Tonight’s Concert Picks: XPN welcomes Charles Bradley to Union Transfer, Morning River Band at MilkBoy, XPN welcomes Mary Chapin Carpenter to the Keswick Theatre, MAD Dragon Anniversary Concert at The Trocadero

charles bradley

XPN welcomes Charles Bradley to Union Transfer tonight.  The “Screaming Eagle of Soul” entertained the crowd during a recent Free at Noon performance with his exuberant showmanship and knock-out funk / R&B songs.  Following up his 2011 full-length debut, the 64-year-old crooner released Victim of Love earlier this year.  Tickets and information for tonight’s show with Paul & the Tall Trees can be found here.  Watch the former James Brown impersonator perform “Why Is It So Hard?” live on the Public Radio Rocks stage at SXSW below.

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Photo Recap: Friday at Philadelphia Folk Fest with Mason Porter, Pokey La Farge and more

Day two at the 51st annual Philadelphia Folk Festival brought an eclectic assortment of styles, including the mandolin-led local combo Mason Porter; Dante Bucci, a virtuoso of the hang drum; new singer-songwriter Zach Stock; Philly-area favorite Griz; buzzing old-timey combo Pokey La Farge and the South City Three; veteran country-folk singer Mary Chapin Carpenter; and the raging eclecticism of the Voice of the Wetland Allstars, who bounced from blues to zydeco to boogie and rock like it was their job. Which it pretty much was. Check out a gallery above.


Stream Glen Hansard’s new album on NPR, playing Free at Noon this Friday 6/15

Glen Hansard‘s very first solo album, Rhythm and Repose, out on June 19th, is a excellent collection of soulful and quiet melodies from the former lead singer of The Frames and member of The Swell Season with Marketa Irglova. Go here to stream the whole album on NPR. Also, this Friday, June 15th, he is set to play a members-only Free at Noon triple-header along with Mary Chapin Carpenter and Michael Kiwanuka.

Stephen Thompson from NPR says about the album:

A gentle, breezy bummer, Rhythm and Repose (out June 19) is Hansard’s quietest record yet; to put it mildly, it spends more time in repose than it spends enslaved by the rhythm. Other than a few showy climaxes in its midsection (“High Hope” and “Bird of Sorrow,” to be exact), Rhythm and Repose remains content mostly to see the lightly, with much of its instrumentation employed for the purpose of subtle shading. Those seeking vein-bulging thunder will have to plunge back into Hansard’s rich catalog, or wait to see him command yet another live stage. In the meantime, he still sings of the same things — unrequited longing, mistakes repeated, the enduring pursuit of grace and joy — but they’re channeled here through a mature mind in a mellow mood.

Glen Hansard is playing Union Transfer on September 20th, you can purchase tickets here.


Philadelphia Folk Festival announces lineup including Lucinda Williams, John Hiatt, Wanda Jackson, Steve Earle and more

The lineup for the 51st annual Philadelphia Folk Festival, August 17th through August 19th at Old Pool Farm in Upper Salford Township, near Schwenksville, PA.was announced today. Highlights include Lucinda Williams, John Hiatt, Steve Earle and The Dukes, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Wanda Jackson, and Little Feat. Other performers include Strand Of Oaks, City & Colour, The Secret Sisters, The Holmes Brothers, Arborea, Chris Bathgate and more. Go here for tickets and more information about the weekend and the lineup. WXPN’s Gene Shay will once again host the festival.