Download The Key Studio Sessions Vol. 6 (feat. Reef the Lost Cauze, Kingsfoil, Bad Braids + more)

The latest edition of our Key Studio Sessions compilations is out today – now streamable and downloadable from Soundcloud! Check out highlights from fall of 2012 with The Key Studio Sessions Vol. 6, including some hard-hitting hip-hop from Ethel Cee and Reef the Lost Cauze, expressive Americana from The Districts, bright pop-rock from Kingsfoil, dense shoegaze from Nothing and more. Special thanks to guest engineer Chris Williams and production assistants Beth Ann Downey, Fred Knittel, Madeleine Lesperance, and Dan Malloy as well as photographers Laura Jane Brubaker, Kyle Costill, Shamus McGroggan, Marley McNamara, and Julie Miller for sharing their work. Continue reading →


In Case You Missed It: Watch our Philly Music Mag-curated videos with Ethel Cee, Reef the Lost Cauze and Peedi Crakk

Reef the Lost Cauze and Ethel Cee | Photo by John Vettese
This summer and fall we dug into the Philly hip-hop scene with the help of our friends at Philadelphia Music Magazine, who curated three of our Key Studio Sessions videos. We were treated to spirited instudio performances by Ethel Cee and Reef the Lost Cauze, who collaborated with a live band, and Peedi Crakk, who performed with a DJ. In addition, Philly Music Mag’s DJ Afrodjiak conducted insightful interviews with each of the artists. Watch the videos below, and download mp3s of Reef’s session here, and Ethel Cee’s here. Continue reading →


The Week’s Best MP3 Downloads, incl. Secret Mountains, Grizzly Bear and Tamarin

Baltimore band Secret Mountains were the subject of Weathervane Music’s latest Shaking Through episode.  Tasked with writing a complete song in two days, the dreamy folk six-piece came up with the beautifully meaningful “High Horses”.  You can download it for free below, and watch the episode here.

Local emcee Ethel Cee was featured in this week’s Key Studio Session. The deftly talented rapper has a background in slam poetry performance but latched onto hip-hop after experimenting with adding music to her spoken word pieces.  Head here to watch the video of Ethel Cee’s performance and download “End It On This” below.

Witty hip-hop group Ground Up dropped their new mixtape on Tuesday over at  The Philly trio will be playing a record release party at The TLA on September 29th but before then, get yourself a download of the album below.


Brooklyn indie band Grizzly Bear had a smash with 2009’s Veckatimest.  Now they’re back with a new collection of songs featured on the just-released album Shields.  “Yet Again” is one of those tracks that hooks right into your brain, in a good way.  You can get a free download of the track below in exchange for your email.

Tamarin is a local folky band with some real country twang.  They are releasing a new album on October 9th called Shake the Ghost and to get you ready, they’ve posted the song “Seems a Laugh” as a free download on their Soundcloud.  Take a listen below.


The Key Studio Sessions presented by Philly Music Mag: Ethel Cee

Ethel Cee | Photo by John Vettese

In this week’s Key Studio Session, presented in collaboration with Philly Music Mag, we delve into the world of Philly emcee, Ethel Cee. Her latest release is the Seven Thirty EP, recorded with South Philly production guru Dumhi, and for this series, she performed with a PMM-curated house band featuring musicians Elliot “El Smooth” Garland (keys), Charlie “Chaz Patz” Patierno (drums) and Rhodney “Rah M. Sungee” Miller (bass). Check out the video below to see Ethel perform three songs and talk about her background as a performer – from crafting song titles that stand out from the pack, to making music from Fela Kuti samples – and download the three songs, engineered by WXPN’s Chris Williams.

Video by Philly Music Mag –


Watch a new video for Ethel Cee’s “Coke and Yoga” (and check back for her Key Session next month)

Rapper Ethel Cee just released another video from Seven Thirty, her EP collaboration with South Philly production wizard Dumhi. The song is about the whiplash that comes when the party life and the spiritual life collide, and the video is a literal depiction of such, with the rapper in a yoga class flashing back to her night before, a rager with an incredible guestlist. I’m spotting Haj Dumhi, Reef the Lost Cauze and Jonathan Slingliff from Slingluff Gallery among its attendees. Check out the video below, and check back for our Key Session with Ethel Cee (produced in collaboration with the awesome folks at Philadelphia Music Magazine) on Sept. 12. You can also check out our photo gallery from the studio session here.


Download a new song from The Wrecking Crew’s homage to Wu-Tang featuring Ethel Cee, Curly Castro and Has-Lo

The musical adventures of The Wrecking Crew (including some of Philly’s most notable hip-hoppers Zilla Rocca, Curly Castro, Has-Lo and Small Professor) continues with this funky new jam from Wu-Tang Pulp, their homage to Wu-Tang. “Pain Bringer” Ethel Cee adds some serious flavor to the mix with Has-Lo and Curly Castro. Download it below. You can grab some more tracks from the Wu-Tang Pulp project here.


Preview the Key Studio Sessions collaboration with Philadelphia Music Magazine (featuring Ethel Cee, Reef the Lost Cauze, Peedi Crakk)

This weekend at WXPN studios, we recorded a collaborative Key Sessions video with the good folks at local blog Philadelphia Music Magazine. A trio led by versatile local bassist Rodney “Rah M Sungee” Miller – also featuring drummer Charlie “Chaz Patz” Patierno and keyboard player Elliot “El Smooth” Garland – played house band to MCs Ethel Cee and Reef the Lost Cauze. Later, State Property alum Peedi Crakk performed, backed by a DJ. Everyone involved was interviewed by PMM founders Jamica “DJ Afrodjiak” El and Damion Ward, and you can look for the resulting videos later this summer. For now, check out a slideshow of the day above, and check out Ethel Cee’s awesome video for “150” below.


Hear Philly rapper Ethel Cee get fierce to Fela Kuti on “One Fifty” (prod. by Dumhi)

Ethel Cee, between takes at Dumhi HQ

The next project on deck for South Philly hip-hop impresario Dumhi is a collaborative EP with rapper Ethel Cee that producer Haj describes as “heavy and emotional.” But sometimes, musicians have to cut loose and be spontaneous. Last week, Haj took part in a Fela Kuti beat battle – the production equivalent of freestyling, if you will – and when Ethel Cee heard the track he mixed together from samples of the legendary Afrobeat pioneer, she immediately set to composing lyrics. A week later, a hard-hitting single was born; you can download “One Fifty” below.