The Current Rewind

The Current Rewind

You know great music when you hear it. But do you know where it came from? Host Andrea Swensson and the team bring you original reporting on Minnesota music, fording scenes and decades to put unsung stories on the map.

Listen on Apple PodcastsSubscribe: Apple Podcasts, NPR One, RSS, Spotify, Stitcher

The Current Rewind is made possible in part by the Minnesota Legacy Amendment's Arts and Culture Heritage Fund.

Playlist: Aar Maanta Youtube hits

YouTube has become an indispensable tool for Somali artists to share their music and create an online community. To give you a sense of the music and stories that exist on London-based Somali musician Aar Maanta's channel, we put together a list of some of the singer-songwriter's videos.

The Current Rewind: Aan WadaMidnimayno Minnesota

The Current Rewind

Ask most casual Minnesota music fans about the West Bank neighborhood of Minneapolis, and they'll probably tell you about the folk and blues hippie scene of the '60s and '70s. These days, the West Bank is home to a thriving Somali population, and several Somali-Minnesotans are famous throughout the diaspora for their own music and poetry. In this episode, we learn about music and community from our Somali neighbors.

Photos: A tour of Minneapolis' Cedar-Riverside neighborhood

Businesses on Cedar Avenue in Minneapolis.

With venues like the Cedar Cultural Center, Palmer's Bar, and Mixed Blood Theatre, Minneapolis' West Bank has become a hub for Somali music and culture. Cedar-Riverside resident and KFAI radio host Abdirizak Bihi takes us for a tour of his neighborhood, which he calls "Little Mogadishu."

Map: The Andrews Sisters Guide to Mound, Minn.

Map of Andrews Sisters landmarks in Mound, Minn.

The third episode of 'The Current Rewind' centers on the Andrews Sisters, the vocal trio who became emblems of the United States during World War II. Not many people know it, but their favorite getaway was Mound, Minn., a small tourist town where their uncles lived. We asked illustrator Kaitlyn Bryan to paint us a picture of the Andrews Sisters' Mound.

The Andrews Sisters: America's soundtrack to WWII

The Andrews Sisters: Maxene, Patty and Laverne.

Patty, Maxene, and LaVerne Andrews grew up in Minnesota as daughters of Greek immigrants. Just a few decades after their family relocated to the U.S., the Andrew Sisters became a key cultural representation of patriotism and hope during WWII.

The Current Rewind: The Andrews Sisters & Lynda Wells

The Current Rewind

The Andrews Sisters, the vocal trio who sold nearly 100 million records during their lifetimes, came to symbolize the United States during WWII. You'd think their story is settled. But in this episode, Lynda Wells -- Maxene's manager and longtime companion -- shares another side of the outgoing middle sister. Plus, historian Tom Rockvam talks about the Andrews' "heart home," just 25 miles outside of their hometown, Minneapolis.

The Current Rewind: Pachyderm Studio

The Current Rewind

Can you imagine PJ Harvey walking down a small-town Main Street? Kurt Cobain antiquing in farm country? Yup, that happened. It was all thanks to Pachyderm Studio, a rural recording facility that used to be a family home. In this episode, we'll meet that family, plus a dozen musicians and engineers who've recorded some unforgettable work at the studio. Engineer Steve Albini tells us why Pachyderm is so special, and Lori Barbero from Babes in Toyland shares a story about taking Nirvana to the Mall of America.

Playlist: The sounds of Pachyderm Studio

Pachyderm Studios in Cannon Falls

Many fans know that Nirvana recorded their 1993 album In Utero at Pachyderm Studio, or that PJ Harvey visited the studio to record Rid of Me. But did you know that Pachyderm is also where Hippo Campus laid down their first full-length album Landmark — and where Andrew Bird recorded parts of Armchair Apocrypha? This playlist walks you through some of Pachyderm's most iconic recordings, from 1988 to today.

Interview: Gully Boys go to Pachyderm

Gully Boys

In just three days, Gully Boys recorded their debut album, Not So Brave, at Pachyderm with engineer Nick Tveitbakk. While visiting, they sat on the same fireplace where Nirvana once posed for a photo and walked the same Cannon Falls streets as PJ Harvey. The Current Rewind producer Cecilia Johnson sat down with Gully Boys to talk about their experience at Pachyderm. We couldn't fit all of the interview into the episode, but you can hear their full conversation here.