On the Dial | NPR Tiny Desk Contest
NPR has been hosting Tiny Desk concerts at their office for quite some time. It has become an iconic place to perform, like a mini daytime version of The Late Night Show. Playing a Tiny Desk show means you've made it, or that you're well on your way to finding a broader audience. I always love watching artists perform a Tiny Desk concert because they have to adapt to a cramped, "unplugged" environment. Some performances are brooding and soulful, while others seem to be super casual and fun.
NPR started the Tiny Desk Contest where lesser-known artists can submit a video of themselves playing at their own "tiny desk" for a chance to perform at the official Tiny Desk. The contest has been running for a few years (I think) during the month of January. NPR selects a winner (with help from voters) to perform, but also posts videos of top entries for viewers to check out. Props to NPR and the Tiny Desk series for inspiring more people to do their thing.
Run The Jewels recently recorded a session that's worth checking out. It's rad.