Tweedy: NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert

  • Published: 23 September 2014
  • There's something heartwarming about a family making music together. I'm especially sentimental when I see a father with a son, because my son and I made music in contra dance bands and Irish sessions as he grew up.

    Years ago, while interviewing Jeff Tweedy before a Wilco concert, I asked him if he'd made music with his kids. He told me about going to his son Spencer's preschool class and writing a tune with all the kids; "Monkey Mess" was their final creation.

    Now, all these years later, he and Spencer have put together 20 songs as Tweedy for a new record called Sukierae; the material is strong, personal and bare. Spencer is a great drummer who grew up playing in the basement of a Chicago bar called Lounge Ax (which his mom, Susie Miller, co-owned), and he's got a group of his own called The Blisters.

    The father and son usually perform together with a full-band lineup. But here at the Tiny Desk, we've stripped it down to just the men who bear the Tweedy name — and share the family bond that helps make their music together beautiful.--BOB BOILEN

    Set list:
    "Wait For Love"
    "New Moon"
    "Low Key"
    "You Are Not Alone"

    Producers: Bob Boilen, Denise DeBelius; Editor: Maggie Starbard; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; Videographers: Denise DeBelius, Maggie Starbard; Production Assistant: Nick Michael; photo by Nick Michael/NPR
  • Video Clips Video Clips

Comments • 176

  • Andrea Picchi
    Andrea Picchi  3 weeks back

    Tweedies or Tweedys?

    • vinni granato
      vinni granato  3 months back

      what a shame.absolutely mainstream and obvious lyrics

      • Dan T
        Dan T  3 months back

        Jeff i talked shit about you. But you could have done more to stop the war. Don't say it like your career is over. But saying it like you would walk through an actual battlefield to smell a flower. The last flower on earth.
        Find direction you old fuck.

        • Old Man Zappi
          Old Man Zappi  4 months back

          Great stuff, loved everything about it.

          • Liam Gallagher
            Liam Gallagher  8 months back

            Drumming is really nice here

            • ecirprman
              ecirprman  10 months back

              Metta. :-)

              • Timothy J. Roberts
                Timothy J. Roberts  12 months back

                I like Tweedy's guitar.

                • Evan Maines
                  Evan Maines  11 months back

                  Apparently it’s from the 30’s or something... very fragile and I think that’s why he has switched over to playing Waterloo acoustics. Similar in build and sound.

              • Bond Miller
                Bond Miller  1 years back

                This is so great, you know he's having the time of his life playing with his son.

                • Tweedy Naima50
                  Tweedy Naima50  1 years back

                  I'm Tweedy

                  • The Bible Christian
                    The Bible Christian  1 years back

                    Jeff Tweedy is the greatest artist of our time. He doesn't just do rock or alternative or whatever. It everything. He dabbles in all genres just a little. Alt rock, krautrock, alt country, soul style rock, folk rock, Americana, Americana rock, and others. This man blows my mind away.

                    • Will Vallarino
                      Will Vallarino  1 years back

                      Love this! Can't wait to do the same with my boys.

                      • Samuel Gist
                        Samuel Gist  1 years back

                        The second song is everything I've hoped for and expected from Tweedy, myself having been out of time lately to explore his works. I'm not even done listening to this set yet. I always enjoy hearing him on MPR(Minnesota Public Radio), having been a fan his work since 2001.

                        • MrJBMarston .Brooks Marston

                          Love the set......Spencer can really play....what a joy to play with your dad

                          • Paul Eliot
                            Paul Eliot  1 years back


                            • Jiggly Carollo
                              Jiggly Carollo  1 years back

                              Huh, Jeff Tweedy's son is Spiderman.

                              • MrJBMarston .Brooks Marston

                                That first tune is just beautiful.....

                                • kinky won
                                  kinky won  1 years back

                                  Moments that never come back exept through dreams and memories. Very loverly

                                  • imark t
                                    imark t  1 years back

                                    reminds me of Pedro The Lion

                                    • Debra Poole
                                      Debra Poole  2 years back

                                      Seeing Tweedy & Wilco on October 1. Cannot fucking WAIT.

                                      • Michael Toussaint
                                        Michael Toussaint  2 years back

                                        Let's face it the guy is really good. He is just cool.

                                        • sera tu la Petit
                                          sera tu la Petit  2 years back

                                          la traduction en français serai cool svp

                                          • Sara Gomes
                                            Sara Gomes  2 years back

                                            reminds me of rodriguez.

                                            • Brian Geis
                                              Brian Geis  2 years back

                                              Even Tweedy's kid has the "so lame to play in my dads band" look on his face. Love it, it's a universal truth. Great set regardless.

                                              • NorthWriter
                                                NorthWriter  2 years back

                                                I have been blessed to have been playing music with my dad since I was a teenager. Eventually my younger brother joined us, and we recorded some songs. It's pretty special to have had that experience. Now I'm pushing 40, and we still love sitting down with some guitars whenever we're all in the same room (which isn't that often anymore). And now my own teenage son and daughter are musicians, and sometimes we'll jam together. It's a treat every time. There's much joy to be shared in playing music together.

                                                • kipperfeast
                                                  kipperfeast  2 years back

                                                  Wow! Spencer is his son? What great playing from such a young lad and especially in such a naked and intimate setting such as this!! As a drummer myself, I was surprised to hear such nuances and dynamic details coming from a lad playing on a 3-piece kit covered with towels! Try getting audible action out of that!(Especially using double-stroke rolls). On one of the songs, I was reminded a bit of the drummer on one of the first two Tom Waits albums...

                                                  • Majestic Sanctuary
                                                    Majestic Sanctuary  2 years back

                                                    His son is a chip off the ol' block.

                                                    • Mark Wright
                                                      Mark Wright  2 years back

                                                      Spensor is a songwriters drummer. His little touches are amazing.

                                                      • Matthew Gaffney
                                                        Matthew Gaffney  2 years back

                                                        Perfectly put. He's like a very very calm 60's era Wyatt or Levon! So tasteful, such a focused listener...

                                                    • Debra Poole
                                                      Debra Poole  3 years back

                                                      I'm a latecomer to Mr. Tweedy's music (both solo and with Wilco) and I have become one of his most ardent fans in the past year. *sigh*

                                                      • Mutualist
                                                        Mutualist  3 years back

                                                        Fuck, this makes me want to create music in a two piece ensemble. A simple and minimal expression of music.

                                                        • Mark Wright
                                                          Mark Wright  3 years back

                                                          Its handy if your father is Jeff Tweedy though bit Spencer is a great drummer and talent can't be bought. Two pieces are a great personal ensemble

                                                      • Vidmantas Sakalauskas
                                                        Vidmantas Sakalauskas  3 years back

                                                        Vidmantas Sakalauskas 19:57 (prieš 0 minučių)
                                                        skirta Niujorko ..Sveiki . ...Siunčiu jums ką tiktai šiandieną t.y. 2016 m birželio 13 d. įdainuotą mano sukurtą dainą ''Ačiū Mama '' iš jau išleistos 4-tos muzikinės knygos ''Laikas ''+2 CD . Tekstą parašė poetė Austėja Gendvilaitė . Šioje knygoje jūs rasite ir natas ir tekstus ,kaip ir visose likusiose mano jau išleistose 7 knygose ,kurios jau yra parduodamos visoje Lietuvoje ir ....užsienyje nuo 2012 metų . Išleisiu dar 5 muzikines knygas su 204 kūriniais ir 11 CD ,iki 2018 metų . [Kompozitorius Vidmantas Sakalauskas --youtube --Šiauliai ] . 

                                                        ​ Vidmantas Sakalauskas 19:57 (prieš 0 minučių)
                                                        skirta Niujorko Priedų sritisPeržiūrėti „YouTube“ vaizdo įrašą „Kompozitorius Vidmantas Sakalauskas 004“ Kompozitorius Vidmantas Sakalauskas 004Priedų sritisPeržiūrėti „YouTube“ vaizdo įrašą „Kompozitorius Vidmantas Sakalauskas 004“ Kompozitorius Vidmantas Sakalauskas 004

                                                        • MsAdesio
                                                          MsAdesio  3 years back

                                                          holy shit ! with that talent and handsomeness, Spencer will be breaking hearts left and right

                                                          • Nora Vázquez
                                                            Nora Vázquez  3 years back

                                                            • Jesse Watson
                                                              Jesse Watson  3 years back

                                                              You can get some really nice sounds from just drums and an acoustic guitar and voice. Sounds nice! (Would have used a larger guitar myself, not that you need to, but the man does own several nice dreadnoughts and super jumbos.)

                                                            • paul anderson
                                                              paul anderson  3 years back

                                                              brilliant work mr tweedy wilco

                                                              • Live Nation Clubs and Theaters
                                                                Live Nation Clubs and Theaters  3 years back

                                                                Hey Paul! We think you'll enjoy our never before seen interview with Jeff Tweedy & John Stirratt of Wilco from the early 2000s! Check it out here:

                                                            • Michael Strickand
                                                              Michael Strickand  3 years back

                                                              Really nice, guys. I envy the idea of a father and son performing together. Way to go.

                                                              • Live Nation Clubs and Theaters
                                                                Live Nation Clubs and Theaters  3 years back

                                                                Hey Michael! We think you'll enjoy our never before seen interview with Jeff Tweedy & John Stirratt of Wilco from the early 2000s! Check it out here:

                                                            • ERNIE S.
                                                              ERNIE S.  3 years back

                                                              Proud Papa :)

                                                              • Zdrohce Chordz
                                                                Zdrohce Chordz  3 years back


                                                                • Shroud NZ
                                                                  Shroud NZ  3 years back

                                                                  Can't wait to see J.T + Son down here in NewZealand soon

                                                                  • Shane Haney
                                                                    Shane Haney  3 years back

                                                                    What a great father/son relationship they have!

                                                                    • Oliver Betts
                                                                      Oliver Betts  3 years back

                                                                      Hats off to Spencer. So musical

                                                                      • Shawn Tracy
                                                                        Shawn Tracy  4 years back

                                                                        LOVE this man!

                                                                        • Baek Lee
                                                                          Baek Lee  4 years back

                                                                          You rarely see him play his signature Martin....

                                                                          • Matt Wales
                                                                            Matt Wales  4 years back

                                                                            It's good to see parents putting their kids to work.

                                                                            • American Pancake
                                                                              American Pancake  4 years back

                                                                              So FREAKING AWESOME--!!!

                                                                              • Darunee Senal
                                                                                Darunee Senal  4 years back

                                                                                Could not agree more... Love the Tweedys

                                                                            • Clément Gaudet
                                                                              Clément Gaudet  4 years back

                                                                              Just caught myself singing the missing vocals during the chorus of "Low key", haha.
                                                                              Gotta love the Tweedys ! :)

                                                                              • KamEAleX
                                                                                KamEAleX  4 years back

                                                                                This is so, so true.

                                                                                • paul elliott
                                                                                  paul elliott  4 years back

                                                                                  Brilliant stuff from Jeff and Spencer
                                                                                  Great concerts these and Tweedy knock it out of the park
                                                                                  Excellent album too - check the 'Low Key' video for more Father/Son stuff
                                                                                  Guitar drums work perfectly here

                                                                                  • Paul Sotomayor
                                                                                    Paul Sotomayor  4 years back