Here at The Key, we spend a lot of time each week digging through every new release from Philadelphia that shows up on Bandcamp. At the end of each week, we present you with the most interesting, most unusual and overall best of the bunch: this is Items Tagged Philadelphia.
Gonna be honest here: I’m 100% still in Roots Picnic recovery mode. Twelve hours, fourteen sets, more guests appearances than I could keep track of. And that’s in addition to being up and out at 8 a.m. for the Roots Rock Run, an annual charity 5K in my neighborhood that benefits Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter’s GrassROOTS Community Foundation nonprofit.
Of course, I can’t talk like that’s any kind of impressive endurance level, as the real MVP of the past 24 hours, aside from The Roots themselves, is their guest Pharrell Williams. He was onstage last night in Philly, rocking with the band for almost two hours, bringing out various collaborators and heroes from his musical past and present — it was like “Pharrell, this is your life” or something — and even inviting a young fan onstage, introduced only as “Reef,” to clap along to über-hit “Happy.” Somewhere in the aftermath, Williams promptly jetted across the Atlantic Ocean to appear onstage this afternoon in Manchester, England (evening, their time) at Ariana Grande’s benefit for the recent bombing victims. Sure, the dude is somewhat responsible for the skeezy “Blurred Lines” (which he did perform last night), but clearly his heart is in a good, positive and compassionate place. Continue reading →