Jam to Phil Lesh, Gov’t Mule, and Joe Russo’s Almost Dead at Peach Music Festival this July

Phil Lesh | photo via artist’s Facebook

Scranton PA is more than just the fictional home of The Office. It’s also the non-fictional home to the beautiful Montage Mountain, where the Allman Brothers Band-inspired Peach Music Festival has been jamming for seven years now. Today, the festival revealed their lineup which features headliners Phil Lesh and the Terrapin Family Band, Gov’t Mule (playing two sets,) and Joe Russo’s Almost Dead. Continue reading →


Tonight’s Concert Picks: Metric at Sands Bethlehem, Phil Lesh at Tower Theater, The Paper Kites at Johnny Brenda’s

Photo by Justin Broadbent

Canadian pop / alt-rock quartet Metric will be performing at Sands Bethlehem tonight. The band manages to merge smart, socially conscious lyrics and potent vocals with driving beats and heavy guitar hooks. The result is biting and the show promises to be the same. Metric will be performing with Paramore, and you can find tickets and more information hereWatch the video for “Youth Without Youth” below.

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My Morning Download: “47” by Anders Osborne (playing with Phil Lesh and Friends at the Tower Theatre in November)

Photo by Jayne Tansey-Patron
Photo by Jayne Tansey-Patron
Guitarist, roots rocker, singer and songwriter, Anders Osborne is releasing a new album, Peace, on Tuesday, October 8th on Alligator Records. Earlier this year the New Orleans based, Swedish born musician released the Three Free Amigos EP. Osborne will be heading out on tour with Phil Lesh and Friends for a dozen shows, three of which are scheduled at the Tower Theatre on November 5th, 6th, and 11th. Osborne, who turned 47 this past May, has written what on the surface seems like an autobiographical tune in which he questions his ambitions and the quest for material satisfaction. Below a sampling of the lyrics, download “47.”

Everybody keeps telling me to keep doing what you’re doing,
So I keep doing just that
But it don’t mean a thing

A young man’s dream at 17,
Got s— done at 21
at 32, I met you,
I made a little money at 40
I made a little money at 40
I made a little money at 40
But nothing happens at 47

This human condition, I’ve made it my mission,
To following the cash, go with the masses
Promises, promises, promises, promises,
I made to myself

Pre-order Peace here.


Phil Lesh and Friends are playing three nights at the Tower Theater in November

pf-20080621_02-philFounding bassist of The Grateful Dead Phil Lesh announced a fall run of tour dates that brings him to Upper Darby’s Tower Theater for three nights in November. His band on this run of dates features “old friends and new” including his son Grahame Lesh and singer-songwriter Anders Osborne on guitar, lead guitarist Luther Dickinson of the North Mississippi All Stars, fiddler Jason Crosby (of Robert Randolph and the Family Band, among others) and drummer Tony Leone. Tickets for the run of shows go on sale this Friday, September 13th, at 10 a.m. Go here for more information. Below, watch Lesh and friends perform “Life Is A Carnival” at the Wellmont Theater in Montclair, N.J. last November; look out for Crosby’s fiddle solo at the 2:45 mark.


Seven bands from the Philly DIY underground you need to hear right now (2019 edition!)

Pit Hair | photo by Gabe Coffey | courtesy of the artist

Covered in debris from dust-strewn practice spaces, tucked into dank basements where the drum kit competes for space with old rusting washing machines the landlord refuses to repair or throw out, huddled together under bridges or in struggling speak-easys with one speaker sound systems — it’s Philadelphia punk rock, a movement informed not only by the DIY community at large — a sprawling network of zines (they still exist), record labels, show spaces, and resources that wild youth and curmudgeonly old crusties have tapped into for decades — but also by wack shit like the city’s raging stop-and-frisk laws, the constant assault of rapid gentrification that feels inevitable, and a tumultuous, strange push-pull that has existed within the context of the punk, hardcore and activist/art scenes in a city that still feels reverberations from the MOVE bombing. To say that Philly’s punk rock community has a tenuous relationship with the city is an overstatement.

But more and more, people who exist outside of the margins, not just because they wear all-black or have pink mohawks, but because of who they are, are finding the resources to get involved, and the cultural texture of the city is richer for it. We’re a city that has been home to Break Free Fest — a musical event highlighting bands who feature Black and Brown musicians screaming their brains out, an event that happens this Saturday and Sunday at The Rotunda. We’re a city that, before Break Free, was home to Rockers, a recurring event that for more than a decade sought to do the same. Continue reading →


Patti Smith holds court with covers and classics at The Met Philly

Patti Smith | photo by Ben Wong for WXPN |

“It better be alright because that’s what’s happening.”

This is the response Patti Smith offered to a gracious fan after having to restart a song midway through her Monday night performance at Philly’s Metropolitan Opera House. It was delivered in good humor but also succinctly summed up Smith’s performance, and her iconoclastic role in music in general. The indomitable “punk poet laureate” has always embodied a no-frills, no-fucks spirit and sincerity that the genre represents at its best. Over a two-hour, sixteen song set that blended classics, covers, and banter, that spirit of spontaneity filled the venue to render it, and the crowd inside it, electric. Continue reading →


Listen to new Faxed EP from Philly punks Chronic Anxiety

Chronic Anxiety | art by Clint Takeda | via

Chronic Anxiety — what a band name. The tension it evokes is evident in the loud urgency of their songs, but in a way that makes listening more cathartic than anxiety-inducing. The Philly punk trio appeared on our radar a few months ago when they appeared on Bandcamp with debut EP Little Girls — read about it in The Key’s Items Tagged Philadelphia series. And though the group still remains pretty elusive, they’re now back with another EP, called Faxed. Continue reading →


Philly Jazz Guide: Top picks for live music around town in October

Trombone Shorty | Photo by Joe Del Tufo |

Though it doesn’t have the reputation of landmark rock festivals like Woodstock or Monterey Pop, the October Revolution in Jazz was at least as monumental for the free jazz scene. Organized by trumpeter/composer Bill Dixon in 1964, the four-day event was the first of its kind and included pioneering figures in the music like Cecil Taylor, Sun Ra, Steve Lacy and Andrew Hill. Continue reading →