Stories by Kurt Kohnen
The hip-hop artist Indian K is a member of the Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians. He spent the early part of his childhood living on his tribe’s reservation. His life has taken him on a long and winding road through foster care and prison and back into the community as a respected musician.
This summer, the entire nation had the chance to meet the group of homeless musicians and singers who first assembled in a small metal church in 2016. As contestants on "America’s Got Talent," the group has wowed the judges and moved into the contest's semi-finals.
As part of a new multimedia project, Alfred Howard is writing 100 songs — each one accompanied by an original watercolor painting by his mother.
The San Diego-based trio only started playing a year ago. But by their second show, they were signed to the same label that backed Amy Winehouse and Sharon Jones.
Gonzalez, who is known for his experimental style and looping techniques, joined Midday Edition on Thursday as part of our annual summer music series.
"Como De Allstars" is the bands first album in seven years.
From his upbringing in Tijuana to life in Carlsbad, Maldonado opens up about his musical influences.
Shay is a four-time San Diego Music Award winner. Her new album debuted number one on the Billboard Blues Chart.
This weekend music lovers can choose between San Diego Opera’s "Aida" and New Village Arts’ "Toxic Avenger The Musical."
In the final installment of Midday Edition's first summer music series we hear from one of San Diego's finest bluegrass bands. Prairie Sky stopped by the KPBS studio to perform and talk about Appalachian music.
The band La Diabla brings its bi-national dance party wherever it goes. As part of the Midday Edition Summer Music Series, musicians Ivan Rodriguez, Adrian Rodriguez and Jose Bolanos stopped by the KPBS studio to share their influences and some history about cumbia music.
As part of the Midday Edition Summer music series San Diego's Euphoria Brass Band stopped by KPBS to share their special brand of funky west coast “second line” jazz and talk about how they started.
San Diego will have a chance to hear the pianist, composer and bandleader, Herbie Hancock in concert Tuesday night at Humphreys Concerts by the bay. Hancock joined Midday Edition Monday to talk about who influenced his sound and creativity.
San Diego family band The Sea Monks perform their coastal country tunes in the KPBS studio.
The San Diego band Rebecca Jade and the Cold Fact have a funk infused-soul sound that hearkens back to the 70s Motown and Stax-record era.
The San Diego band, the Parker Meridien, performs as part of the KPBS Midday Edition Summer Music Series.
Denson talks about the inspiration behind his band's new album, "Gnomes and Badgers."
- Oct. 3, 2018
- By Kurt Kohnen
Fifty years ago, Wayne Kramer and his band the Motor City 5 released their debut album “Kick Out the Jams,” high energy rock 'n roll that provided the soundtrack to a youth movement of social and political revolution.
San Diego’s own Robert Lopez has lived an exciting life performing around the world, but not really as himself. He's better known, either on national television shows or opening for rock stars in a gold lamé Mariachi suit, as the Mexican Elvis, El Vez.
For over a decade the Zzymzzy Quartet has been transporting audiences back in time with their 1930’s era music. Inspired by Django Reinhardt and the American Songbook, these San Diegans have become an integral part of the swing dance scene.
The B-Side Players are holding a record release party Saturday at the Music Box. The group joined Midday Edition to perform titles off their latest album.
When you think about ukulele music what comes to mind? Gentle strumming on the beaches of Waikiki? Perhaps an old Elvis movie? Prepare to be re-introduced to this charming instrument, by the amazing repertoire of the Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra.
Ahead of the annual music festival in Normal Heights, San Diego country artist Sara Petite performs live in the KPBS studios.
San Diego Opera brings back rising star Rene Barbera for a solo recital this Saturday at the Balboa Theater.
The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers performed at the Casbah on Kettner Boulevard in June.
The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble has a new self-titled debut album featuring laid back, soulful vibes with song titles like "Strolling Adams" and "City Heights."
Before Balboa Park is filled with music Sunday for the first "Make Music San Diego" festival, Hot Pstormi previews the event with a live in-studio performance on Midday Edition.
San Diego music legend, Tomcat Courtney stops by KPBS to tell stories and sing some songs.
A preview of San Diego's annual Cajun-fest, Gator by the Bay, with music from the band Billy Lee and the Swamp Critters.
To celebrate Black History Month, Cygnet Theater brings in some of the cast from August Wilson’s “Gem of the Ocean” to share a scene.
If you feel Christmas has become a crass commercial event, then here's the perfect thing for you: an original radio play called "Christmas, Inc." The play was created for KPBS by Columbia Street Films and it serves up a sly comic tale of a very corporate Christmas.
Listen to "mars is Heaven!" the second radio play from Ray Bradbury and performed by Circle Circle dot dot.
In September, Circle Circle dot dot did a fundraiser called "Invasion" in which they performed five radio dramas. KPBS arts reporter Beth Accomando was so impressed she asked them to come in and record the two Ray Bradbury plays for air. Listen to the full play here and watch a behind the scenes video.
- Nov. 6, 2009
- By Kurt Kohnen
UK musician Frank Turner exploits the commonalities of folk and punk rock and demands that you join in.
- Oct. 21, 2009
- By Kurt Kohnen
Though Culture Lust contributor Kurt Kohnen has been listening to the music of hip-hop artist Brother Ali for years, the lyrics and music still resonate. Brother Ali has a new album called "Us" and he plays live at Canes in Mission Beach on Wednesday, October 21st.
You've heard his songs, but you may not have heard of him. JJ Cale is one of the most low-profile rock 'n' roll legends you will ever find. His songs "After Midnight", "Cocaine", and "Call Me the Breeze" have been made famous by artists like Eric Clapton and Lynyrd Skynyrd. We speak to JJ Cale about his musical influences, his friendship with Clapton, and why he's opted to stay out of the spotlight over the years.
How have cell phones changed our lives? Inventor of the mobile phone, and purveyor of portability, Marty Cooper is still at it. We'll find out what the "father of the mobile phone" thinks about texting, and how he thinks we can improve wireless communications.