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FUV Essentials

There are many variables that determine what makes an artist or band “essential” — longevity, impact, influence, history, discography — and WFUV takes a deeper look with FUV Essentials. On-air and online, we celebrate musicians who have shaped our cultural soundtrack. Let’s love these artists while they’re here, and honor those who have departed too soon.

Bob Dylan

In the three years since FUV first celebrated Bob Dylan as an FUV Essentials, he's won the Nobel Prize in Literature, released another album of American standards and more volumes of the "Bootleg Series," and ahead, he unveils the colossal 14-disc The Rolling Thunder Revue: The 1975 Live Recordings — accompanied by a Martin Scorsese documentary on Netflix too.

Tank and the Bangas: Five Essential New Orleans Songs

In 2019, everything is going Tank and the Bangas' way. The New Orleans band, winners of NPR's Tiny Desk Concert back in 2017,  releases its major label debut, Green Balloon, on May 3 via Verve Forecast. Frontwoman Tank Ball writes about what she loves about her NOLA's unique music in her "Five Essential New Orleans Songs," ahead of her band's appearance at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival on May 4.

Lucy Wainwright Roche: Five Essential Indigo Girls Songs

Lucy Wainwright Roche released her sixth album, Little Beast, in 2018 and she's also been a frequent opener for Indigo Girls' Amy Ray and Emily Saliers over the last handful of years. Roche says that five-song limit of FUV's "Five Essential Indigo Songs" was "tyranny" — so she bent the rules a little and picked six songs she loves, written by her friends and inspirations, Saliers and Ray.