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Ingrid Michaelson and friends pull out all the stops for the last night of tour

Ingrid Michaelson | Photo by Cameron Pollack | cameronpollack.500px.com
Ingrid Michaelson | Photo by Cameron Pollack | cameronpollack.500px.com

To say that Ingrid Michaelson gets better every time I see her is in no way an understatement. Over the past year, this is the fifth time I’ve caught her live; you think I would have seen everything, but you would have thought wrong. She throws in new (though equally beloved) songs, always makes sure to love her band in the most creative ways possible, and with this week’s Mann Center appearance being the last show of her Summer Night Out tour, antics were sure to occur. Occur they did. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Pick: Swirlies at Johnny Brenda’s

 Swirlies | Photo by Abi Reimold | AbiReimoldPhoto.com
Swirlies | Photo by Abi Reimold | AbiReimoldPhoto.com

Iconic Boston dream-pop outfit Swirlies return to Johnny Brenda’s tonight for a headlining gig. They’ve been running on and off for 25 years and have released seven LPs and an array of EPs and 7″ singles in that timespan. Joining them are like-minded locals Suburban Living and Spirit of the Beehive, carrying their sound forward for a new generation. Tickets and more information on the show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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The Key Studio Sessions: Little Strike

Born in the Middle East, schooled in Miami, inspired in East Asia and settled in Philadelphia, Tamar Dart is nothing if not well-traveled. You can hear that worldliness reflected in her electronic pop project Little Strike. After a nomadic year spent exploring and producing video work in China, Nepal and Thailand, Dart began channeling her creativity into music. The resulting Forever Always Leaving EP not only has a title that could be a mission statement of the universal wanderer, it sounds like Dart pulled rhythms and melodies from different corners of the world and fused them into something altogether new. Soweto guitar stylings, bhangra rhythms, a dubstep sense of bass versus beats. Those references may be entirely different from what Dart is going for, mind you – it’s totally my read on a very nuanced and exciting blend. Continue reading →

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Listen back to Michaela Majoun’s final Morning Show broadcast on WXPN

Michaela Majoun | Photo by John Vettese
Michaela Majoun | Photo by John Vettese

Michaela Majoun’s final four hours on the WXPN airwaves were bittersweet: there was laughter, there were tears, there were surprise guests and a lot of emotion. Stationed on the upstairs stage at World Cafe Live, Majoun received on-air wishes from longtime XPN volunteers, from musicians, colleagues and friends. The Hooters phoned in from Germany; Lucinda Williams contributed a pre-recorded message. Christine Havrilla and Jonatha Brooke performed live.

And throughout the show, World Cafe host David Dye, Kids’ Corner host Kathy O’Connell, midday host Helen Leicht and morning show co-anchor Bob Bumbera all shared their memories with Michaela, as well as station General Manager Roger LaMay. Listen back to Majoun’s farewell broadcast below, and look at a gallery of photos from the event at World Cafe Live. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Ingrid Michaelson at The Mann Center, Bilal at World Cafe Live, Kansas Bible Company at MilkBoy

Ingrid Michaelson | Photo by Cameron Pollack
Ingrid Michaelson | Photo by Cameron Pollack

UPDATE: Due to inclement weather, tonight’s Ingrid Michaelson show will be moved from The Mann’s skyline stage to the amphitheater. Seating for the show will be general admission.

Pop / rock fave Ingrid Michaelson released her sixth album, Lights Out, just about a year ago, and tonight she brings the latest leg of tour in support of it to The Mann Center for her biggest Philly headlining show to date. The album is full of catchy jams, from “Girls Chase Boys” and “Afterlife” to “Time Machine.” Joining her on the bill tonight is perennial piano-led power trio, Jukebox The Ghost. Tickets and information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Travel down Memory Lane with Michaela Majoun

Francis Dunnery and Michaela | Photo by Walt Hug | hugpix.photoshelter.com
Francis Dunnery and Michaela | Photo by Walt Hug | hugpix.photoshelter.com

This morning, longtime XPN host Michaela Majoun takes the mic for her final stint on the morning show. Last month, she announced that she was leaving the airwaves after 26 years. Today, thanks to local photographer Walt Hug (an XPN volunteer), we bring you a gallery of vintage Michaela photos from the early 90s. Check them out after the jump, and leave your wishes for Michaela in the comments. Continue reading →

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Michaelapalooza: Sending off XPN Morning Show host Michaela Majoun at World Cafe Live

Michaelapalooza | Photo by Rocco Peditto | roccopeditto.com
Michaelapalooza | Photo by Rocco Peditto | roccopeditto.com

It’s the end of an amazing era; WXPN Morning Show host Michaela Majoun will host her final shift on Tuesday, June 30th. Michaela started at WXPN on March 1, 1989. Last night at World Cafe Live, her time on the air and contributions to the Philly music, arts and culture scene were recognized during Michaelapalooza, a two and a half hour outpouring of love for Michaela. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Brian Wilson at the Mann Center, Sondre Lerche at Boot and Saddle

Brian Wilson | Photo by Cameron Pollack | cameronpollack.500px.com
Brian Wilson | Photo by Cameron Pollack | cameronpollack.500px.com

Legendary Beach Boys mastermind Brian Wilson performs tonight at the Mann Center for the Performing Arts. With a 2014 album called No Pier Pressure and a recent biopic called Love & Mercy, the 73-year-old Wilson hit the road with a stellar backing band to perform new songs as well as classics from all across his career. His set at NonCOMM back in May was an incredible trip down memory lane and it was only a half-hour long Free at Noon; expect tonight’s show at the Mann to be much bigger and filled with feeling. Rodriguez opens the show; get tickets and more information at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Jamaaladeen Tacuma at World Cafe Live, Mike Gordon at Union Transfer, Worriers at Boot and Saddle and more

Jamaaladeen Tacuma | Photo via facebook.com/JamaaladeenTacuma
Jamaaladeen Tacuma | Photo via facebook.com/JamaaladeenTacuma

Prolific Philadelphia bassist Jamaaladeen Tacuma makes an appearance at World Cafe Live tonight, sharing the stage with Saxofour. He got his start almost 40 years ago in the Prime Time ensemble with jazz great Ornette Coleman, and released a string of boundary-pushing solo albums in the 80s and 90s that abstractly dabbled in a variety of styles, from abstract free jazz to funk. In the late aughts he teamed up with guitarist Vernon Reid of Living Colour and drummer G. Calvin Weston in the trio Free Form Funky Freqs. Tickets and more information on tonight’s show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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The best 25 tweets we’ve seen about the #AwesomeXPN 80s weekend (so far)

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Well, day one of DJ Robert Drake’s Awesome #1 Hits of the 80s Weekend was a total blast. The music was great (and horrendous), the #AwesomeXPN hashtag was poppin and people from around the region (and the country) were weighing in via social media on the best and worst of what we were collectively listening to. Here’s some of the best Twitter action we’ve seen so far. Continue reading →