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New Mix: Turning The Tables Takes Over All Songs Considered

Clockwise from upper left: Lauryn Hill, Joni Mitchell (<em>Blue </em>album cover), PJ Harvey (<em>Rid of Me</em> album cover), Nina Simone, Ofra Haza (<em>Fifty Gates of Wisdom </em>album cover), Aretha Franklin.
Courtesy of the artists
Clockwise from upper left: Lauryn Hill, Joni Mitchell (Blue album cover), PJ Harvey (Rid of Me album cover), Nina Simone, Ofra Haza (Fifty Gates of Wisdom album cover), Aretha Franklin.

Turning the Tables was intended as "a correction of the historical record and hopefully the start of a new conversation" around women's place in the canon of modern music. This week, five journalists take over All Songs Considered in order to continue that dialogue.

NPR Music's Ann Powers, Suraya Mohamed and Anastasia Tsioulcas, NPR One's Jenny Gathright, and Minnesota Public Radio's Andrea Swensson unpack some of the top songs on our 150 Greatest Albums list and their experiences with the music on it.

We kick off with "Carey" from Joni Mitchell's Blue, in which dreams, love, and intimacy breathe easy. Next, Lauryn Hill's candid social commentary on "Doo Wop (That Thing)," Nina Simone's fearless look at the future on "Tomorrow Is My Turn," and Aretha Franklin's sensual wisdom on "Dr. Feelgood (Love Is A Serious Business)."

Also on the show: Some mother-daughter memories, Missy Elliott's new vocabulary on "Izzy Izzy Ahh," The B-52s' spunky confidence (which helped inspire the askew ponytail of a teenaged Ann Powers), empowering rhymes from a young Queen Latifah, Ofra Haza winning space for complex, marginalized identities and PJ Harvey's "Man-Size."

"Can you hear can you hear me now?"

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Ann Powers is NPR Music's critic and correspondent. She writes for NPR's music news blog, The Record, and she can be heard on NPR's newsmagazines and music programs.
Suraya Mohamed is a three-time Peabody Award-winning producer, sound designer and editor. She currently serves as the project manager for Jazz Night In Americaand isa contributing producer on the Alt.Latinopodcast.She also produces NPR's holiday specials package, including Tinsel Tales, Hanukkah Lights, Toast Of The Nation, Pink Martini's Joy To The World: A Holiday Spectacular and most recently Hamilton: A Story Of US.You'll also find her work on the Tiny Desk series as either a producer or engineer.
Anastasia Tsioulcas is a reporter on NPR's Arts desk. She is intensely interested in the arts at the intersection of culture, politics, economics and identity, and primarily reports on music. Recently, she has extensively covered gender issues and #MeToo in the music industry, including backstage tumult and alleged secret deals in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against megastar singer Plácido Domingo; gender inequity issues at the Grammy Awards and the myriad accusations of sexual misconduct against singer R. Kelly.