City Paper is not for tourists
When you love something as much as Bob Boilen loves music, you want to know what made your heroes fall in love with it too. The multi-hyphenated NPR Music renegade did just that, thanks in part to his decades-long relationship with underground and mainstream musicians alike. Boilen’s first book, Your Song Changed My Life, brings together legends like Smokey Robinson and comers like James Blake to unpack their most significant music memories. The various accounts throughout the book relate to Boilen’s own nostalgia on listening to a record or experiencing an incredible band for the first time. He makes a point in real life to bring those bands and musicians in front of fans. Boilen created the NPR Tiny Desk concerts, which gave T-Pain the opportunity to gain a new fan demographic and gives aspiring artists like Tiny Desk Contest winner Fantastic Negrito a chance to be seen. Boilen’s energy for the artists he loves is apparent by the number of shows (reportedly in the double digits) he tries to attend each week. Boilen comes to Your Song Changed My Life as a fan bringing the artists he loves to anyone willing to listen or read. Bob Boilen speaks at 7:30 p.m. at Sixth & I Historic Synagogue, 600 I St. NW. $35–$50. (202) 408-3100. sixthandi.org.