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In Soundcheck's “Year To Remember” series, we ask musicians, critics and other guests to talk about a single year that was monumental in music. And, we want to know - what musical years stand out in your memory? Send us an email at

Year To Remember: 1970

Monday, June 06, 2011

1970: It was a pivotal year, at times turbulent -- and it gave us some of the most enduring moments in music history. We kick off our week-long series "Year to Remember" with David Browne, author of the new book “Fire and Rain: The Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel, James Taylor and CSNY and the Lost Story of 1970.”

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Year to Remember: 1955

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

1955 was filled with landmark albums, classic songs – and the rise of rock ‘n’ roll. Will Friedwald, author of “A Biographical Guide to the Great Jazz and Pop Singers," joins us to talk about this "Year to Remember." 

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Year to Remember: 1992

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

When historians reflect on the 1990s and popular music, 1991 tends to get all the glory. After all, it was the breakthrough year for Nirvana, the genre-hopping Lollapalooza music festival, and a slate of progressive hip hop artists led by A Tribe Called Quest. But Village Voice music editor Maura Johnston has another year in mind: 1992. In the next installment of our "Year to Remember" series, Johnston joins us to discuss the year that brought us not one, but three classic debuts: Pavement's "Slanted and Enchanted," Mary J. Blige's "What's the 411?" and PJ Harvey's "Dry."

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Year to Remember: 1988

Thursday, June 09, 2011

As Soundcheck gears up for tonight’s Mic Check showcase with rapper Blitz the Ambassador, Queens MC Homeboy Sandman and others, hip hop historian Dan Charnas joins us to discuss hip hop’s golden year: 1988.

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Year to Remember: 1976

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Yes, it was 1976 was the year of the United States Bicentennial. But it also marked an important time in contemporary American music. Philip Glass’s “Einstein on the Beach” premiered that year, as did Steve Reich’s “Music for 18 Musicians.” American composer Ned Rorem also picked up a Pulitzer that year for his suite, “Air Music.” American Music Center Composer Advocate Frank Oteri joins us to elaborate.

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Year to Remember: 1959

Friday, June 10, 2011

Miles Davis put out Kind of Blue, and Charles Mingus released Mingus Ah Um. Dave Brubeck played "Take 5" on the album Time Out, and John Coltrane made Giant Steps. Oh, and don’t forget: Ornette Coleman created The Shape of Jazz to Come. Tying them all together? The year 1959. We explore this influential year in jazz with Ashley Kahn, music historian and the author of the book Kind of Blue: The Making of the Miles Davis Masterpiece.

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Year to Remember: More Listener Comments

Friday, June 10, 2011

All this week, we've asked our guests and musicians to give us a single important year in music history -  but our listeners have been weighing in with their own picks too. Yesterday, we shared some of your choices for your Year to Remember and today we've received even more.

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Year to Remember: Listeners Speak

Thursday, June 09, 2011

All this week, we've asked our guests and musicians to give us a single important year in music history -  but our listeners have been weighing in with their own picks too. Today, we share some of your choices for Year to Remember.

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Mad Men and the Sound of ‘66

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Last week, Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner announced a last-minute musical change to the show’s season five premiere. Dusty Springfield’s “The Look of Love” was cut after critics pointed out that the song wasn’t released until late 1967 – more than a year after the episode was set to take place. Today, Rolling Stone editor Anthony DeCurtis tells us what was being heard in mid-1966, from Frank Sinatra’s “Strangers in the Night” to Simon and Garfunkel’s “The Sound of Silence” to the Rolling Stones’ “Paint it, Black.” 

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Year to Remember: 1986

Monday, April 09, 2012

Reagan isn’t president, Top Gun isn’t the biggest movie of the year, and mullets have somehow lost their appeal. But after releasing new albums last week, ‘80s icons Madonna and Lionel Richie have managed to reclaim spots at the top of the Billboard charts. It’s a feat that’s inspired us to look back at the last time the now-aging pop stars had a Top 5 album at the same time – a quarter of a century ago, in 1986. Rolling Stone contributing editor Rob Sheffield joins us to look back at an “underrated” year in music.

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Year to Remember: 1972

Friday, May 11, 2012

Rolling Stone senior editor David Fricke joins us to look back at music of 1972 - a 12-month period that saw the birth of David Bowie's alter ego Ziggy Stardust, crooner Al Green's commercial breakthrough, and the continuing growth of the singer-songwriter generation.

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