Joe Mabel/Wikipedia

One of rock music's most loved, feared and prolific scribes, the 72-year-old Christgau says he knew early on that he liked criticism better than journalism: "I didn't want to get into people's faces."

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Tricia Williams/Courtesy of Tricia Williams

Diane Downs teaches music to the Louisville Leopard Percussionists in Kentucky. She says she hopes the kids feel like rock stars now that a video of their Led Zeppelin medley went viral on YouTube.

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Courtesy of the artist

This month's selections include a youngster from Montreal, a veteran from Chicago, warehouse techno from Paris, a visionary from London, and footwork from Michael Jackson's hometown of Gary, Indiana.

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What happens when Mexican folk music meets Cajun Zydeco? NPR's Rachel Martin talks to Felix Contreras and Jasmine Garsd of NPR Music's Alt.Latino about some musical mash-ups.

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Let the Classical Countdown begin.

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