Frannie Kelley

Frannie Kelley is an Editor for NPR Music.

In this position, Kelley is responsible for editing, producing and reporting NPR Music's coverage of hip-hop, R&B and the ways the music industry affects the music we hear, on the radio and online. She is co-editor of NPR's music news blog, The Record, and co-host of NPR's rap stream Microphone Check, with Ali Shaheed Muhammad.

Since joining NPR in September of 2007, Kelley has worked on a variety of projects including running a series on hip-hop in 1993 and overseeing a project on women musicians. She also ran another series on the end of the decade in music and web-produced the Arts Desk's series on vocalists, called 50 Great Voices. Most recently, her piece on Why You Should Listen to Odd Future was selected to be a part of the Best Music Writing 2012 Anthology.

Prior to joining NPR, Kelley worked in book publishing at Grove/Atlantic in a variety of positions from 2004 to 2007. She has a B.A. in Music Criticism from New York University.

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Microphone Check
3:00 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Joell Ortiz: 'I Refuse To Compromise Me'

Joell Ortiz at a DJ Booth cypher in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, in September.
Polina Yamshchikov for NPR

Originally published on Thu September 18, 2014 6:09 pm

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Microphone Check
8:40 am
Wed September 3, 2014

Souls Of Mischief: 'It's Like Catching Lightning In A Bottle'

Souls of Mischief are, from left to right, A-Plus, Tajai, Opio and Phesto.
Courtesy of Audible Treats

Originally published on Wed September 3, 2014 8:58 am

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Microphone Check
11:57 am
Tue August 19, 2014

The Underachievers: 'We're Still Young'

AK (left) and Issa of The Underachievers onstage at SXSW in 2013.
Sean Mathis Getty Images for SXSW)

Originally published on Tue August 19, 2014 3:52 pm

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First Listen
11:02 pm
Sun August 3, 2014

First Listen: The Underachievers, 'Cellar Door: Terminus Ut Exordium'

The Underachievers' (Issa Gold is on the left, AK on the right) new album, Cellar Door: Terminus Ut Exordium, comes out Aug. 12.
KCBLA Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon August 4, 2014 11:34 am

"I ain't just rhyming," Issa Gold, one half of The Underachievers, says in "Chrysalis." "Keep up." He's rapping, which is much more difficult. Rapping requires him and his partner AK to choose a flow, or melody, for their lyrics; something they can use to parry the beat or run it down or surf. The duo puts the pedal to the metal here more often than not, exercising a slightly archaic style of MCing: deft, speedy, highbrow, tough to perform at the end of a set. Colloquially, rappity-raps.

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Microphone Check
4:43 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Cormega: 'I Just Want To Be A Soldier For My Culture'

Cormega.
Vshootz Courtesy of Jerry Graham Publicity

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 11:39 am

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Microphone Check
7:07 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

YG: 'I Gave Y'All What I Seen'

YG.
Courtesy of the Cashmere Agency

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 11:40 am

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Microphone Check
2:02 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Pete Rock: 'Real Could Be Another Word For Original'

Pete Rock.
Courtesy of the artist

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Microphone Check
2:34 pm
Fri June 20, 2014

Ab-Soul: 'It's A Lot'

Ab-Soul.
Courtesy of Top Dawg Entertainment

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 11:42 am

Ab-Soul, the most philosophical member of the by now vaunted Top Dawg Entertainment, met Microphone Check hosts Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Frannie Kelley in Los Angeles two weeks before the release of his latest album, called These Days ... After only one listen to the album, the three of them had a conversation about Ab's high expectations of his audience and what he's trying to make for them.

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Music
7:52 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Rhythm Section: Spending A Week Trying To Catch The Beat

Roberto A Sanchez Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 24, 2014 3:06 pm

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Music
4:49 pm
Mon June 16, 2014

Sound Off: Where The Military's Rhythm Came From

U.S. Army soldiers take part in a morning run at Camp New York, Kuwait, in 2002.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 24, 2014 3:13 pm

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