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Stateside: Michigan music that got us through 2020


Today on Stateside, a look at the year in music. We review the latest records from Michigan musicians—released despite all the live event cancellations brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic—with music aficionado John Sinkevics, the editor and publisher of Local Spins. Plus, we revisit recent releases from Flint musician Tunde Olaniran and Albion-turned-Nashville duo The War and Treaty.

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Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below.

Local Spins: The top five albums from a year in music like no other

Stateside’s conversation with John Sinkevics

  • John Sinkevics is editor and publisher of the online magazine Local Spins.
  • He joined Stateside to talk about some of Michigan’s top music releases in a uniquely difficult year for musicians, many of whom managed to find new ways to connect with fans despite canceled gigs and tours.
  • “It has been the most unusual and sometimes devastating year ever, but I have been very amazed at how Michigan musicians have pulled together and released an awful lot of new music in 2020, despite the fact that they’ve been unable to perform, they’ve been unable to tour behind these new releases, they’ve been unable to hold their usual album release shows, but nevertheless, they’ve been able to get their music out to their fans,” Sinkevics said.

Flint musician Tunde Olaniran on the creative process in a moment of social upheaval and change

Stateside’s conversation with Tunde Olaniran

  • Tunde Olaniran is a singer-songwriter based in Flint.
  • They spoke with Stateside about the messages behind their new single, “WDWHI,” and making innovative new work during a complicated year.
  • “We are so disconnected from each other, in some ways, that we don’t really see how much we have to lose collectively,” Olaniran said. “And I think having a temporary feeling of safety because you happen to be in a zip code where there isn’t environmental pollution specifically attacking you, that doesn’t mean that in 10 years or less, you won’t be in that same situation.”
  • This conversation originally aired on November 13.

The War and Treaty’s new album provides sonic comfort for a chaotic year

Stateside’s conversation with Michael Trotter Jr. and Tanya Blount Trotter

  • Michael Trotter Jr. and Tanya Blount Trotter are the married couple behind The War and Treaty, based in Nashville—and before that, Albion, Michigan.
  • They spoke with Stateside about their latest album, Hearts Town, which was released this fall.
  • “As we continued to try to process what we were going through as a couple, living in this country, one of the things that we decided to do was just be completely honest with how we felt,” Michael said. “And that’s just what you have, and what you’re hearing is where the road to honesty has led us.”
  • This conversation originally aired on November 20.
Stateside is produced daily by a dedicated group of producers and production assistants. Listen daily, on-air, at 3 and 8 p.m., or subscribe to the daily podcast wherever you like to listen.
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