When Irish singer Lisa Hannigan came to the NPR Music offices a few weeks ago, she not only brought along with her one of the most gorgeous voices we've heard; she was also one of the warmest guests we've welcomed.
Prior to kicking off her solo career, Hannigan made her name performing alongside Damien Rice. She just released her second album, the lush and beautiful Passenger.
There comes a point at the height of a band's career where its members don't have to wake up on a Saturday morning during a tour to go play some office concert. For young acts, that sort of appearance can be about reaching new fans. But for Wilco, it's about pleasing those who've come to care passionately about the music.
Grouplove knows how to write the kind of songs that keep me awake at night, that sing in my head over and over, that have me pounding the steering wheel to the beat, and that are worth rolling down the car windows and sharing with pedestrians whether they want to hear them or not. These aren't the greatest singers or guitarists we've had play in the NPR Music offices — the early-day warmup for the three songs here seemed about the length of a full concert — that craft will strengthen as they play.
Audio Only: Fountains Of Wayne's Tiny Desk Concert
Fountains of Wayne has always been slightly miscast as a chipper band of power-pop ironists, thanks in part to the omnipresence of the 2003 novelty hit "Stacy's Mom." But even that song is infused with a melancholy churn: Sure, "Stacy's Mom" makes light of adolescent desire and delusion, but songwriters Chris Collingwood and Adam Schlesinger still find a way to relate to the raw, unrequited want that exists at the core of every undersexed teenager — and in the spirit of everyone who's