” This documentary is a candid, raw look into Kathleen Hanna’s colorful musical and personal life. I love it! It brings out my own secret “riot grrl,” and that’s a great thing.
Kate Bush announces tour after 35-year hiatus. The first set of tickets for her Before the Dawn Tour in London sold out in 15 minutes. And I’m not surprised. Her music is epic and strange and gorgeous and simply otherworldly. I’d book a flight to London in a heartbeat if I could get a concert ticket.
Angela lundberg, Minneapolis
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Ruben Studdard and Lalah Hathaway, the Dakota. Singing together and separately, they brought R&B heaven to Minneapolis. He impressed with robustness and range — and a terrific Luther Vandross medley.
Liv Warfield, “Late Show With David Letterman.” Surrounded by the dancing NPG Horns, Warfield soared on “Blackbird” (great opening line: “Paul McCartney got it wrong”) — another knockout TV talk-show performance by the former Prince backup singer.
Experience Hendrix, the State. With his passionate singing and guitar fireworks, Minneapolis-launched Jonny Lang stole the all-star show of guitarists saluting Jimi Hendrix. Lang’s jam with Doyle Bramhall II on “Spanish Castle Magic” was a highlight. Loved the family-album photos of Jimi — from a baby shot to his tour with Little Richard — shown during “Gypsy Boy.”
Jon Bream, Star Tribune