Stephen Kallao

Ian Noe has an incredible way with words. On his debut album, they are not the most uplifting or pleasant. They're a reflection of what he's seen growing up and living in rural Kentucky.

Craig Finn is one of the most eloquent storytellers in music. The people at the heart of his songs are filled with emotions and often flaws. As he says, he's interested in the high and the hangover.

Cedric Burnside is a drummer, guitarist, singer and performer. You can hear all of those elements come together on Benton County Relic, his latest album. He grew up in Benton County in rural Mississippi where he was raised by his grandfather, the late bluesman, R.L. Burnside.

Looking back on the past year of sessions this week, World Cafe is digging into the archives for some performances and interviews since last January. You'll hear sessions with artists including young producer, singer, multi-instrumentalist King Princess, the young rockers of Cage The Elephant, folk musician Rhiannon Giddens and more.

Listen to all the sessions below.

A chance accident performing a simple skateboard trick changed the shape of the latest Beirut record, Gallipoli. What was supposed to be a recording session in New York City ended up happening in Berlin and the result is a different set of songs that retain that signature Beirut sound.

Shovels & Rope's latest album is called By Blood and it resonates out into all of their work. Of course, the duo of Michael Trent and Cary Ann Hearst are partners, musically and in life. They recently celebrated the birth of their second child, which means the family now is four strong on the road.

Working towards your goals often involves overcoming adversity, right? It's on every motivational poster out there. Daniel and Sarah, the duo that is Pure Bathing Culture know this well.

My guests for this session are sweethearts. Like, the nicest guys you could hope to speak to. Calexico's Joey Burns and Iron & Wine's Sam Beam are here to talk about the record they made, and it's worth mentioning that Years to Burn is one of my favorites of the year.

Lollapalooza is happening this weekend in Chicago and when you think of the giant festival, I hope you think of the man who started it all, Perry Farrell.

I don't know how to describe what the word smoky means in singing, but I think you know it when you hear it. My guest, Molly Burch, has it in spades. It's no surprise she's a classically-trained jazz vocalist, going to school for it at the University of North Carolina in Asheville, N.C.

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