Strong Songs

Strong Songs

Music: it's good. On each episode of Strong Songs, host Kirk Hamilton takes listeners inside a piece of music, breaking it down and figuring out what makes it work.

May 14, 2021
71
00:33:5731.09 MB

"Nessun dorma" by Giacomo Puccini (Aria Code)

The fine folks at WNYC's fabulous opera podcast Aria Code recently reached out about doing a cross-promotion with Strong Songs, and now here we are, running an episode of their show in the Strong Songs feed. If you enjoy it, you should definitely go check out the show - Aria Code is very easy to fin...

May 05, 2021
70
01:01:3656.4 MB

Strung Beats, Jazz Battles & The Notes You Don't Play

The Strong Songs mailbag has gotten pretty overstuffed lately, so Kirk decided to take another crack at it. That means it's time for more of your musical questions! On this episode, we bounce around between the best songs for performing CPR, country music multiphonics, Noname's strung beats, the sli...

April 30, 202100:58:0953.24 MB

Explaining Musicals, with Lindsay Ellis

If an emotion is too big for talking, you sing. If it's too big for singing, you dance. And if it's too big for dancing, well, you just gotta podcast! Author, podcaster, and video essayist Lindsay Ellis knows a thing or two about outsized Broadway emotions—in addition to her many other pursuits, she...

April 21, 2021
69
00:59:4754.74 MB

Sidechain Compression & Saxophone Traffic Cones

Mailbag time! Kirk peruses the Strong Songs inbox to answer your questions about jazz drum solos, practicing with play-a-longs, Tame Impala tunes, saxophones with traffic cones, vocal technique, sidechain compression, and several tricky rhythms.

April 07, 2021
68
00:59:4554.71 MB

"Stolen Moments" by Oliver Nelson

Jazz is all about the contrast between the individual and the collective, and few recordings embody that as beautifully as "Stolen Moments," the opening track from Oliver Nelson's 1961 hard-bop record The Blues and the Abstract Truth. On this episode, Kirk dives deep into Nelson's classic tune, star...

March 24, 2021
67
00:55:1850.63 MB

"Cameo Lover" by Kimbra

Open up your heart! Open up your heart! Open up your heart, let Kimbra pull you out! On this episode, Kirk goes for a swim in the extra-buoyant waters of Kimbra's 2011 pop stomper "Cameo Lover." It's an intricate musical narrative told through shifting time-feels, retro drum beats, leaping vocals, a...

March 17, 202101:07:0261.38 MB

The Mysteries of Music, with Carmen Staaf

What's this? A bonus episode of Strong Songs on an off week?? Indeed it is! For this episode of Strong Conversations (working title), Kirk hopped on a call with New York pianist Carmen Staaf to talk about the fundamental elements of music, learning to sing as an instrumentalist, teaching jazz and ea...

March 10, 2021
65
00:57:1452.4 MB

"Wuthering Heights" by Kate Bush

Heathcliff! It's us, it's Strong Songs, we've come home! The time has come for a deep dive into the music of the great Kate Bush, and what better song to analyze than her breakthrough 1978 hit, "Wuthering Heights." This song has it all - odd phrasing, shifting key centers, soaring vocals, ...

February 24, 2021
64
00:58:0553.17 MB

Cross-Rhythms, Concept Albums & Dream Songs

Time for the first Q&A episode of Strong Songs year three! On this episode, Kirk digs into the mailbag for your questions on Jack White's guitar tone, Shabaka Hutchings' sax sound, 70s kitsch jazz, concept albums, drummers learning mallet instruments, Celtic sounds, "saving" jazz, and ...

February 10, 2021
63
00:59:3354.51 MB

"Babylon Sisters" by Steely Dan

Here comes that Santa Ana wind again, blowing us right into the slightly skewed world of Steely Dan. It was never a question whether Strong Songs would do a Steely Dan episode, it was more a question of which song to focus on. In the end, Kirk chose "Babylon Sisters," a culmination of the ...