Erik Brandt and the Urban Hillbilly Quartet at Radio Heartland

Erik Brandt and the Urban Hillbilly Quartet perform in the Radio Heartland studio


By day, Erik Brandt teaches high school English. But when he's not in front of the class, he's often performing music -- either as a solo act, or with his band, The Urban Hillbilly Quartet. Back with their first recording of original music in a decade, Erik Brandt and the Urban Hillbilly Quartet stopped in to our studio to play some of the new tunes.

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How to celebrate Prince this weekend in the Twin Cities


This weekend marks two years since we lost Prince — and Minnesota is coming together to celebrate his life and the legacy that he left behind. Here is a list of some of the Prince-related events happening this weekend. While you’re cruising around town, listen to our new stream Purple Current, which will be all-Prince…

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Prince symposium explores identity, Paisley staff memories on day 2


Prince took us to Uptown. He took us to church. And yesterday, he took us to school, drawing several dozen fans and scholars to the University of Minnesota for the second day of their “Prince from Minneapolis” symposium. After a breakfast of starfish (cookies) and coffee, attendees watched a handful of panels, many of which featured…

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Janelle Monae, 'PYNK'

The Chart Show: Monae Makes Us Feel


Shaking up the chart this week were debuts from Nathaniel Rateliff and The Night Sweats, The Decemberists, and Tune-Yards, while Janelle Monae held the top spot for another week.

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The Chart Show

The Chart Show Hall of Fame


When a song stays on The Chart Show's chart for more than 10 weeks, we retire it from the poll and it enters the very prestigious Chart Show Hall of Fame.

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The Chart Show

The Chart Show Ballot


Vote every week for your top five tracks (and enter our weekly ticket giveaway while you're at it), then tune in Wednesday nights at 8 p.m. CT to see if your favorites make the Chart Show, hosted by Mark Wheat!

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BrownMark explains how he and Prince reinvented bass in the ’80s


When you think about the Minneapolis Sound, synths and drum machines probably jump to mind before you think of bass. Possibly the best-known thing Prince ever did regarding bass guitar was to leave it out of one of his most iconic hits: “When Doves Cry.” As BrownMark explains, though, there was a reason that song…

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Oak Center General Store

Oak Center General Store: a landmark music venue at the crossroads


'It's a truly unique venue,' says Barbara Jean of Dusty Heart, describing Oak Center General Store. 'The room itself feels like a cross between an old saloon and a barn loft -- everything from the ceiling to the creaking floor boards is wooden, with an old potbelly stove crackling and cranking out heat from the back of the room.' How much longer the venue will continue to operate is the big question.

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Prince

Purple Current Feedback

Purple Current

Thank you for being among the first people to listen to Purple Current, our music stream dedicated to exploring Prince's musical universe. Have any feedback or thoughts on the programming? Please let us know.

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The Current Sessions®

Phoebe Bridgers performs in The Current studio

Phoebe Bridgers performs in The Current studio

The lyrics of Phoebe Bridgers' songs are so emotionally vivid, it makes sense that when it comes to songwriting, Bridgers follows her gut. 'I don't really have a process that I could write out for anybody or tell anybody how to do it,' Bridgers says. 'It's just whatever happens to be on my mind.' In town for a sold-out show at the Turf Club, Bridgers and her band & stopped at The Current for a session hosted by Jade.

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L7 rock the rafters at The Current

L7 perform in The Current studio

Los Angeles band L7 gave the structural integrity of the Bill Kling Public Media Center in St. Paul got a good test today with a rocking set in the The Current studio, in a session hosted by Mary Lucia. 'We're a meat-and-potatoes rock band with a conscience and some humor,' says L7 frontperson Donita Sparks.

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Margaret Glaspy performs in The Current studio

Margaret Glaspy in The Current studio

'Born Yesterday,' the new EP from Margaret Glaspy, was largely written while Glaspy was on tour. 'That's why it's only three songs!' Glaspy laughs. In town for a show at First Avenue, Glaspy, along with guitarist Julian Lage, stopped in The Current studio for a session hosted by Mary Lucia.

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Oake and Riley Features

Coffee Break: Minnesota music

: On the road with Babes in Toyland,1990.

Tomorrow is Record Store Day and as we prepare to celebrate our local record stores and small businesses, let's spend some time this morning listening to local musicians. So for today's 9:30 Coffee Break, what songs from Minnesota artists do you want to hear?

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american idiot

Today in Music History: 'American Idiot' opens on Broadway


Elvis Presley 'shook up' the singles charts; Deep Purple made their live debut; George Burns was in the Hot 100; numerous artists paid tribute to the late Freddie Mercury; Aerosmith got a grip with their 11th studio album; The Sound of Philadelphia became the first disco song to reach No. 1 in the singles charts; and 'American Idiot' opened on Broadway, Today in Music History.

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