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Little Moon, 2023 Tiny Desk Contest Winner: Tiny Desk Concert


Bob Boilen | May 30, 2023
When 2023's Tiny Desk Contest winner Little Moon arrived at NPR, outward expressions of joy overshadowed the inner bundle of nerves this Springville, Utah band felt. The group's winning song, "wonder eye," unanimously wowed our contest judges Sharon Van Etten, Baby Rose, Sudan Archives and Albina Cabrera. Tiny Desk senior producer Bobby Carter and I, also judges, were in awe hearing singer Emma Hardyman's 4-octave voice warming up behind the Desk. She and her husband, Nathan Hardyman, told NPR's All Things Considered host Ari Shapiro that they began writing "wonder eye" while Nathan's mother was in hospice care, and that he wrote the lyrics soon after she passed. "'wonder eye' incorporates the idea of multiple deaths," Emma shared. "I think it took the physical death to help us realize that death is really happening all the time — be it past versions of ourselves, old held beliefs, old judgments even. And to that extent, we're always grieving as well, which was also eye-opening."

Without monitors or vocal amplification, one of the toughest things for a band to do when playing at my Desk is to get the balance and sound levels right. Emma and Nathan, joined by bandmates Bly Wallentine on bass, Bridget Jackson on harp, Chris Shemwell on drums and Grace Johnson on keys, all pretty much nailed it. The band's set, which includes two unreleased songs (recorded for a new album), displays a range of emotion and creativity with a promising future. The group will be hitting the road as part of the Tiny Desk Contest tour, so if Little Moon is coming to your town, come and hear this band's unique sound.

"wonder eye"
"we fall in our sleep"
"kind, kind home"

Emma Hardyman: vocals, guitar
Nathan Hardyman: guitar, vocals
Bly Wallentine: bass, rainstick, vocals
Bridget Jackson: harp, vocals
Chris Shemwell: drums, percussion, vocals
Grace Johnson: keyboard, rainstick, vocals

Producer: Bob Boilen
Director/Editor: Kara Frame
Audio Engineer: Neil Tevault
Series Producer: Bobby Carter
Videographers: Kara Frame, Maia Stern, Joshua Bryant, Sofia Seidel
Audio Assistant: Hans Copeland
Photographer: Elizabeth Gillis
Tiny Desk Team: Suraya Mohamed, Josh Rogosin, Hazel Cills, Ashley Pointer
VP, Visuals and Music: Keith Jenkins
Senior VP, Programming: Anya Grundmann

#tinydesk #nprmusic #littlemoon #tinydeskcontest

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