Tag Archives: Live Music

‘American Epic’ and WPT’s Recorded Folk Music

The groundbreaking three-part documentary American Epic takes us around the country to explore how the music of ordinary Americans was recorded for the first time in the 1920s.

In the second part, “Blood and Soil,” airing tonight on WPT at 8 p.m., viewers will explore musical stories from the rural South. Charley Patton, Elder Burch and others made audio recordings of people performing early Delta blues, work songs, gospel, and protest tunes. If you missed “The Big Bang,” last week’s series opener, no worries! Watch it online.

The new series inspired us at WPT to dig into the archives of our decade-long live music program, 30-Minute Music Hour, to find past performances by people inspired by the music you will hear tonight on American Epic.

Here are a few feature performances, captured right here in the WPT studio, that we thought you would enjoy after tuning in.
Continue reading ‘American Epic’ and WPT’s Recorded Folk Music

Attend a Live Taping of 30 Minute Music Hour

30 Minute Music Hour LogoTake off work the afternoon of Monday, July 13 and enjoy some live music at Wisconsin Public Television. Three bands will be joining us to record live sets for the new season of 30 Minute Music Hour, and tickets are totally free. Just send an email to 30mmhaudience@gmail.com to reserve your seats for one or all of the following shows.

FEUFOLLET – 1:15 p.m. concert/audience seated by 1 p.m.
It’d be easy to label this five-piece from Lafayette, La. as a Cajun band, but a deeper listen reveals experimentation with honky-tonk, rock, country and even a bit of pop. During this set, we may need to push back the chairs and make way for dancing. You can also check out Feufollet at La Fete de Marquette in Madison the weekend before their 30MMH show.

TRAPPER SCHOEPP – 2:30 p.m. concert/audience seated by 2:15 p.m.
Milwaukee’s Trapper Schoepp have toured hard the past year, sharing stages with big-name bands like The Jayhawks and the Old 97’s. Huffington Post called Schoepp a “master storyteller.” Add catchy alt-country rock to insightful lyrics and you have a recipe for musical longevity.

THE CACTUS BLOSSOMS – 4 p.m. concert/audience seated by 3:45 p.m.
The Cactus Blossoms are two brothers from the Twin Cities who are true country throwbacks. The duo’s vocal harmonies, which resemble The Everly Brothers, have garnered praise from Garrison Keillor, CMT and BBC Radio.

Be Part of a Live Studio Audience

30 Minute Music Hour is excited to announce Charlie Parr, Chants and William Z. Villian will record studio sessions with us Monday, June 16. The best part is, you’re invited to be part of the audience!

30 Minute Music Hour LogoSample these three musical acts below, and email 30mmhaudience@gmail.com if you’d like to be part of the live studio audience. Include your name, the number of guests and which show you’d like to see.

All shows will be held in the WPT studios in Vilas Hall on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus.

CHARLIE PARR (SOLD OUT  5 p.m. show/audience seated by 4:30)
This Austin, Minn. native currently resides on the shores of Lake Superior in Duluth. Parr is a self-taught guitarist who effortlessly handles 6- and 12 -string guitars, steel guitar and banjo. Get a feel for his live show, recorded here by KEXP in Seattle.


CHANTS (show at 12:30 p.m./audience seated by noon)
Percussionist/composer Jordan Cohen (aka Chants) creates base line beats, loops them and then pours them into experimental electronica that is trance-like and exhilarating. Based in Madison, Chants has produced a number of EPs and in the last year released “I Feel Like I Feel It”. He’s also opened for Dan Deacon. View a beautiful display of Chant’s sound here.


WILLIAM Z. VILLAIN (3 p.m. show/audience seated by 2:30)
The eclectic style of Madison’s William Z. Villain is best described, well, in the band’s own words… “Darting between Balkan groove, early American jazz and bossanova with jagged mathy precision; William Z. Villain continues to stun bartenders and sometimes even audiences with his dark demon-crooner vocals and fantastically furious finger-style guitar technique.”

Want to see three great Midwest bands Monday, June 16 for free? Just send an email to 30mmhaudience@gmail.com to reserve your seat. Fo more music, check out video of our past studio sessions at wpt.org/30mmh.



All the Best Music – On One Public Television Station

Pioneer on 30-Minute Music HourIt’s pretty hard to find a public television fan who hasn’t heard of a little music show called Austin City Limits. But did you know Wisconsin Public Television has its own little music show called the 30-Minute Music Hour?

OK. 30-MMH is a bit more little than ACL is — we haven’t yet welcomed a Jack White or Steve Miller into our studios. But over the years we have recorded plenty of reputable acts (Peter Yarrow, Carolina Chocolate Drops) and a few that broke out after performing on the 30-MMH (JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound, Kings Go Forth).

I’m happy to say both shows are rolling out new shows all month long. Just this week, 30-MMH recorded three local bands Pioneer, PHOX and Miles Nielsen and the Rusted Hearts. Those episodes are set to air in February, but why wait when you can watch all three online now.

Browse the entire 30-MMH video archive. Or, if you prefer the big screen, check out the upcoming broadcast schedule. New episodes premiere 10:30 p.m. Fridays.

And don’t forget about new music from Norah Jones, Tim McGraw, Esperanza Spalding and several other great bands premiering soon on Austin City Limits. Watch Sundays nights at 11 or online for up to one month after the broadcast.

Video: Miles Nielsen and the Rusted Hearts on 30-Minute Music Hour.