An equal opportunity
#195 | For all to sing, dance and clap their hands
You know how I’m not always sure what to write about here, right? I told you about it here. But for this JOT, I don’t have a lot of options. Our most faithful reader, a little Thing, sent me an email in ALL CAPS, so honestly, I’m a bit scared of what will happen to me if I don’t write this one.
One of the biggest music festivals in the country happens in my city every year. And I’m not ashamed to admit that I’ve never been. Call me boring, but I’m more than happy to avoid the louder-than-they-need-to-be loudspeakers, massive crowds, and unnecessary stimuli. Buuuut I do enjoy music. And if these concerts I’m going to tell you about happened in my city, I would try to make it to as many as possible.
NPR has featured all the most popular artists out there including Taylor Swift, Coldplay, Adele and Harry Styles. So I didn’t really think this was obscure. But I’ve never been so happy to find out that I was wrong. If you’re one of those people who hasn’t heard of this yet, you have no idea how honoured and excited I am to be the one who introduces you to NPR’s Tiny Desk Concerts.
The name tells you exactly what to expect. A tiny desk. A musician making music. A relatively small audience. And a casual set-up, up close and personal with the artist, that makes all the difference. Tiny Desk Concerts are how I’ve found some of the most interesting artists. And how I’ve come to appreciate some artists I didn’t care much for pre-Tiny Desk Concert.
My absolute favourite concert is this one by Superorganism: inflatable whales, music made from not-instruments, and some really fun lyrics.
Then there’s this one-by-one half of Coldplay: a choir to accompany, the most sunshine-y vibe (don’t let their black outfits fool you), and an unexpected but most welcome cover of Prince’s 1999.
Finally, I’ve never really been a fan of rap, but this one by Chika changed my mind. Just a little bit. I’m still not going to listen to any other rappers.
My fingers are itching to link some more cool ones here, but I’ll stop. Go look yourself, and make sure you read the description of each video; you can tell how thoughtfully these intimate concerts have been curated, and how invested the curators are in the music they have the privilege of sharing with you.
I’m not such a fan of the home concerts they put out during the pandemic, but if you find a particularly good one, write back and tell me about it? I will be eternally grateful.