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Curtis Elledge: What Are You Listening To?

Research flower grower Curtis Elledge
Research flower grower Curtis Elledge

Each month on All Things Considered, we turn a few minutes over to our listeners to find out about what music is on their minds. It may be indie rock or Indian raga, techno or tiki. This week's musical picks come from Curtis Elledge, a research flower grower from Santa Cruz, California.

His first selection is "Confusion Errorist" by the Dutch band The Ex, from their recent album Turn. The Ex have been making music for 26 years and combine political statements, international sounds and the driving rhythm of a stand-up bass, often played with a bow.

Elledge also picks "Work Song/Haitian Fight Song," which was originally written by Charles Mingus. He selects the version performed by Max Nagl, Otto Lechner and Bradley Jones off the album Flamingos. This Viennese trio features Lechner playing the accordion. On this song, he uses his instrument to take on Mingus's driving bass line.

For his third pick, Elledge turns to French "musique concrete." Louis Sclavis' "Reponses a Gavotte" from the album Les Violences de Rameau is a song that Elledge says "has something for everyone." It starts out as a fun jazzy caper, then adds a heavy distorted guitar part. Finally, it morphs through several other freeform musical movements.

All three selections are hybrids -- kind of like what Elledge grows as a horticulturist.

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