Born and raised in Cook, Minnesota on the Boise Forte Reservation, musician Keith Secola has an intimate relationship with Anishinabe culture. Producer Daniel Zamzow looks at the genre Secola calls “Native Americana” is a musical journey that spans the past, present, and future.
Every family has traditions. In Abbie Betinis’ family, the tradition is Christmas carols. Britt Aamodt looks at how a great grandfather and great uncle led to Betinis to become a composer of carols.
Jayanthi Kyle and Wes Burdine from the group Gospel Machine were finishing the lyrics and melody of a new song hours before Kyle had to premier it outside the Government Center in Minneapolis. In this segment, Britt Aamodt examines how their song, “Hand in Hand,” became the unofficial anthem of Black Lives Matter – Minneapolis.
If you took accordion lessons in Duluth between the 1950s and ‘70s, you probably had John Copiskey as a teacher. And if Copiskey was your teacher, then you probably played on a Duluth Accordionaires album. Britt Aamodt shares the story of a music teacher, his students and their new accordion sound.
In the 1990s, Venus de Mars was the goddess of Minneapolis dark glam with her group All the Pretty Horses. Today, she is an icon. Britt Aamodt takes a look at how a musical rebel became a trailblazer for transgender artists.
The ancient Hmong culture developed a number of musical instruments. Britt Aamodt looks at the qeej, an instrument whose tradition that is kept alive and celebrated by St. Paul’s Hmong community.
Cornbread Harris was a Minneapolis pianist noodling around with a song recorded by the Count Basie Orchestra. Augie Garcia was a guitarist from St. Paul, who started improvising lyrics over Cornbread’s piano. Britt Aamodt tells how together the two came up with Minnesota’s first recorded rock-n-roll single.
Bruce Swedien set up his first recording studio in his parents’ basement in Minneapolis. But he’s best known for his work with Michael Jackson. Britt Aamodt looks back at 1982 and Swedien’s contribution to “Billie Jean”, the breakout track from Thriller, still the best-selling album of all time.