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Welcome to Songs for Listening, a curated site for daily playlists from musicians, agents, managers, writers, scholars, and programmers.

02-26-19 | Songs for Listening | Fred Moten

02-26-19 | Songs for Listening | Fred Moten

The poet, critic & theorist Fred Moten provides the song list for Tuesday, February 26 at Songs for Listening. Fred is currently professor in Performance Studies at NYU. Fred is the author of numerous books of theory, including In the Break: The Aesthetics of the Black Radical Tradition; as well as several books of poetry including The Feel Trio, a poetry finalist for the National Book Award.

Here's Fred in an interview with Open House editor Housten Donham talking about song & music:

Donham: The most immediate element I’m impressed by in 'The Feel Trio' is sound. You utilize a lot of repetition, anaphora, and a constant movement between the syntax of everyday speech and that of lyric. There are also multiple overt references to song, to singing and to music. How do you see this book operating on the level of sound, both in form and content?

Moten: The two biggest influences for me are Amiri Baraka and Nathaniel Mackey. And part of what’s striking about those two is their intense engagement with music — particularly, with black music. And so I’m just following behind them in that respect. I’m also following behind them in the intensity with which they think about these questions in their poetics ... In both Mackey’s work and Baraka’s work, they’re always trying to get to something that you can hear in an emphatic way, like in James Brown, or in Betty Carter, or in Coltrane. And obviously it’s not just them. I feel like that same pathway was very originally & beautifully blazed before them by Margaret Walker, Gwendolyn Brooks, and Zora Neale Hurston. There’s a specific set of protocols within the general frame of black poetry, black writing & black music that I’m operating within.

'Save Your Love for Me' by Bobby 'Blue' Bland from 'The Anthology'
'Back to the Living Again' by Curtis Mayfield from 'New World Order'
Sonata No. 13 in E-Flat Major, Op. 27 No. 1 'Sonata quasi una fantasia': II. Allegro molto e vivace by JS Bach, performed by Glenn Gould
'Ah Ndiya' by Oumou Sangare from 'Oumou Sangare'
'Kissie Lee' by Margaret Walker from 'Margaret Walker Reads Poems by Langston Hughes & Margaret Walker'

02-27-19 | Songs for Listening | William Tyler

02-27-19 | Songs for Listening | William Tyler

02-25-19 | Songs for Listening | Chris Wangro

02-25-19 | Songs for Listening | Chris Wangro