Watch Kristin Hersh’s new “Wonderland” video before she plays Boot & Saddle this spring

Kristin Hersh
Kristin Hersh | photo by Peter Mellekas | courtesy of the artist

Legendary performer Kristin Hersh began her career as the frontwoman of Throwing Muses, the influential band she formed when she was only 14 years old. Now, decades later, Hersh is still at it as a solo artist — and she’s currently preparing for a massive tour behind a massive album that includes a Philly stop. Continue reading →


Tonight’s Concert Picks: Kristin Hersh at Tin Angel, Jesse Hale Moore at Johnny Brenda’s, Square Peg Round Hole at Crane Arts and more

Kristin Hersh | via

Alternative era favorite Kristin Hersh takes over the Tin Angel in support of her massive 2016 record Wyatt at the Coyote Place, a double LP bringing her left-of-center songwriting into tight focus for an engrossing set. The gig is 21+ and more information can be found on the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →


Just Announced: Kristin Hersh will play Tin Angel this December

Kristin Hersh | via

Acclaimed author, singer, songwriter and indie rocker Kristin Hersh is going on a fall tour in support of her latest album / book, Wyatt at the Coyote Palace. [UPDATE: Listen to a song from it here.] The month-long run brings the frontwoman of Throwing Muses and 50 Ft. Wave to the Tin Angel in Philadelphia on Thursday, December 15th. Tickets for the 21+ show are $20 and go on sale Friday, September 23rd at 10 a.m. via the venue’s website. Continue reading →


Moms Rock! The Key’s salute to our six favorite rock n’ roll mothers

Patti Smith, photographed by Annie Liebovitz in 1996 with her son Jackson and daughter Jesse

The awesome job of being a mother is impressive enough. But how about being a mother, and a rock n’ roll icon? An astonishing number of artists have managed the balancing act of family life and public life over the years, perhaps not getting the credit they’re due. Which hopefully will change sooner rather than later. An indie documentary called Rock N Roll Mamas celebrating the trials and triumphs of musical motherhood is making it’s way around the film festival circuit this year. And while it hasn’t yet screened locally, we’re doing our part on The Key on this Mother’s Day by saluting a half-dozen of our favorite rock n’ roll moms. It goes without saying that we’ve missed countless artists with offspring, and please let us know who they are in the comments.

Click here to start the Moms Rock! countdown. 


Tonight’s Concert Picks: Kristin Hersh, Family Band, Dangerous Ponies, Literature

For more than 25 years, Kristin Hersh has been a steady source of stunning music, from intensely expressive art-rock with Throwing Muses, the band she founded with her cousin Tanya Donnely in 1985, to haunting songs as a solo singer-songwriter and straight-ahead thrash in 50 Foot Wave. If you’re not familiar, this great Q&A in last Wednesday’s Philadelphia Weekly oughta get you up to speed – it touches on Hersh as a songwriter, guitar wizard and author (her 2010 memoir, Rat Girl, is a fantastic read and highly recommended). Tonight’s show at World Cafe Live is billed as a solo appearance, which for Hersh can mean just about anything – songs from her mid-90s catalog, throwbacks to the early days of the Muses, new pieces she’s workshopping and posting to YouTube for her fans to weigh in on. You can watch a video of one of those below, a number called “Chipping Teeth” that’s tense on the verses, catchy on the refrain and somewhat mysterious on the outro. Kristin Hersh and James Maddock play World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut Street, tonight at 7 p.m. Tickets to the all ages show are $16 and available at the door.

Newly relocated to Philadelphia, Family Band – singer-guitarists Kim Krans and Jonny Ollsin, plus a sea of collaborators – is celebrating the release of their excellent new record Grace and Lies (No Quarter) with an appearance at the First Unitarian Chapel tonight. Labelmate Jennifer Castle opens, and the resonant room ought to serve both artists well, as they make use of dreamy tones and emotive sonic space. Check out an interview with Family Band in today’s Philadelphia Inquirer, see a video they shot for Free People below and check back to The Key later today for a download from their Folkadelphia session this past weekend. Family Band and Jennifer Castle perform at the First Unitarian Church Chapel, 2125 Chestnut St., tonight at 8:30 p.m. Tickets to the all-ages show are $10.

Family Band “Lace,” An Exclusive Acoustic Performance from FreePeople on Vimeo.

Carnivalesque indie pop ensemble Dangerous Ponies hit up Johnny Brenda’s tonight for their last show until autumn. With a slew of new songs in their setlist, the band plans to take the rest of the summer off for recording and other summer-y things. We can’t wait to hear the new record this results in. Meanwhile, listen to their song “Bumbershoot” below. Dangerous Ponies perform with Green Paper and Ghost Light at Johnny Brenda’s, 1201 N. Frankford Ave, tonight at 8 p.m. Tickets to the 21+ show are $10.

And finally, tonight is the final night of Herb Shellenberger’s month curating the Tuesday Tune-Out series at PhilaMOCA. Joining him are the band Literature, who recently relocated to Philadelphia from Austin, and filmmaker Shawn Kornhauser, who will screen a series of shorts. Find out more information at Shellenberger’s guest VJ post from earlier this month. Tuesday Tune-Out happens at PhilaMOCA, 531 N. 12th St., tonight at 7:30 p.m. Admission to the all-ages show is $5.