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XPN Fest Recap: Amos Lee and Spoon find common ground in groove

Amos Lee | photo by Wendy McCardle for WXPN

Unexpected match-ups at #XPNFest aren’t exactly uncommon — it’s kind of what we do, bringing together artists and sounds and styles that might not normally be paired together and getting fans of one to consider the other. Mass horizon expansion, if you will.

Last night’s headlining show at BB&T Pavilion was admittedly a puzzler, a little-bit-of-everything mix of The Suffers‘ soul, Chicano Batman‘s psychedelic Latin rock, and a dual headlining set from Austin’s Spoon and Philly’s Amos Lee. The two at the end in particular were a peculiar pair, the former occupying the gritty fringes of aggressive indie rock and the latter a singer-songwriter who takes the stage on stately theaters across the country and around the world.

But they showed that they had more in common than meets the eye — or ear, rather. In a word: groove.
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Spoon, Amos Lee ft. Preservation Hall Jazz Band, The Suffers and Chicano Batman will headline night two of XPoNential Music Festival 2017

spoon
Britt Daniel of Spoon | Firefly | Photo by Joe del Tufo | http://www.deltufophotography.com/

This just in — Austin indie rock favorites Spoon will light up the BB&T Pavilion stage on night two of this year’s XPoNential Music Festival. Co-headlining alongside Britt Daniel and co. are Amos Lee and Friends, featuring Preservation Hall Jazz Band, with The Suffers and Chicano Batman kicking off the show; seated tickets for the concert on July 29th go on sale this Friday, March 10th, at 10 a.m. Continue reading →

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The Key’s Year-End Mania: Amos Lee’s top played songs of 2016 on Spotify

amos lee
Amos Lee | photo by Michelle Montgomery | michellemontgomeryphotography.com

Year-End Mania is the Key’s annual survey of the things below the surface that made 2016 incredible. Today, we bring you Amos Lee’s rundown of songs he played over and over on Spotify.

With this year’s release of Spirit, local favorite Amos Lee grew into his soulful side. Songs like “Running Out of Time” featured gospel-style chorus singers, while “Vaporize” steamed with R&B beats (you can read a track-by-track, first impression review of the record here). We got some insight into the making of Spirit with his World Cafe session in September, but now Lee is pulling the curtain back even further on the album’s inspiration by sharing a playlist of his most-played songs on Spotify this year.

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Amos Lee brings Spirit home

Amos Lee | Photo by Sydney Schaefer for WXPN
Amos Lee | Photo by Sydney Schaefer for WXPN

Considering WXPN (as a community and staff) are some of the biggest Amos Lee fans around, to say we were excited to cover this show is beyond an understatement. Lee set out on his fall tour this past Friday in support of his newest album, Spirit. This stellar show made its way back to Lee’s hometown, where he was welcomed by a roaring crowd packed into the Academy of Music ballroom. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: The Districts at Tellus 360, Amos Lee at Academy of Music, The Skatalites at Underground Arts

The Districts | photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com
The Districts | photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com

Philly favorites The Districts are shipping out to Lancaster, PA for a one-off at Tellus 360. The show is in support of Beyond the Mountains, an organization dedicated to raising money towards educational efforts in Nepal. A minimum donation of $25 will get you to the gig, which also feature music from Ton-Taun and a presentation from Beyond the Mountains. These guys consistently bring down the house, and you get to see them do it as you simultaneously support a great cause. What more could you ask for? Find more information here. Continue reading →

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On first listen, here is what we want you to know about Amos Lee’s new album, Spirit

Cover art of Amos Lee’s Spirit

Philly and XPN fav Amos Lee‘s new album Spirit has officially hit the shelves. It’s in stores now and available for streaming via Apple Music. For some of you, that means you’ve probably already listened to the album in its entirety four times. Or, maybe you have Spotify like I do, and don’t have unlimited access to it just yet. Whichever camp you fall under, we thought you might enjoy a quick track-by-track review of what to expect on Lee’s sixth studio album. So here it goes. Continue reading →

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Watch Bonnie Raitt and Amos Lee perform “Angel From Montgomery”

Bonnie Raitt | Photo by Joe Del Tufo for WXPN | deltufophotography.com
Bonnie Raitt | Photo by Joe Del Tufo for WXPN | deltufophotography.com

This past May, legendary singer-songwriter and guitarist Bonnie Raitt appeared at WXPN’s Non-Commvention. Performing material from her recent album, Dig In Deep, Raitt also performed a few classics from her back catalogue.

At the end of her set, Bonnie invited Philly singer-songwriter Amos Lee out to duet on John Prine’s “Angel From Montgomery,” a song that Raitt originally recorded with Prine on her 1974 album, Streetlights. Not having any time to rehearse, Lee played the part perfectly, and it was a highlight of Raitt’s set. Continue reading →

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Eagle In The Streets: Connor Barwin’s 3rd Annual Make the World Better benefit returns to Union Transfer

Connor Barwin | photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com
Connor Barwin | photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com

No sports jokes in this one, I promise. And even more surprisingly, on Friday night when the 3rd annual Make the World Better benefit show went down at Union Transfer, none there, either. Put on and hosted by “The Street Eagle,” — the Philadelphia Eagles outside linebacker Connor Barwin — the event brought together music nerds and jocks, uniting them in the name of the greater good.

Unlike last year’s spicy, sporty takes from everyone’s favorite sassy Brooklyners Parquet Courts, this year featured very little mention of the love of the game. In fact, unless you had known previously that Connor plays for the team, you might never have learned at the event. And that’s okay. While last year’s event was radical, it seems lessons learned went into action, making the third incarnation of the event the most music-centric one yet, even while featuring fewer bands. Continue reading →