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

03-13-19 | Songs for Listening | Nathaniel Mackey

03-13-19 | Songs for Listening | Nathaniel Mackey

Poet, novelist, critic, and editor Nathaniel Mackey picked tunes for Wednesday, March 13 at Songs for Listening. Nate was born in Miami, Florida, in 1947. He's the author of numerous books of fiction of “exquisite rhythmic lyricism” (Bookforum), poetry, and criticism. He's received many awards for his work, including the National Book Award in poetry for Splay Anthem, the Bollingen Prize, and the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize. Nate is the Reynolds Price Professor of English at Duke.

In addition to his work writing and editing, Nate worked as radio disc jockey beginning as an undergraduate at Princeton's WPRB and including nearly 30 years at Santa Cruz’s KUSP. For him the experience working on radio is inextricably linked to his writing: "I’ve long felt similarities between the processes of selection, sequencing, juxtaposition, pacing, transition, etc. that putting a radio program together entails and those involved in writing prose, writing poetry, and editing my journal, Hambone.” Further, Nate has described, from the beginning of his writing, "a pattern in which music would repeatedly impact, appear in, and be referred to in my writing, whether poetry or prose."

As a bonus: Click through for a brief note from Nate, along with a detailed discography and a mix for the novel Bass Cathedral. I’ve embedded an audio player and listed selection for the Bass Cathedral mix further down the page.

'Feed the Fire' performed by Betty Carter from 'Feed the Fire'
'Wouya Larana' by Bako Dagnon from 'Sidiba'
'Aparicio i Desapricions' by Agustí Fernández from 'El Laberint de la Memoria'
'Win Saadi' by Abdel Hadi Halo & El Gusto Orchestra of Algiers from 'Abdel Hadi Halo & El Gusto Orchestra of Algiers'
'Medley: Mode D-Trio & Group Dancers / Mode E Single solos & Group Dance / Mode F-Group & Solo Dance' by Charles Mingus from 'The Black Saint & The Sinner Lady'


Nate Mackey’s Bass Cathedral Mix

‘Boro’ Regional Orchestra of Mopti | ‘Mopti’ Old and New Dreams | ‘Pensativa’ Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers | ‘The Hunter Gets Captured by the Game’ | ‘Concrete Jungle’ Bob Marley & the Wailers | ‘Agüeybana Zemi’ Jerry Gonzalez | ‘Europa (Earth’s Cry Heaven’s Smile)’ Santana | ‘Never Give You Up’ Jerry Butler | ‘The Loved Ones’ Prince Lasha & Sonny Simmons | ‘Dearly Beloved’ John Coltrane | ‘Single Man Blues’ Bukka White | ‘Ellahi Yelt’ha Bhemmou’ Hsissen | ‘Blues for the Orient’ Yusef Lateef | ‘Nirvana’ Jack Wilson | ‘Just a Closer Walk with Thee’ Reverend Robert Wilkins | ‘Love Don’t Love Nobody’ The Spinners | ‘O Barquinho’ João Gilberto | ‘The Girl from Ipanema’ Archie Shepp

03-14-19 | Songs for Listening | Laura Ballance

03-14-19 | Songs for Listening | Laura Ballance

03-12-19 | Songs for Listening | Joe Henry

03-12-19 | Songs for Listening | Joe Henry