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Podcast: The Olympics Used To Have An Arts Competition; Take A Beatles Quiz; Helen Sung Plays Live

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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Beatles - Abbey Road (Amazon.com) (Amazon)

In this episode: Dr. Bill Guegold, Olympics music historian, talks about the history of the grand musical themes that we Americans associate with the games; the long-extinct Olympic arts competitions that used to award medals to composers; the Russian Police Choir; and more.

Then: All this week, Soundcheck is asking you to pick a side: The Beatles or The Rolling Stones? (Make your case in the comments here, on Twitter at @Soundcheck or leave a voicemail at 866-939-1612.) But no matter your loyalty, everyone can participate in our Beatles chart quiz, devised by writer Chris Molanphy. Given a pair of classic Fab Four songs, pick the one that charted higher in the U.S.

And: Pianist Helen Sung’s story is a tale of two genres: classical and jazz. Growing up in Texas, she studied classical piano – and went to college intending to become a concert pianist. But it was a Harry Connick Jr. concert, of all things, that opened her eyes and her ears to jazz – and her path took a dramatic turn. Helen recently made her major label debut with her new release called Anthem For A New Day, and we hear some of it live.

Guests:

William Guegold and Chris Molanphy

Beatles Quiz: American Hits

To celebrate the anniversary of the Beatles' arrival in America, test your knowledge of the Fab Four's performance on the Billboard charts.

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The Fascinating History of Olympic Music

Did you know that the Olympics used to have an arts competition? Or that iconic intro music we hear on tv is actually two seperate pieces? We talk with a self-proclaimed 'Olympic geek' about the long and storied background on the music of the games.

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Helen Sung: Refined Jazz Piano 'Anthems'

Hear jazz pianist Helen Sung perform works from her latest recording, Anthem For A New Day, in the Soundcheck studio.

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The Family Crest's album, Beneath The Brine, is out Feb. 25.

Check Ahead: The Family Crest, 'Beneath The Brine'

Part rock band, part sprawling collective, The Family Crest plays wildly ambitious orchestral pop songs that jump from genre-to-genre, often in the same song.

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Beck's long-awaited new album, Morning Phase, is out on Feb. 25.

Knee-Jerk Reaction: Soundcheck On Beck's 'Morning Phase'

Beck has not put out a new record since 2008, but now (finally!) after a long wait and a ton of side projects, the iconoclast songwriter and producer is set to release Morning Phase on Feb. 25. Members of the Soundcheck team took the album for a spin and have these first impressions.

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Cian Nugent

Download This: Cian Nugent, 'Grass Above My Head'

Check out solo instrumentals from the Irish guitarist at Union Pool tonight. Download the track 'Grass Above My Head.'

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