City Hall Presents begins its new season next Wednesday, May 29 with Philly based Brazilian band Alo Brasil in the City Hall Courtyard at 5:30PM. City Hall Presents is a series of free performances that showcases the diversity and richness of the Philadelphia performing arts community. The events are free and take place every Wednesday at 5:30 in the City Hall Courtyard. WXPN has curated several of events this Summer including the opening event with Alo Brasil, followed by Cheers Elephant on June 5, and Andrew Lipke with the Azreal Quartet on July 10. There will also be a special Make Music Philly edition of City Hall Presents on Friday, June 21 featuring Norwegian Arms and the Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia. WXPN’s Dan Reed will be broadcasting live from the City Hall Courtyard next Wednesday starting at 4PM for the kick off of the series with Alo Brasil.
Other highlights of the season include: The Philadelphia School of Circus Arts on June 19, Illstyle & Peace on June 12, Dice Raw & Company on August 7, and the series closes with a special performance from Kurt Vile. Go here for more information and the complete schedule.
The label will also be releasing a 10th Anniversary compilations of previously released and unreleased material from bands that have recorded for the label. The CD will be distributed at the show and will be made available for sale following the concert. Track listing below:
MDR 10th Anniversary Compilation
1. Hoots & Hellmouth- You & All of Us (from the Holy Open Secret)
2. Matt Duke- Tidal Waves (from Winter Child)
3. Andrew Lipke & The Prospects- Get It Over With (from Motherpearl & Dynamite)
4. Kuf Knotz- Fame Us (from Boombox Generation)
5. The Redwalls – Modern Diet (from The Redwalls)
6. Motion City Soundtrack- Severance (from Making Moves)
7. A Great Big Pile of Leaves- Writing Utensils (from Making Moves)
8. Goldrush- Settle Down (from Making Moves)
9. The Skies Revolt- For Your Health (from Making Moves)
10. The Company We Keep- Right/Wrong (from Making Moves)
11. The Swimmers – Hundred Hearts (from People Are Soft)
12. Toy Soldiers – Throw Me Down (from Whisper Down the Lane)
13. Trisha O’Keefe- Never Enough (from Star Burns Brightest)
14. Jules Shear- Used To It (from Dreams Don’t Count)
Bonus Tracks – New Tracks – Previously Unreleased by MAD Dragon Artists
15. Hoots & Hellmouth- Off to Sea (previously unreleased)
16. Kuf Knotz- Runnin’ (previously unreleased)
17. Matt Duke- Dead Meat (previously unreleased)
18. Andrew Lipke- The Old Man and the Sea (previously unreleased)
19. Andrew Gray- Take It Easy (previously unreleased)
20. Sean Hoots- Boy of Leaf (previously unreleased)
The Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts gets underway this Thursday, March 28th and will run through April 27th. With homebase returning to The Kimmel Center and a new theme of time travel this year, the month-long event will use performances, lectures and exihibitions to explore past moments in history including the discovery of America, the lunar landing and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Below, check out a few musical highlights that you won’t want to miss, including a selection of free concerts happening in the Kimmel Center’s “Time Travel Plaza” (where you will also find a spiraling time machine).
Last Call at the Downbeat (4/5-4/13, Red Room at the Society Hill Playhouse): Learn about Philadelphia’s jazz scene in the forties with this staged retrospective of trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie. Watch a short video about the play from show producers Jazz Bridge below.
Prima! Rufus! Judy! (4/21, Verizon Hall): Rufus Wainwright reprises Judy Garland’s return to the stage with selections from her 1961 Carnegie Hall performance. The evening will begin with excerpts from Wainwright’s own opera Prima Donna. Watch Wainwright perform “Zing! Went the Strings of My Heart” below.
The Key kicks off its month of curating Tuesday Tune-Out at PhilaMOCA with a special solo performance by local multi-instrumentalist Eric Slick. Best known as the drummer for Dr. Dog and Norwegian Arms, Slick will be improvising a set to his new short film Primal Essence, filmed specifically for this event. Opening up the night will be short sets by Jonathan Pfeffer (Capillary Action) and Michael Johnson (Ape School). Admission is a suggested $5 donation at the door; more information can be found here. Below, watch Slick show off his drumming skills in a Madoff Productions promo video.
Andrew Lipke and Gillian Grassie | Photo by Chris Sikich
As a precursor to the holiday weekend (and a sly tip-of-the-hat to the apocalypse buzz), Philly singer-songwriter Andrew Lipke – whose 2011 LP The Plague was a cycle of songs set in the endtimes – played The Tin Angel on Friday, December 21. He was joined by singer-songwriter-harpist Gillian Grassie. Each artist played a set, then the two dueted on a medley of seasonal selections, including “Last Christmas” and “Feliz Navidad.” Check out photos of the performance in the gallery above.