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Object Of Sound

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Object Of Sound brings you in tune with the music shaping our culture today. Hosted by poet and critic Hanif Abdurraqib, each episode blends the eclectic curation of freeform radio with artist interviews and textural storytelling, guiding you to a new way of listening.
20 Episodes
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Welcome to season two of Object of Sound! As the world opens back up, we’re entering a moment of collective renewal and return, so it feels right to speak with an artist who is versed in reinvention: Mykki Blanco. Hanif sits down with Mykki to talk about the release of their new album ‘Broken Hearts and Beauty Sleep’ coming out today, and the two enter into a layered conversation about what it means for an artist to be labeled as ‘ahead of their time.’ Visit https://bit.ly/oos-mykki to check out the playlist of songs curated for this episode./Show Notes/Mykki Blanco’s newest album is Broken Hearts and Beauty Sleep. Mykki brings up their previous projects, Betty Rubble: The Initiation and Gay Dog Food as examples of their evolution as an artist.Mykki Blanco cites Big Freedia, Madonna, Prince and David Bowie as legends who inspire them. /Music in This Week's Playlist/Love Me, Mykki BlancoCruel Cruel World, Jackie ShaneRent, Big FreediaKoi, Le1fQueen Of This Shit, Quay DashCoytada, Linn de QuebradaDon’t Despair, Beverly Glenn-CopelandAdore, Dreamcrusher/Credits/ This show is produced by work by work: Scott Newman, Jemma Rose Brown, Babette Thomas, Mayari Sherina Ong and by Hanif Abdurraqib. The show is mixed by Sam Bair.  
For the season finale of Object of Sound, a reminder that you are an artist, regardless of what you do for work. Before Brittany Howard became a striking soloist and lead singer of Alabama Shakes, she worked at Cracker Barrel, sold cars, and even delivered mail in rural Alabama. In this episode, Hanif and Brittany reflect on how they preserved their creative lives and taught themselves writing and music while on the job. They dive into a shared love of funk and Brittany reveals how she learned to play guitar as a kid from reading magazines. Plus, a playlist of songs to soundtrack your work day. After this episode, we’re going to take a break. Season Two of Object of Sound picks up June 18th! Stay tuned. For the playlist of songs curated for this episode, visit http://bit.ly/oos-work/Show Notes/Brittany Howard’s most recent album is Jaime. Hanif and Brittany talk about Bill Withers and Brittany’s cover of Parliament Funkadelic’s “You and Your Folks.”Brittany cites Vulfpeck and BadBadNotGood as the bands with funk rhythm sections that she admires. Brittany adds “Ain’t It Hard” by Sharon Jones,“Cold Sweat” by James Brown, “Oh Marie”by Louis Prima and “The Prophet’s Song” by Queen to a playlist of songs for the work day./Music In This Week's Playlist/You and Your Folks, Me and My Folks, Brittany Howard covering FunkadelicThe Prophet’s Song, QueenPressure, ParamoreAin’t it Hard, Sharon Jones & The Dap KingsTears of Rage, The BandPeople Everyday, Arrested DevelopmentTime’s a Wastin, Erykah Badu 
 What does it mean to be a curator of songs? The one friend who recommends new records, specifically with your tastes in mind. Hanif speaks with Hrishikesh Hirway, the creator and host of Song Exploder and a fellow music enthusiast. In this episode, Hanif and Hrishikesh discuss the communal and emotive nature of music sharing. They reflect on the experience of often being the only person of color at punk shows and what it means to, now, be in a position to evaluate music, while moving beyond the role of “tastemaker.” Plus, they collaborate on a playlist of musical underdogs who give you the most bang for your buck. For the playlist of songs curated for this episode, visit http://bit.ly/oos-hrishikesh/ Show Notes /Hrishikesh Hirway is the creator and host of the Song Exploder, a music podcast from Radiotopia and  Netflix show. His podcast credits also include Partners, West Wing Weekly and Home Cooking. Hanif and Hrishikesh reference Moneyball, in their playlist creation. And Hanif brings up the punk band Racetraitor./ Music In This Week's Playlist /I’d Like to Walk Around in Your Mind, Vashti BunyanSour Times, PortisheadMachine Gun, SlowdiveFor Want Of, Rites of SpringToo Much Information, The PoliceThe Sun, Alice ColtraneSound and the Fury, FannySuper Duper Love Parts 1&2, Sugar Billy
What makes a home? Is it where you create? Where you feel seen? And for a musician like Rhiannon Giddens, how does the idea of home shape the sound of her music? This week, Hanif sits down with North-Carolinian multi-instrumentalist Rhiannon Giddens from her new homebase in Dublin. They talk about how Ireland has seeped into her music, muse on the banjo as a weapon and a tool of archiving Black histories, and how Rhiannon is able to masterfully draw influences -- wherever she finds herself. For the playlist of songs curated for this episode, go to www.mixcloud.com/sonos./Show Notes/ Rhiannon Giddens’ recent release is They’re Calling Me Home. Hanif references his book, Little Devil In America: Notes in Praise of Black Performance  and brings up the performer, Bert Williams. Rhiannon talks about learning to play the akonting in Gambia and her first solo album Tomorrow is My Turn. This interview was originally recorded at On Air Fest. /Music In This Week's Playlist/ Waterbound, Rhiannon Giddens and Francesco TurrisiCarry Me Ohio, Sun Kil MoonDishes, PulpBaby Can I Hold You, Tracy ChapmanA Piece of Ground, Miriam MakebaMidwest, Midsummer, Used KidsMy City Was Gone, PretendersDomestica, Björk/ Credits / Object of Sound is a Sonos show produced by work x work: Scott Newman, Jemma Rose Brown, and Babette Thomas. The show is additionally produced by Hanif Abdurraqib. Our engineers are Sam Bair and Josh Hahn of The Relic Room.
When you think of protest music, you might think of the rock anthems of the 1960’s, or rap that turns frustration into elegantly poignant lyrics. For pianist Vijay Iyer, music without lyrics—has always been political music. This week, we talk with Vijay about the release of his new album 'Uneasy,' which in many ways is a protest album. We delve into the political history of jazz, the role of music in protest movements today. For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-vijay/ Show Notes /Vijay Iyer’s new album is Uneasy, with collaborators Tyshawn Sorey and Linda May Han Oh. Vijay shared Billie Holiday’s Strange Fruit and John Coltrane’s 1968 performance at The Newport Jazz festival as examples of performances of protest.Vijay cites Miles Davis’ performance of “Ah-Leu Cha” at the Newport Jazz Festival and Jimi Hendrix’s “Machine Gun” as examples of powerful political music. Vijay references Cruel Optimism by Lauren Berlant. In his final thought, Hanif discusses Nina Simone’s songs “Pirate Jenny” and “Black Is The Color Of My True Love’s Hair.” / Music In This Week's Playlist /Children of Flint, Vijay Iyer, Linda May Han Oh, Tyshawn SoreySong of the United Front, Charlie HadenVolunteered Slavery, Rahsaan Roland KirkPirate Jenny, Nina SimoneTranscendence, Alice Coltrane and Pharoh SandersAh-Leu-Cha, Miles at Newport
When Julien Baker and Hanif first met, they felt pulled by the orbit of each other’s work—work that is emotionally layered and complex. This week on the show, Hanif and Julien catch up. Of course, they talk about Julien’s recent album release, Little Oblivions —which Hanif wrote the liner notes for— but they also get into ideas of self-redemption, digesting emotions through music, and missing the miraculous feeling of live music. Plus, Hanif and Julien collaborate on a playlist of their personal praise songs; the music they would play in their own respective churches. For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-julien/ Show Notes / Julien Baker’s new album is Little Oblivions. The songs that Julien Baker would play at her church are “The River” by Manchester Orchestra, “The Joke” by Brandi Carlile, and “Love Theory” by Kirk Franklin./ Music In This Week's Playlist / Bloodshot , Julien BakerThe Joke, Brandi CarlileWhen I Was Young, Tina TurnerBlown a Wish, My Bloody ValentineHow I Got Over, Aretha FranklinLived In Bars, Cat Power The River, Manchester Orchestra The Ocean Grew Hands to Hold Me, The Wonder Years
This week marks the release of Hanif’s new book, A Little Devil in America: Notes in Praise of Black Performance, and the opening chapter dives into the colorful world of Soul Train. Bell bottoms, the Soul Train line, afro’s as high as the sky. Hanif and journalist Ericka Blount Danois talk through how the show forever changed fashion, dance, and carved out a path for the all-Black media empires we see today. For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-soultrain/ Show Notes / Hanif’s new book is A Little Devil in America: Notes In Praise of Black Performance. Erica’s book on Soul Train is Love, Peace and Soul: Behind the Scenes of America's Favorite Dance Show Soul Train: Classic Moments./ Music In This Week's Playlist / Some Kind of Lover - Dance Remix , Jody Watley Let It Whip, Dazz BandHe’s The Greatest Dancer, Sister SledgeLove Come Down, Evelyn Champagne KingFamily Affair, Sly & The Family StoneSeptember, Earth, Wind & Fire Do Wa Ditty (Blow That Thing), ZappLove Train, The O’Jays
 For Hanif, music that some folks would consider ‘dark’ like emo, doom metal, and goth, have helped him find illumination. In this episode, Hanif talks to a master of darkly humorous lyrics, Sydney Sprague, about her debut album, ‘maybe I will see you at the end of the world’ and what it takes to make music at a time when survival feels like a question mark. Plus, Hanif and Sydney make a playlist of songs that’d be the perfect soundtrack to the apocalypse.  For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-apocalypse/ Show Notes / Sydney Sprague’s debut album is maybe I will see you at the end of the world. Hanif references Sydney’s music videos for “I refuse to die” and “object permanence.”The book Hanif wrote while living in Provincetown was They Can’t Kill Us Until They Kill Us./ Music In This Week's Playlist / Object Permanence, Sydney Sprague (feat. Danielle Durrack)  Bird is Bored of Flying, MastersystemWe No Who U R, Nick Cave & The Bad SeedsGimme Shelter, Merry ClaytonSome Velvet Morning, Slowdive Meet You In The Light, With Our Arms To The Sun What’s Mine Is Yours, Sleater-Kinney Hell on Earth (Front Lines), Mobb Deep
This week on the show, we're taking a critical look at The GRAMMYs. We bring on NPR’s Sidney Madden and Rodney Carmichael to talk through the systemic inequities of an event that each year decides which musician can be called the “best.” Why do we still care about awards that trail seemingly years behind the culture? Plus, Hanif, Sidney and Rodney share which artists they think should be recognized, whether or not they take home an award this weekend. For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-grammys/ Show Notes / Sidney and Rodney are the co-hosts of NPR’s Louder Than A Riot. Sidney says Beyoncé’s 2017 Grammy performance, good kid m.A.A.d. city, Lemonade and My Dark Twisted Fantasy have changed the trajectory of music. Rodney cites Kendrick Lamar’s 2016 GRAMMYs performance, a 2008 Sly Stone Tribute and Little Richard’s speech at the 1988 GRAMMYs as iconic moments in awards show history.Sidney is excited for Kaytranda and Jhené Aiko. Rodney is pulling for Lil Baby and The Box by Roddie Rich./ Music in This Week's Playlist / Shoegaze, Alabama ShakesSky Full Of Song, Florence + The Machine Leave the Door Open, Silk Sonic (Anderson .Paak & Bruno Mars)Blue Lights, Jorja Smith River, Margo Price Shady Grove, YolaSwimming Pools (Drank), Kendrick Lamar Right Back, Khalid 
For the first month of the pandemic, Hanif couldn’t listen to music. Then KeiyaA dropped her album Forever Ya Girl! and the idea that new music could be made, in this moment, shook him. This week on Object of Sound, we're thinking back on the exhausting, scary, revelatory year we’ve just lived through, and how the pandemic has changed the need for music in our lives. We talk to KeiyaA about crystals, writing scene-rich lyrics and the music that carried her through these last 12 months. For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-keiyaa/ Show Notes / KeiyaA’s most recent album is Forever Ya Girl. Her zine is titled, On Returning My Quikest Language Back To My Mouth.Hanif’s book A Little Devil In America: Notes in Praise Of Black Performance, is set to release March 30th. KeiyaA mentions Slauson Malone’s catalog for his exhibition ‘A star like any other’— at Midway Contemporary Art.KeiyaA’s selects for music made in the last 12 months include “Use It” by Demae, “White Double Consciousness” by Nelson Bandela, and “Clock In-Out” by Cleo Reed.KeiyaA mentions shows thrown by her friends AmaniFela and Maassai. Hanif gives a shout out to Brown Recluse Zine Distro. / Music In This Week's Playlist / I Want My Things, KeiyaA I Refuse To Die, Sydney Sprague Queendom, Girlhood Other Side, Shamir I Finally Understand, Charli XCXBody, Megan Thee StallionWhite Double Consciousness, Nelson BandelaWeird Fishes, Lianne La Havas
Matt Berninger started out as the frontman of The National, but recently he’s taken off on his own artistic path. With the re-issue of the National’s early albums out today, we speak with Matt about revisiting past selves, his collaboration with Booker T. Jones, and take a broader look at artists who have reinvented their sound after going solo. For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-solo/ Show Notes / Matt Berninger says Willie Nelson’s Stardust was a large inspiration for his most recent album, Serpentine Prison. Matt cites “Sunny” by Booker T and the MG’s as an example of a record where you can “hear musicians look at each other.” Matt calls Roberta Flack’s “Killing Me Softly With His Song” and Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You” as, what he calls, “direct, on your knees, love songs”. Matt says “Collar Of Your Shirt,” is the song on his album where he feels he really hit the mark. Matt says “Even Here We Are” by Paul Westerberg and “When She Walks In The Room” by Bryan Ferry as his favorite song by front people who went solo. / Music In This Week's Playlist / Collar of Your Shirt, Matt BerningerAdam Lives in Theory, Ms. Lauryn HillEven Here We Are, Paul WesterbergMall Music, Nice As FuckLove, Selfish Love, Patrick StumpLazaretto, Jack WhiteComes the Night, Karen OJòga, Björk/ Credits / Object of Sound is a Sonos show produced by work x work: Scott Newman, Jemma Rose Brown, and Babette Thomas. The show is additionally produced by Hanif Abdurraqib. Our engineers are Sam Bair and Josh Hahn of The Relic Room.
When Grammy nominated bassist Meshell Ndegeocello read James Baldwin for the first time, her world shifted on its axis. Like many before her, Baldwin’s words reverberated into her creative process. In this episode, we speak with Ndegeocello about the literary ancestors who inform her music, the arc of her decades-long career, and Hanif shares a playlist of songs inspired by poetry and literature.  For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-meshell/ Show Notes / Meshell Ndegeocello’s most recent project is Chapter and Verse, The Gospel of James Baldwin. Meshell cites The Fire Next Time and Another Country as the texts that introduced her to Baldwin. Meshell says the writers whose work she'd most love to put to music are Kiese Laymon, Joan Didion's The White Album and Sheila Heti./ Music In This Week's Playlist / Mary Magdalene, Meshell NdegeocelloThe Sensual World, Kate BushPopular, Nada SurfWhen I Can See The Valley, Leyla MCcalla Samson, Regina SpektorThe Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner, Iron MaidenGuantanamera, Celia Cruz Baldwin,  Jamila Woods/ Credits / Object of Sound is a Sonos show produced by work x work: Scott Newman, Jemma Rose Brown, and Babette Thomas. The show is additionally produced by Hanif Abdurraqib. Our engineers are Sam Bair and Josh Hahn of The Relic Room.
 Sylvan Esso’s Nick Sanborn and Amelia Meath are tired of your typical love song. They’re more interested in the music that flows from an argument, singing about heartbreak, and falling back in love with yourself. As Valentine’s day approaches, we talk to the duo about what it takes to make art together as romantic partners, crack open what a love song can be, and Hanif reads a poem by Nicole Sealey. For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-love/ Show Notes / Hanif references “God Only Knows” by The Beach Boys. Amelia references the song “Free” from Sylvan Esso’s recent release, Free Love.Amelia references “Juke Box Hero” by Foreigner as her first favorite love song. Nick references “They Might Be Giants” by Ana Ng as his first favorite love song. Amelia and Nick reference Robyn’s “Dancing On My Own” and Adele’s “Send My Love” as redemptive self-love songs./ Music In This Week's Playlist / Sylvan Esso, Rooftop DancingRoxy Music, In Every Dream Home A HeartacheWhitney Houston & Cece Winans, Count On MeGhostface Killah, The Sun (feat. Slick Rick, Raekwon & Rza) Bill Withers, Lean on MeRobyn, Dancing On My OwnNina Simone, Feeling GoodLCD Soundsystem, All My FriendsThe National, Bloodbuzz Ohio/ Credits / Object of Sound is a Sonos show produced by work x work: Scott Newman, Jemma Rose Brown, and Babette Thomas. The show is additionally produced by Hanif Abdurraqib. Our engineers are Sam Bair and Josh Hahn of The Relic Room. 
It’s Super Bowl weekend, and we’ve invited critic Wesley Morris on to talk about Whitney Houston’s jaw-dropping rendition of the Star Spangled banner. On the 30th anniversary of her performance, we explore the beauty and complexity the national anthem holds for Black Americans and ask: how should we be listening to the National Anthem today? For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-wesley/ Show Notes / Wesley and Hanif reference Whitney Houston, Marvin Gaye, and Jimi Hendrix’s versions of the National Anthem.Wesley and Hanif cite Lady Gaga and Beyonce’s inauguration performances of the National Anthem.Wesley Morris is the host of the podcast Still Processing, with former Object of Sound guest, Jenna Wortham. Jahja Ling is the conductor laureate of the San Diego symphony. John Clayton a jazz musician and composer, set to perform on a Jazz Cruise, in 2022. / Music In This Week's Playlist /Whitney Houston, I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me) Sophie, It’s Okay to CryCraig David, 7 DaysFireworks, Oh, Why Can't We Start Old & Get YoungerShame, March DayCHIKA, CrownJay-Z, Public Service AnnouncementPeople Under the Stairs, Mid-City Fiestamxmtoon, All Star (by Smash Mouth)/ Credits / Object of Sound is a Sonos show produced by work x work: Scott Newman, Jemma Rose Brown, and Babette Thomas. The show is additionally produced by Hanif Abdurraqib. Our engineers are Sam Bair and Josh Hahn of The Relic Room.
The strength of Black women as storytellers stands out on arguably the most celebrated album of this year, Heaux Tales, from Jazmine Sullivan. Through stories told by Jazmine’s close circle of women, the album explores themes of love, sex and Black womanhood. In this episode, we talk with Jazmine about her writing process, taking breaks from music and her upcoming performance at the Super Bowl. / Show Notes / For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-jazmines-tale. Hanif says that Jazmine’s album reminds him of the Waiting To Exhale soundtrack. Jazmine cites Cardi B and Lizzo has some of her inspirations.Jazmine says Whitney Houston’s Super Bowl rendition of the Star Spangled Banner is her favorite take on the song. Jazmine Sullivan’s album is Heaux Tales. / Credits / Object of Sound is a Sonos show produced by work x work: Scott Newman, Jemma Rose Brown, and Babette Thomas. The show is additionally produced by Hanif Abdurraqib. Our engineers are Sam Bair and Josh Hahn of The Relic Room.
From the late MF Doom to Grace Jones and Orville Peck, we take a look at musicians who have worn masks to protect their identities at a time when we’re all masking up to protect one another. In this episode, we talk with writers Sasha Geffen and Harmony Holiday about the different ways artists choose to mask up, and how covering one part of who we are can also uncover creative freedom. / Show Notes /For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-masksRead Harmony Holiday’s elegy to MF Doom for FriezeSasha’s book which Hanif ‘pushes’ on everyone is Glitter Up the Dark How Pop Music Broke the BinaryWatch the 'Slime' video by Shygirl and Mequetrefe by Arca to see how these two artists play with ‘real’ and ‘fake’ imagesHanif referenced when SIA performed ‘Wolves’ with Kanye West on SNL./ Credits / Object of Sound is a Sonos show produced by work x work: Scott Newman, Jemma Rose Brown, and Babette Thomas. The show is additionally produced by Hanif Abdurraqib. Our engineers are Sam Bair and Josh Hahn of The Relic Room.
When one song sits next to another, a new story is told. We talk with Moses Sumney about composing the arc of his album græ, making playlists, and how he honors his own work by refusing to define it. Welcome to Object Of Sound./ Show Notes /For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit here.Moses referenced the album Speaker Box and The Love Below by Outkast. Hanif and Moses recommend cleaning your house to Future Nostalgia by Dua Lipa. Moses says the albums Forever, Ya Girl by KeiyaA and Hannah by Lomelda are the music that'll be his archive of this moment in time. Moses' two-part album is græ./ Credits / Object of Sound is a Sonos show produced by work x work: Scott Newman, Jemma Rose Brown, and Babette Thomas. The show is additionally produced by Hanif Abdurraqib. Our engineers are Sam Bair and Josh Hahn of The Relic Room.
2020 was arguably the year of the cover song. Listening to a familiar song spun a new way can be grounding or groundbreaking. We talk to the often covered and prolific performer of covers, Jeff Tweedy, about what goes into a great cover, and what it’s like to hear his own songs re-translated by other musicians. / Show Notes /For the playlist of cover songs curated for this episode visit http://bit.ly/oos-covers,Jeff Tweedy’s book is How to Write One Song, Watch episodes of The Tweedy Show created by the Tweedy family during lockdown, Jeff Tweedy’s cover of Billie Eilish’s song, ‘I Love You’, Fans create a 70 song cover tribute album to Jeff Tweedy on Bandcamp, The song Head Rolls Off is by Frightened Rabbit , Listen to Tiny Changes: A Celebration of Frightened Rabbit's 'The Midnight Organ Fight'/ Credits / Object of Sound is a Sonos show produced by work x work: Scott Newman, Jemma Brown, Babette Thomas. The show is additionally produced by Hanif Abdurraqib. Our engineers are Sam Bair and Josh Hahn of The Relic Room.
Following a year like no other, stepping into a future of unknowns, the time to envision liberation is now. In this episode, we speak with vocalist and violinist Sudan Archives who spins the ideas and sounds of afrofuturism into her work, as well as co-editors of the book Black Futures, Kimberly Drew and Jenna Wortham. We track the evolution of afrofuturism from outer space to inner space in a dynamic playlist, and discuss how music has helped us create the world we want to inhabit. / Show Notes /For the playlist of songs curated for this episode visit https://bit.ly/oos-afrofutirism.Kimberly Drew and Jenna Wortham's book Black Futures is available now from One World.Alisha B. Wormsley’s billboard, There Are Black People In The Future,Jenna referenced books by the author Ytasha Womack,The instrument Sudan played is called the goje,Jamila Woods album is  LEGACY! LEGACY!/ Credits / Object of Sound is a Sonos show produced by work x work: Scott Newman, Jemma Brown, Babette Thomas. The show is additionally produced by Hanif Abdurraqib. Our engineers are Sam Bair and Josh Hahn of The Relic Room.
Object Of Sound: Trailer

Object Of Sound: Trailer

2021-01-1202:421

Object of Sound from Sonos Sound System brings you in tune with the music shaping our culture today. Hosted by poet and critic Hanif Abdurraqib, each episode blends the eclectic curation of freeform radio with artist interviews and textural storytelling, guiding you to a new way of listening. Check out Object Of Sound in your podcast feed, every Friday, starting January 15th.
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