Marissa Lorusso

Warning: This article contains descriptions of alleged sexual assault and misconduct.

Updated Aug. 17, 9:15 a.m. to include a response from Mark Kozelek.


Three women have come forward with allegations of sexual misconduct against musician Mark Kozelek, who frequently performs as Sun Kil Moon. The accusations were published by Pitchfork on Thursday in a report by Amy Zimmerman.

British singer Vera Lynn, whose touching ballads helped sustain the spirits of Britons during WWII, died today, according to a statement from the Dame Vera Lynn Children's Charity. She was 103 years old.

Frances Quinlan showed up to NPR HQ in Washington, D.C., in February, just after Presidents' Day — which explains her multiple mid-performance jokes about White House residents. But even if her Tiny Desk concert had happened in July, the allusions wouldn't have surprised me. As a songwriter, Quinlan is piercingly astute at making connections between her present reality and the wider world; her songs often narrate other stories she's heard, fictional or real, from a place of wide-eyed empathy.

Lately, we've been sharing some of favorite entries to the 2020 Tiny Desk Contest, which closed for entries on April 27. We've seen entries from every state in the country; from big bands and solo artists; and from a huge range of styles and genres — and now, our judges will start to comb through our entries to find a winner.

Like many who have graced the Tiny Desk before him, the awkwardness of performing in a working office wasn't lost on Harry Styles. "It just feels like you're in the way," he joked. But when you watch his set from behind Bob Boilen's desk, you'd never suspect any discomfort.

From the moment Carly Rae Jepsen arrived at NPR HQ for her Tiny Desk concert, she brought an obvious sense of joy. Take, for example, her sound check: Working with her band of longtime collaborators, she seemed downright delighted, beaming at the musicians as she gave notes after each meticulous run-through.

For the past decade, Frances Quinlan has built a reputation as an expertly narrative songwriter and a peerless singer in the indie-rock world with her band, Hop Along.

How does one of the biggest stars in American popular music go missing?

Punk rock might be a relatively young genre, but the legend of its history has already become more or less solidified.

Ask what makes punk punk and you'll probably get a story that starts in 1970s London, or maybe New York; you'll get The Sex Pistols, The Ramones or The Clash; counterculture, anti-establishment and leather jackets.

After Camp Cope's second song at the Tiny Desk, singer Georgia "Maq" McDonald let out a tiny laugh. "We've never done this before — we've never been quiet," she said. "Not once in our entire lives!" Bassist Kelly-Dawn Hellmrich joked that it was perhaps a "good lesson" to "rock out in your mind." ("Thinking," Maq clarified.)

It's not every day you see a drag queen playing an autoharp. But for Trixie Mattel — comedian, musician and, as of last week, winner of the third season of RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars — country music and drag go together like high heels and false lashes.

Each time Tiny Desk Contest season rolls around, the whole team at NPR Music gets a chance to discover new (or new-to-us) artists from all across the country. We're still accepting entries for a few more weeks — until March 25 at 11:59 p.m. ET — but we've already started seeing entries we love. Here are a few that have caught our eyes (and ears) so far.

Jackie Venson, "Always Free"

In music and the culture it reflects, 2017 was predictably unpredictable: idols fell, empires shook, consensus was scarce. This conversation is one of five on The Record with artists, makers and thinkers whose work captured something unique about a chaotic year, and hinted at bigger revelations around the bend.

As Japanese Breakfast, Michelle Zauner writes sparkling, opulent dream pop about grief and love (and, occasionally, robots). After releasing its debut album, Psychopomp last year, the band returned with this year's stunning Soft Sounds From Another Planet. Where Psychopomp, written in the immediate aftermath of the death of Zauner's mother, zeroed in on the experience of Zauner's grief, Soft Sounds widens her aperture, featuring paeans to her coping mechanisms, ruminations on crooked relationship dynamics and said sci-fi robot fantasy.

Updated at 9:40 p.m. ET

Like U2, Ed Sheeran has also canceled his concert in St. Louis because of safety concerns.

The cancellations follow protests in the city prompted by the acquittal of a former police officer, who had been charged with first-degree murder in the fatal shooting of a black man.