playlist

Talks for aspiring rockstars

Get ready to rock out with these awesome performances that have lit up the TED stage.

  1. 3:15
    David Byrne, Ethel + Thomas Dolby "(Nothing But) Flowers" with string quartet

    David Byrne sings the Talking Heads' 1988 hit, "(Nothing But) Flowers." He's accompanied by Thomas Dolby and string quartet Ethel, who made up the TED2010 house band.

  2. 6:09
    Amanda Palmer, Jherek Bischoff, Usman Riaz "Space Oddity"

    Singer Amanda Palmer pays tribute to the inimitable David Bowie with a cover of "Space Oddity." She's joined onstage by Jherek Bischoff, TED Fellow Usman Riaz and, no, your eyes are not deceiving you, none other than former Vice President Al Gore.

  3. 8:43
    Silk Road Ensemble + Rhiannon Giddens "St. James Infirmary Blues"

    Singer Rhiannon Giddens joins international music collective Silk Road Ensemble to perform "St. James Infirmary Blues," spiking the American folk song that Louis Armstrong popularized in the 1920s with Romani influence and mischievous energy.

  4. 17:21
    They Might Be Giants Wake up! It's They Might Be Giants!

    In a very, very early-morning set, They Might Be Giants rock TED2007, playing "Older," "Bee of the Bird of the Moth," "Asbury Park," "Fingertips," and "The Alphabet of Nations." Plus they take phone calls from the dead.

  5. 11:31
    Kaki King A musical escape into a world of light and color

    A genre unto herself, Kaki King fuses the ancient tradition of working with one's hands with digital technology, projection-mapping imagery onto her guitar in her groundbreaking multimedia work "The Neck Is a Bridge to the Body." Using her guitar's neck like a keyboard, she plays an intricate melody as she takes the audience on a musical journey of light and sound. She calls it "guitar as paintbrush."

  6. 23:15
    Sting How I started writing songs again

    Sting's early life was dominated by a shipyard—and he dreamed of nothing more than escaping the industrial drudgery. But after a nasty bout of writer's block that stretched on for years, Sting found himself channeling the stories of the shipyard workers he knew in his youth for song material. In a lyrical, confessional talk, Sting treats us to songs from his upcoming musical, and to an encore of "Message in a Bottle."