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 Apr 1 - 7, 2004 

Blue Note

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Chris Smither

Chris Smither always manages to sound real on his records. Like he's living the songs he sings every day. In a sense, that's exactly what the 50-year-old acoustic bluesman is doing—living the very truths he sets to music. Smither's childhood wasn't unpleasant, but it wasn't stable either. His parents, both university professors, moved the family from Miami to Ecuador to Texas to New Orleans to Paris back to New Orleans, all by the time Smither was 13 years old and already fascinated by music.


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Tim Henningsen

Aural Fixation

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Another March has passed, and with it another installment of the South By Southwest Music Festival in Austin, Texas, where several of us go every year to scout the newest, coolest bands. OK, we all see a few older cool bands, too, but most of the reason we go every year is to give you a brief preview of bands to watch when we get back. Plus, it keeps us from killing ourselves (and each other) the remaining months of the year. Here we go with SXSW 2004 Top 10:


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Everything is Everything

Lauryn Hill • hip-hop

By August March
It's been 20 years since Lauryn Hill's ground-breaking neo-soul inflected hip-hop recording, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill dropped. Since then, Hill's once for-sure-going-to-be-hot career has moved in fits and jumps as the artist behind such megahits like her rendition of “Killing Me Softly,” “Doo-Wop” and “Ex-Factor” wrestled with fame, responsibility and fans…
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