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All Songs +1: Mark Ronson On Making Something Old New Again

Mark Ronson at NPR's New York office.
Cameron Robert
/
NPR
Mark Ronson at NPR's New York office.

On this week's +1 Podcast, we talk with producer, DJ and musician Mark Ronson about the allure of vintage sounds and why he chose to build his career around making the old sound new again.

The roots of Mark Ronson's love for classic music run deep. This British-born musician spent time in New York City as a kid in the '80s and '90s, becoming an in-demand hip-hop club DJ by his mid-20s. He parlayed his musical education, and an encyclopedic knowledge of soul, R&B and jazz records, into production work for singers like Nikki Costa, reggae dancehall superstar Sean Paul, and, in 2005, Amy Winehouse for her breakthrough album Back To Black.

But Ronson's love of classic sounds isn't about hijacking nostalgia, a point he also made during a 2014 TED talk entitled "How Sampling Transformed Music." As he tells All Songs Considered host Bob Boilen and NPR Music's Piotr Orlov, "We are all children of what came before us. You're taking the things you love and recreating them for now."

Hear the full discussion with the link above, and read highlights from the interview and hear the featured songs below.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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In 1988, a determined Bob Boilen started showing up on NPR's doorstep every day, looking for a way to contribute his skills in music and broadcasting to the network. His persistence paid off, and within a few weeks he was hired, on a temporary basis, to work for All Things Considered. Less than a year later, Boilen was directing the show and continued to do so for the next 18 years.