As the World Cup enters the quarter-finals, Mark Wheat reflects on the tournament it's been so far, and what may lie ahead as the world watches the progression to the final. Plus, a music pick!
The Black Keys hold on to the top spot again this week, which might pale in comparison to another sign of their success: Umami restaurant chain in California has honored the band with its own burger! For every purchase, $1 will be donated to the Black Keys Alfred McMoore Memorial Endowment Fund.
Before making her Minnesota debut with a sold out show at the Varsity Theater, Aussie Courtney Barnett stopped by The Current studios to perform a few songs off <em>A Sea of Split Peas</em>. Between songs, Barnett and host Mark Wheat talked about her charming, quirky lyrics, what it was like touring with Billy Bragg and, of course, the World Cup.
Jack White lost again to his nemesis the Black Keys for this week's top spot, but he seems to be winning friends with his live show. <a href="http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/jack-white-live-in-l-a-like-watching-led-zeppelin-play-the-opry-20140612"><em>Rolling Stone</em></a> described his Los Angeles performance, "like watching Led Zeppelin play the Grand Ole Opry: raw blues power, finesse and a generous helping of fiddle." That didn't stop <A href="http://www.mtv.com/news/1846688/jack-white-bonnaroo-recap/">Jack dissing the venerable rag on stage at the huge Bonnaroo Festival</a> last weekend. "Does a tabloid like <em>Rolling Stone</em> make music happen?" he asked the crowd. "You and I make it exist!"
Ian McLagan is a living legend of popular music. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Small Faces and the Faces, McLagan has played with the Rolling Stones, Chuck Berry, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, and any number of other musical luminaries.
As Group G begins its matches, Mark Wheat gives a preview of today's USA v Ghana match, which kicks off at 5 p.m. Mark will be at the Nomad World Pub in Minneapolis during the game, and he'll be checking in on-air with Mary Lucia and with Mac Wilson.
tUnE-yArDs takes the top spot for the very first time this week after another very tight race. She joined our friends at KEXP last week for an <a href="http://www.npr.org/event/music/317381217/kexp-presents-tune-yards">in-studio performance of "Real Thing"</a> off her new album <em>Nikki Nack</em>.
In town to play a gig at the 7th Street Entry in Minneapolis, Eagulls stopped in to The Current's studio to chat with Mark Wheat and to play some tracks off their self-titled, debut release.
On The Ball with Mark Wheat returns as the World Cup gets ready to kick off in Brazil. Mark shares his thoughts about the Group Stage of the tournament, and of course, features not only a music pick but a special playlist created by England's Wayne Rooney.
The Black Keys are extending their online beef with Jack White to our Chart as they narrowly win the race to the top. Thank goodness Merrill of tUnE-yArDs is in there to keep them separated! The Black Keys have <a href="http://pitchfork.com/news/55396-the-black-keys-extend-tour/">released the video for "Fever" and extended their tour</a> which includes <a href="http://www.thecurrent.org/events/2014/10/24/639/the-black-keys-with-jake-bugg/">Target Center on Oct. 24</a> with opening act Jake Bugg. Wherever you are on the planet, they're coming to a town near you soon.
Between gigs at their two-night stand at First Avenue in Minneapolis, Conor Oberst and Dawes stopped in to The Current's studio to play an acoustic set and to chat with Mark Wheat.
St. Vincent returns to the top this week to end her stay on the Chart with her second induction to the Chart Show Hall of Fame ("Cruel" off <em>Strange Mercy</em> was inducted in 2012) along with another debutante Haley Bonar. After two inductions last week and the Strypes and Lana Del Rey falling off the Chart, we had room for four new entries.
First Aid Kit hit the top this week ahead of their <a href="http://www.thecurrent.org/events/2014/06/03/532/first-aid-kit/">sold out show at the Varsity Theater June 3</a>, a week before their new album <em>Stay Gold</em> drops.
On tour supporting her new album, 'Make My Head Sing', Jessica Lea Mayfield stopped in to The Current's studio before playing a show at the Turf Club in St. Paul. While at The Current, Mayfield played a few songs and chatted with Mark Wheat.
In town to play a sold-out show at First Avenue, HAIM stopped in to The Current's studio to play some songs off their album, 'Days Are Gone', and to talk with Mark Wheat.