The Week So Far: 12 must-read stories on The Key (incl. Jake & The Good Men, American Babies, WKDU)


American Babies | Photo by Megan Kelly |
American Babies | Photo by Megan Kelly |

American Babies show off their recent Knives and Teeth in a Key Studio Session this week [link]

New shows scheduled for Robert Ellis, Sam Roberts Band, Lorde and Brett Dennen were announced

XPN’s Gotta Hear Song of the Week from Phantogram called “Fall in Love” [link]

Strand of Oaks signs to Dead Oceans and will release a new LP in 2014 [link]

Relive the week’s best shows with recaps of Winterwaltz, San Fermin,  Hot Water Music, Work Drugs and Anthony Green [link]

The Rivals cover Birdie Busch in the newest Cover Club video [link]

The Key premiered Slow Your Roll and “The End” by local rockers Jake & The Good Men [link]

Folkadelphia premieres Volume 1 collection of live session tracks on Spin [link]

Catch Helen Leicht’s annual Home for the Holidays special during Robert Drake’s 24-hour Christmas Eve Marathon The Night Before [link]

WKDU released a compilation of in-studio tracks from Algernon Cadwallader, Psychic Teens and more as a free download [link]

Ben Smith shares two holiday originals while Abi Reimold reworks a classic carol [link and link]

12 Days of Local Christmas continues with Tin Bird Choir, John Beacher and Amber DeLaurentis [link]



Are you the next great host of WXPN’s Sleepy Hollow?

75342-835-550Do you have what it takes to be the next great host of Sleepy Hollow? WXPN is looking for a host and programmer for its weekend specialty show. For over thirty years, Sleepy Hollow has been a fixture on XPN’s weekend morning airwaves with an eclectic mood setting mix of jazz, folk, instrumental, acoustic, and contemporary music.

“It isn’t always soft or slow,” says Chuck Elliott who has hosted the show since its beginning. “It’s more about creating a mood, a sense, an atmosphere. Sleepy Hollow is the way you want your weekend mornings to sound.”

Featuring a wide variety of artists – from Miles Davis, Tom Waits and Joni Mitchell to Chet Baker, Norah Jones and Nick Drake – Sleepy Hollow is a place where mood and music combine to create a warm and relaxing weekend morning experience.

If you think you have what it takes, you need to submit what a sample two hour Sleepy Hollow playlist mix (on paper), and a no more than 10 minute aircheck to: Bruce Warren, WXPN, 3025 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104. Or you can send an e-mail with your sample playlist and your aircheck to

For your aircheck: if you email us an mp3, there is a 10 MB capacity. Alternatively, you can put your aircheck on soundcloud, Dropbox, Hightail or WeTransfer – be sure to send us the link. This is a paid position and the deadline is January 15th, 2014. Sorry, but no phone calls will be accepted.


Members of The Lawsuits, TJ Kong and Commonwealth Choir take on “Wild Night” by Van Morrison (playing MilkBoy on NYE)

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To get everyone ready for their New Years Eve show at MilkBoy in a couple of weeks, members of The Lawsuits, TJ Kong and the Atomic Bomb and Commonwealth Choir collaborated on a rocking cover of Van Morrison’s “Wild Night” that includes a knock-out harmonica solo by Kong’s Dan Bruskewicz.  Check out the video below and pick up tickets to the XPN Welcomes show here.


La Dispute’s Will Yip-produced new Rooms of the House will be released in March (playing Union Transfer 4/11)

La Dispute recently announced their next full length album, Rooms of the House due out March 18th via Better Living. Sure to be another heavy dose of experimental hardcore story telling, we should be expecting something that will “blow people’s minds away,” at least according to album producer Will Yip who posted a picture with La Dispute to Instagram the other day. A

After the countless hit albums Will Yip has produced at Studio 4 over the last year (The Wonder Years’ The Greatest Generation, Balance and Composure’s The Things We Think We’re Missing and Anthony Green’s Young Legs to name a few), it speaks volumes when he says “(this album is) unlike anything I’ve ever done.” Get caught up on La Dispute’s signature style of experimental hardcore with their 2011 release Wildlife below.

Keep an eye out on their website for tracks and pre order info. Also make sure to catch them on their North American tour, where they play Union Transfer on April 11th with Pianos Become the Teeth and Mansions. Tickets are available here.


Just Announced: Tinariwen will perform at the Prince Music Theater on 3/21

Tinariwen | photo by Marie Planeille
Tinariwen | photo by Marie Planeille

Malian musical group Tinariwen have announced a tour to support their upcoming LP Emmaar, set for release on February 11th.  The world tour will stop at the Prince Music Theater on March 21st, with tickets going on sale today at Noon.  More information will be available here.  Watch Tinariwen perform their song “Tassili” live below and revisit their 2011 World Cafe appearance here.


Download “Vermont” by The Districts, watch their Shaking Through session

Photo via

Central Pa. rockers The Districts have a lot going on for them these days. New record deal with Fat Possum, tour with White Denim and now an opening spot for Dr. Dog at The Electric Factory and a rocking Shaking Through session. (Shaking through is doing pretty well themselves, having already wowed us this year with tracks from Lushlife and Hop Along.)

“Vermont” is the bright and poppy new single The Districts recorded for Shaking Through; it’s got a swagger to it that we haven’t heard from these guys yet, and their making-of-the-song documentary explores how the band sees itself as an inseparable unit of four friends making rock and roll. Download the song and watch the video below.


Don’t Call Them Revival: The GTVs bring Sh’Bang! to Johnny Brenda’s on Saturday

Photo by Brian Hunt |
Photo by Brian Hunt |

Sam Steinig, lead singer and organist for Mount Airy garage soul band the GTVs, was riding the train to the city, casually talking to Scott Galper, someone he’d known from his neighborhood’s babysitting co-op. He’d mentioned his band at the time, Mondo Topless, was on Get Hip Records. And much to their surprise Galper, drummer of The Heretics, was on Get Hip as well.

“What are the odds,” Steinig says with wide eyes, “That the guy that lives two blocks away from me, is in the same babysitting co-op – I mean, I babysat his daughter! – played in a band on the same label just before my last band got on it.”

After Mondo Topless parted ways in 2011, Steinig told Galper he wanted to form a new band. Fast forward two years, and The GTV’s about to release their first LP, Sh’Bang!, on Italy’s Teen Sound Records. But how they got connected to the label, which specializes in garage, psych, mod and powerpop bands, is even more surprising.

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