KEYS TO HER HEART: Hearts & Plugs recording artist Grace Joyner plays a Casiotone organ from the '70s that she received as a gift. “I ended up really loving it. I’m a big fan of eerie, romantic sounds,” she says. “If I didn’t play the organ, I’d feel like something was missing.” Photo by Apartment A

Grace Joyner headlines Hearts & Plugs showcase at New Mountain

If singer-songwriter Grace Joyner’s path to fronting a band meandered a bit, the end justifies the means. Her debut EP, Young Fools, is eloquent and self-possessed without being overworked or overwrought. The coolness of the spacey keyboard tones and shimmery percussion is well-matched to Joyner’s simultaneously rounded and remote vocal. The musician — who plays […]

KNOW HOW TO WORK IT: Big Freedia, one of the only bounce artists with prominent national exposure, teaches fans to lose themselves in the music with sage advice such as “release your wiggle." Photo courtesy of the musician

Big Freedia, Queen of bounce, plays New Mountain on Sept. 30

It’s just after noon on the final day of 2013’s South by Southwest in Austin, Texas. The fatigue that the marathon music festival inflicts is readily evident in a grand ballroom in Austin’s labyrinthine convention center. A small crowd has gathered to watch New Orleans rapper Big Freedia (pronounced FREE-duh) perform a daytime set, but their […]