music | Connecticut Public Radio


Anthony Fantano

Jan 14, 2013
Jonathan Scranton

Anthony Fantano describes himself as a musician, vegan, troublemaker, health nut, radio host, b/vlogger, and indie music spelunker from the great state of Connecticut. Fantano has an affinity for music and reviewing new music on his YouTube channel, which has over 100,000 subscribers and 25 million views. He hosts a weekly radio show called The Needle Drop on WNPR that airs in Connecticut, Colorado, Montana, Minnesota, New Mexico, and Idaho. He calls his followers “needle drops” and has a massive collection of albums.

The Monkees were the first group to exhibit all or most of the qualities we now associate with the term "boy band." They were assembled through auditions. They had a set of visual styles imposed on them. They were incredibly popular with tweenaged girls. They were plagued by the accusation that there was less to them than meets the eye. That last accusation was false, by the way.

My Favorite Music of 2012: Part 4

Jan 9, 2013

This week on The Needle Drop, it's the show's fourth installment in our look back at some of the best records of 2012--don't worry, we're almost done. We'll be flying through releases from TNGHT, Dope Body, Holograms, iamamiwhoami, and more.

My Favorite Music of 2012: Part 3

Jan 2, 2013

This week on The Needle Drop, we head further into my favorite albums of 2012 with my third episode in this series.

The Best Jazz Of 2012

Dec 27, 2012
Flickr Creative Commons, Nina Matthews Photography

My Favorite Music of 2012: Part 2

Dec 19, 2012

This week on The Needle Drop, we continue our revisit to some of the best releases 2012 had to offer. We bring tracks from Soap&Skin, Spiritualized, Bit K.R.I.T., BADBADNOTGOOD, and more!

My Favorite Music of 2012: Part 1

Dec 11, 2012

This week on The Needle Drop, we're starting our revisit to the best records of 2012. We'll be doing it for the next several episodes, actually. Here, we're revisiting past releases from post-punkers Cloud Nothings, electronic jazz experimentalists Portico Quartet, and pained singer-songwriter Perfume Genius.

Remembering Dave Brubeck

Dec 7, 2012
Steven Sussman, Litchfield Jazz Festival

This week, we lost Dave Brubeck.

You’ve been hearing about his music and its impact on generations.

You might know that he made his home in Connecticut and influenced many artists here.

You might not know about his work in fighting the spread of communism during the cold war. Or his work for civil rights, by leading integrated bands at a time when that was not the norm.

Angel Olsen Gets Evens

Dec 4, 2012

This week on The Needle Drop, we've got new tracks from Zoo Babies, Dumbo Gets Mad, and Holly Herndon. We'll also be diving into the latest releases from D.C. underground vets the Evens and up-and-coming singer-songwriter Angel Olsen.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The ukulele was not always obscure. Two of the biggest stars of the 20th century used them as their principal instruments. One is a name you probably don't know, but George Formby was a enormous sensation in Great Britain on stage and in movies in the 1920s and '30s. He specialized in playing a banjo-shaped ukulele, and he trafficked in comical, mischievous songs full of double entendres. 

Greed Waltzes and the Order of Noise

Nov 27, 2012

This week on the show, we've got new tracks from the likes of Michael Price, Voivod, Veronica Falls, and Susanne Sundfor. We'll also be diving into the latest full-length effort from UK music producer Vessel.

Flickr Creative Commons, richkidsunite

A good kids' song is sometimes just a good song.

Chion Wolf

If you know Paul Winter, you're most likely to know him as the musician who -- more than anyone else -- fused jazz and environmentalism, with a long series of recordings celebrating nature and lamenting extinction. He has come to be known most of all for his Solstice concerts at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City. 

Sweet Beats and Vintage Folk

Nov 14, 2012

This week on the Needle Drop, we've got new tunes from Hot Sugar, M-O-D, Code Orange Kids, Dumbo Gets Mad, and more. We'll also be diving into the latest album from singer-songwriter Jessica Pratt.

Flickr Creative Commons, AndywithCamera

In the fall of 1967, I was a deeply uncool 13 year old who knew relatively little about the Beatles.

Luxury Problems and Dripping Piles

Nov 7, 2012

This week on the Needle Drop, we've got new tracks from Diamond Rings, Dirty Projectors, and folk singer Jessica Pratt. We'll also be diving into the latest releases from Andy Stott and Pile.

Colorful Beats and m.A.A.d. Cities

Oct 31, 2012

This week on the Needle Drop, we're trying out new tracks from Chelsea Wolfe, Andy Stott, and Mac DeMarco, too. We'll also be exploring the latest full-length releases from Compton rapper Kendrick Lamar, and part-jazz drummer, part-hip hop producer Karriem Riggins.

NO LOVE and Conscious Rap

Oct 24, 2012

This week on the Needle Drop, we're listening to new tracks from Holy Ghost!, Daphni, and Jean Grae. We'll also be playing tracks off the lastest releases from Macklemore and Death Grips.

Flickr Creative Commons, dualdflipflop

A capella groups are less nerdy, more cool these days.

Godspeed Returns and Some Psych Rock Jams

Oct 16, 2012

This week on the Needle Drop, we're playing the latest tracks from Haleek Maul, How to Destroy Angels, Rhye, and the Babies. We'll also be diving into the colorfully psychedelic sounds of the new Tame Impala LP, Lonerism, as well as the full-length return of post-rock heavyweights, Godspeed You! Black Emperor.

Jackie McLean's Sugar Free Saxophone

Oct 12, 2012
Trevor Parker (Flickr Creative Commons)

Jackie McLean had one of the most amazing musical lives of the 20th century. He learned jazz in Harlem from the great pianist Bud Powell...he idolized, then sat in for, Charlie Parker. His first recording gig was with Miles Davis....and he played with all the greats.

Deerhoofs and Mountain Goats

Oct 9, 2012

This week on the Needle Drop, we've got new tracks from Stalin Gardens, Fins, Foxygen, and the Bad Plus. We're also diving into the latest full-length releases from Deerhoof and the Mountain Goats.

Chion Wolf

Today, hear a live, in-studio performance by and conversation with the Punch Brothers, before their performance at Jorgensen Theater at UConn, Storrs. They are a five-piece band enjoying an explosion of critical esteem and new popularity over the past few years. Its leader, Chris Thile, just won a MacArthur Genius Grant, and has been working with giants from other genres, including cellist, Yo-Yo Ma, and jazz great Brad Mehldau.

See all the photos by Chion Wolf here.

Beats, Beats, and More Beats

Oct 3, 2012

This week on the Needle Drop, we're diving into the latest beatmusic albums from Flying Lotus and the Gaslamp Killer. Both are at the forefront of some pretty interesting musical ideas right now with their respective albums, Until the Quiet Comes and Breakthrough.

An Emo Revival and Grizzly Bear Brings Sheilds

Sep 25, 2012

This week on the Needle Drop, we're exploring new tracks from a variety of genres from Flatlander, METZ, Dinosaur Jr., and the Bruiser Brigade. We'll also be diving into the latest albums from Grizzly Bear and Title Fight.

"Rave On Vol. 1" cover art

In the mid 1980's, the future looked pretty bright for the New London rockers The Reducers. They were riding a wave of critical acclaim. They were the darlings of college radio along with groups like REM and the Smithereens, and they toured the world with bands like The Ramones and The Replacements.

But that major record label deal and breakthrough into the mainstream never materialized, and after years on the road, The Reducers came back to New London to play shows closer to home and they never stopped making music.

Falsetto Freak Folk and a Cumbia Explosion

Sep 19, 2012

In addition to our usual assembly of new tracks and singles, we'll also be diving into the latest album from Woods, Bend Beyond. The album is a pretty awesome and modern take on psychedelic folk, being graced with the band's usual falsetto vocals. We've also got new tracks from Ondatropica's self-titled debut. The Columbian cumbia supergroup is defying genre with over an hour of music on their new LP.

Flickr Creative Commons, Jsome1

For years now, we've been getting Wally Lamb, Eric Danton and Joan Holliday together to talk about pop music and share the little treasures they've found. It's always a fun show, and the three of them have great chemistry.

Witty Songwriters and a Tribute to Japan

Sep 12, 2012

This week on the Needle Drop, we've got new tracks from Dustin Wong, the Gaslamp Killer, Rustie, and Converge. We'll also be diving into the latest album releases from singer-songwriters Cat Power and Jens Lekman.

Moody Dance Pop and Some Heady House

Sep 4, 2012

This week on the Needle Drop, we've got new tracks from Ondatropica and the Meridian Brothers. We'll also be trying out the latest releases from Matthew Dear and Four Tet.