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Art&Seek

For a little over a year, musicians – from national stars to local talent – have been going room to room, playing tunes for patients at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas.

It’s part of a national effort to channel the healing power of song.

From Texas Standard:

Steve Earle. Beyonce. Buddy Holly. Geto Boys. Ornette Coleman. Ernest Tubb. Bun B. Selena. Van Cliburn. Johnny Mathis. Stevie Ray Vaughan. Did I mention Willie? If ever there were a no-brainer for Texas tourism, surely a museum of Texas music history would fit that description.

Sam Lao is this week's Artist Spotlight.
Sam Lao

Welcome to the Art&Seek Artist Spotlight. Every Thursday, here and on KERA FM, we’ll explore the personal journey of a different North Texas creative. As it grows, this site, artandseek.org/spotlight, will eventually paint a collective portrait of our artistic community. Check out all the artists we’ve profiled.

Nurturing A Love Of Music At Dallas Winds Band Camp

Jun 15, 2016
Dallas Winds Band Camp

With school in the rearview, kids in North Texas are turning their brains off and enjoying their summer. But, last week, some students in the Dallas Independent School District returned to the classroom in hopes of becoming more proficient at one of their passions – music. We decided to visit Dallas Winds Band Camp to see what the kids were learning and to find out what they think about their future with music. 

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

This weekend in Cleveland, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will induct a North Texas legend. Stevie Ray Vaughan and his band Double Trouble – Chris Layton, Tommy Shannon, and Reese Wynans – are headed for the Rock Hall 25 years after Vaughan died in a helicopter crash.

Stella M. Chávez / KERA News

Kaitlynn Curtner suffered massive bleeding in her brain when she was 12. Doctors say it was caused by an arteriovenous malformation, or AVM. The Tarrant County girl survived, but the condition affected her short-term memory.

Abbott Won't Keep Longtime Texas Music Office Director

Jan 8, 2015
Texas Tribune

Since the Texas Music Office was established in 1990, the division housed in the Texas governor's office has been run by Casey Monahan, a former music writer. After a quarter century, that's about to change.

Joel Bernstein / 'Songs From A Prarie Girl'

Not since Wham!’s 1984 single “Last Christmas” has a holiday song been accepted widely into the canon. The good ones made later usually follow the lead of the classics in at least one way: they pine for another time or place. Music historian Ted Gioia, author of The Jazz Standards: A Guide to the Repertoire and the forthcoming Love Songs: A Hidden History, explains why the past - or our idea of it - is a comfort each season.

Dane Walters / KERA News

Sarah Jaffe got her start strumming and singing in the clubs of Denton and Deep Ellum.  Her third album, Don't Disconnect, was released Tuesday and fans from the old days may not recognize her. The 28-year-old has embraced a new, lush electronic dance sound.  

Krystina Martinez / KERA News

There’s no denying that Texas is the land of football. With the first scrimmage a week away, there’s another group of athletes training hard -- the marching band.

Mariachi music has a long history, dating back to 18th century Mexico. How do you get the younger generation interested in this old tradition of guitar strumming, violin playing and passionate singing? We checked out a mariachi summer camp for middle and high school kids at the University of North Texas at Denton.

Abbey Drucker

Benjamin Curtis, who died Sunday at age 35 after a battle with lymphoblastic lymphoma, was the  drummer in Dallas bands UFOFU and Tripping Daisy. But he came out from behind the kit to give so much more. Curtis showed what he could do as a guitarist for Secret Machines, fronted by his brother Brandon. The release of their debut album Now Here Is Nowhere electrified the indie rock landscape in 2004 with a big, brave sound. The expansive guitar on that record was just the beginning of his wider contributions to music.

www.nyri.info

None ranked among Billboard magazine’s top 10 artists for 2013, but commentator David Okamoto says the year was unique for Texas musicians, established and new.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Sal Favia has been collecting film recordings and books for more than 50 years.

Someday, he hopes to house his movie music collection in a local museum of his own making. The obsession may be realistic, maybe not.

Hai-Ting Chinn sings some seriously nerdy, and beautiful, classical music. The mezzo-soprano, who in addition to singing in operas, likes to write tunes with scientific lyrics and has a podcast she co-hosts called Scopes Monkey Choir. Check out her music, courtesy of Phil Plait, the creator of Slate's Bad Astronomy.

Willow Blythe / KERA News

A lot of non-profits preach music education for kids, but a local jazz legend is keeping his simple.

Every year, Freddie Jones hands out about a dozen trumpets to young people with a little talent and a lot of drive. But once the instrument changes hands, the work’s just starting.

Courtesy of Herring Family

Emylee Herring, of Denton, is one of 12 young people whose songs are being aired on Kiss FM (106.1) from now until May 4th. She’s competing in a music competition highlighting young artists in North Texas. Emylee is also in the final stages of recovery from a major surgery for scoliosis.

Ruckus Raisers: Texas Music Top 10 Of 2012

Dec 31, 2012
themusicslut.com

David Okamoto takes his  annual year-end look at the best music stemming from Texas, and once again, it's a mixed bag.

NPR Music's strangely, spectacularly intimate concert series gets a visit from the Texas troubadour. Where else are you going to see Lyle Lovett pick up a cup of coffee midset and launch into a monologue about Iris Dement? And then deliver a haunting guitar-and-fiddle version of "If You Were To Wake Up?"

With the annual South By Southwest Festival, Austin’s seen by many as the state’s musical focal point. Commentator David Okamoto remembers when that attention focused farther north. 

As usual, we close out the year with David Okamoto and his top ten choices for the best of music from Texas artists.  This wasn't the year for veteran performers.