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Watch Noname rock a medley of songs from Room 25 on Colbert

Noname on Colbert | via twitter.com/colbertlateshow

The last time Noname was on late-night TV was two years ago, accompanying collaborator Chance The Rapper on Saturday Night Live. But last night the Chicago rapper claimed the entire stage for herself with an appearance on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. Backed by a full band, Noname performed a three-song medley off her flawless new album, Room 25“Blaxploitation,” “Prayer Song,” and “Don’t Forget About Me.” Any jittery nervousness that might have been evident was swept away as she fell into the rhythm of her verses, reinforcing the fact that this woman was born for the spotlight. Continue reading →

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Watch Caroline Rose’s eccentric study of suburban malaise in the “Jeannie Becomes A Mom” video

Caroline Rose
Caroline Rose | still from video

Before she heads out on her fall headlining tour, which includes a stop at Underground Arts next month, everybody’s favorite eccentric rocker Caroline Rose has a new music video to share. Rose released her breakout sophomore album LONER earlier this year, and the new video brings one of its standout singles, “Jeannie Becomes A Mom,” to life. Continue reading →

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Watch Cat Power perform “In Your Face” on KCRW

Cat Power | photo by Michelle Montgomery for WXPN | michellemontgomeryphotography.com

Cat Power, the longtime recording project of songwriter Chan Marshall, recently released Wanderer, her first album in six years. Before heading out on tour in support of the new LP, Marshall stopped by Los Angeles NPR member station KCRW for her first live radio session behind Wanderer. She chose one of the album’s slower tracks, “In Your Face,” and stripped it down even further for a raw and emotive performance. Watch it now via NPR Music. Continue reading →

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Paul Simon performed “Can’t Run But” and “Bridge Over Troubled Water” on SNL with yMusic

Paul Simon
Paul Simon on SNL | still from video

Singer-songwriter Paul Simon performed with New York chamber ensemble yMusic on last night’s Seth Meyers-hosted episode of Saturday Night Live. It was Simon’s 14th appearance on the late-night comedy show; he first appeared as host of the show’s second-ever episode in October of 1975.

He also just released his 14th solo album, In the Blue Light, which features orchestral reworkings of songs from his back-catalog, and for his first performance of the night, he played “Can’t Run But” — originally heard on 1990’s The Rhythm of the Saints, often heard as the theme music to NPR’s Radio Times — with yMusic providing the album’s orchestrations, arranged by The National’s Bryce Dessner. Continue reading →

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Watch Kurt Vile cover Tom Petty’s “Learning To Fly” in a Sirius XMU session

Kurt Vile | photo by Jo McCaughey | courtesy of the artist

Whether you can hear it or not (and it definitely took me a minute), Kurt Vile has always been a huge Tom Petty fan, and takes any opportunity he gets to sing his praises. And sometimes, actually sing his songs. In a new acoustic session recorded for SiriusXMU, Vile puts his spacey drum machine stamp on “Learning to Fly” from Petty’s 1991 album Into the Great Wide Open. Give it a watch below, and catch Kurt Vile at The Met Philly on December 29th; tickets and more information on the show can be found here. Continue reading →

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The Key Studio Sessions: Wallace

Lancaster’s Wallace Gerdy first showed up on the Philadelphia scene as the lead shredder in basement show regulars Mattress Food. Then, back in January of this year, she ventured out on her own with a short set of demos that were heavily informed by her love of classic rock. The instantly likeable “Sunny Monday” (with its undeniable debt to “Sweet Jane” by The Velvet Underground) caught my ear during the December edition of Items Tagged Philadelphia, I checked out the project’s full band debut at Ortlieb’s, and Wallace — as it’s eponymously called — was officially on The Key’s radar. Continue reading →

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Watch the creation of a Charles Bradley mural, listen to a new song from his posthumous album

Charles Bradley and his Extraordinaires | photo by Jeremy Zimmerman for WXPN

Charles Bradley passed away one year ago, but his life is celebrated in the form of Black Velvet, the posthumous album set to release November 9. HIs label Daptone Records has launched a website featuring murals by Chicago-based artist Joe Miller, who will paint his larger-than-life icons of Bradley in cities around the world. The first mural went up in Chicago, and you can watch a time-lapse video below set to the grooving, passionate “Luv Jones.” Continue reading →

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The Week Ahead: Swearin’, Death Cab For Cutie, Gorillaz, Florence and the Machine, and more

Florence and the Machine | photo by Vincent Haycock | courtesy of the artist

This week, our concert agenda includes indie rock institutions as well as left-of-center art popsters, arena shows to DIY shows, rock and roll and folk and Afrobeat and everything in between. Here are 19 concerts you can see in and around Philadelphia over the next seven days. Continue reading →

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Watch Ellen Siberian Tiger play “Grinding My Teeth” in new Random Tea Session

Ellen Siberian Tiger | photo by Emma Silverstone for WXPN

Ellen Siberian Tiger can usually be found around town performing as a trio, but the latest Random Tea Session sees songwriter Ellen Tiberio-Shultz showcasing a quieter side to their musical project. Filmed in Northern Liberties’ plant-filled and natural light-soaked Random Tea Room, Ellen Siberian Tiger’s just-released Random Tea Session is the 60th installment in the series, which began in 2012. (Check out the archive of Random Tea Sessions here.) Continue reading →

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Unwind with Boogieman Dela’s new video “Bring Me Down”

Boogieman Dela | photo by Dylan Eddinger for WXPN | dylaneddingerphoto.squarespace.com

Philly’s Boogieman Dela caught our ear this year with a suave sound straddling the worlds of clubby hip-hop and melodic R&B, and that balance comes to the forefront in his new music video.

Set to “Bring Me Down,” the Anderson .Paak styled closing track to Boogie’s spring release Broken Watch 02: Future Currents, the video gives us a depiction of how his sound is custom designed to unwind, as we follow a woman returning home from a stressful day and indulging in some self-care time (with the aid of a certain mood-enhancing substance).    Continue reading →