Attention music makers in the North Bay and beyond. NPR’s popular music performance series, Tiny Desk Concerts, is once again looking for the next best band to feature live in the intimate office space. And, once again Lagunitas is fueling the fun.
Hosted by Bob Boilen from NPR’s “All Songs Considered,” the Tiny Desk Concerts feature all kinds of musicians playing folk, rock, pop, soul, hip-hop, and more from the confines of Bob’s desk. Every year, Boilen sets his eyes on discovering new, untapped talents by offering the Tiny Desk contest to any unsigned musicians. Simply record a video of yourself playing an original song, preferably at a desk, then upload it to YouTube and fill out the form by the Feb 2 deadline.
A longtime partner of Tiny Desk, Lagunitas Brewing Company is once again involved in the fun. You can view their favorite entries from years past by clicking here. If you’re interested in submitting a video for consideration, get all the contest details by clicking here. Below, check out Sonoma native and popular North Bay performer Marty O’Reilly & the Old Soul Orchestra’s entry from last year.
I don’t have too much to add to this piece by Jody Rosen, for Slate, about NPR’s taste in black music, but I recommend reading it. Rosen looks at their very white “Best Music of 2009 (So Far)” list and advances a theory that NPR’s producers look for four basic factors in deciding to spotlight a black musician—they’ve gotta be either Dead, Old, Retro or Foreign. He calls it the “DORF Matrix.”
Cute, yes, and true. NPR’s best-of list, voted by listeners, includes only two black artists out of 30 on the “best albums” list (Mos Def and, uh, Danger Mouse) and none at all on the “best songs” list. NPR isn’t the only media outlet to shaft current hip-hop and R&B for crusty soul revivalists with a by-the-books story of redemption, and though every media outlet is entitled to their own opinion, and death, age, history and foreign countries all make good, easy-lazy stories, it would seem that NPR should have an interest in battling their own caricature. Right?