Sasha Dobson, Norah Jones and Cat Popper are Puss N Boots; hear them live at NonCOMM

Photo credit Richard Ballard
Photo credit Richard Ballard

After playing together live since 2008, singer-songwriters Sasha Dobson, Norah Jones and Catherine Popper have recorded an album under the name Puss N Boots, No Fools, No Fun, out July 15th on Blue Note Records. The album features a handful of original songs and covers of songs by Neil Young (“Down By The River”), Wilco (“Jesus, Etc.”), The Band (“Twilight”), Jeb Loy Nichols (“GTO”), Tom Paxton, Rodney Crowell and Roger Miller.

While Norah Jones is the most recognizable name of the trio, Sasha Dobson and Cat Popper each have released solo records. Dobson, originally from Santa Cruz, is based in New York. She’s toured with Norah Jones and released her debut album in 2006. Popper was a member of Ryan Adams & the Cardinals, toured and recorded with Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, recorded with Joseph Arthur and Mike Doughty, and most recently has worked with Jack White.

Puss N Boots are making an appearance at WXPN’s Non-Commvention in May, and play the TLA on July 18th. Below, listen to solo material from Sasha Dobson and watch a live performance of Puss n Boots covering “Down By The River.”

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XPN’s Gotta Hear Song of The Week: Billie Joe + Norah, “Long Time Gone”

billiejoeandnorah If someone would have told us that Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day would team up with Norah Jones for an album, we would shook our heads in disbelief. In the truth is sometimes stranger than fiction department, Billie Joe and Norah have indeed have teamed up and made a collection of songs, Foreverly, a track-by-track cover of Songs Our Daddy Taught Us, an album of traditional Americana songs recorded by by The Everly Brothers in 1958.

In this interview in Stereogum, Jones and Armstrong recount the back story:

JONES: Well, we met 10 years ago at the Grammys, but other than that we didn’t really know each other that well. Then I got a call…


JONES: You tell him, actually, I don’t really know how it started.

ARMSTONG: It all started with Stevie Wonder. [laughter] We sang together with Stevie Wonder and his band and a whole bunch of people, that’s how Norah and I first met. Then … well, I got into the Everly Brothers’ record a couple years ago and I thought it was just beautiful. I was listening to it every morning for a while off and on. I thought it would be cool to remake the record because I thought it was sort of an obscure thing and more people should know about it, but I really wanted to do it with a woman singing because I thought it would take on a different meaning — maybe broaden the meaning a little bit — as compared to hearing the songs being sung by the two brothers. And so my wife said, “Why don’t you get Norah Jones to do it?” and I was like, “Well, I kinda know her.” Well, I mean, we had Stevie Wonder in common. And so I called her and she said yes. So it was kinda like a … well, I keep saying it was kinda like a blind date.

JONES: It was, yeah. It was kinda like jumping into something. You know, we’ve both done a lot of different things in our careers but jumping into making a whole record with somebody is definitely the bigger commitment. I think we agreed to go into the studio for a few days just to try it out, remember? And…

ARMSTONG: Yeah, yeah.

JONES: And we ended up pretty much doing the whole record in about five days. It was really fun. And then we went back a few months later to revisit it and do a few extra songs over again.

Reprise Records will release Foreverly on November 25th. Below, listen to “Long Time Gone.”


Tonight’s Concert Pick: WXPN Welcomes Norah Jones to the Mann Center

Ten years ago Norah Jones stepped into the light and became one of the the world’s most popular and critically respected singer/songwriters. Winner of eight grammy awards for her album Come Away with Me, she has since released four more albums, including her latest Little Broken Hearts, that was produced by the prolific and talented Danger Mouse. Jones blends together jazz, blues, rock, and pop into delicate, sensual songs that embody her versatile and creative songwriting skills. After the release of her album in May, she played a Free at Noon at WXPN’s annual Non-Comm. You can listen to her performance here. Tonight, we welcome her back to Philadelphia with a performance at the Mann Center with special guest Sasha DobsonTickets are $29.50-59.50, the show starts at 7:30 PM. Below, watch the official video for “Little Pills” off the new album.


Win a pair of tickets to see Norah Jones tomorrow night at the Mann Center

Photo by Frank W. Ockenfels 3

WXPN Welcomes Norah Jones to the Mann Center tomorrow night and we’ve got a pair of tickets to giveaway. For a chance to win, all you have to do is leave a comment below by 6 p.m. today. We’ll select a winner at random and notify you via email; once you’ve confirmed that you and your guests will be attending the show, your names will be added to the venue’s guest list. (It’s very important that you leave a valid email address when posting your comment; we promise not to sell your contact info or sign you up for anything—we just want to be able to get in touch with you if you win.)


WXPN broadcasting Non-Commvention shows with Grace Potter, War On Drugs, Willie Nelson, Rufus Wainwright, Brandi Carlile, Polica, Norah Jones and more

Next Wednesday, May 16th through Saturday, May 17th WXPN’s annual music conference, the Non-Commvention, rolls in to World Cafe Live and WXPN. This is the 12th year for the industry conference started by WXPN’s Dan Reed when he worked at WFPK in Louisville, Kentucky. Hundreds of music industry personnel will be in town from various radio stations across the country alongside industry publicists, labels representatives, digital media folks, managers, and listeners and members of WXPN. The lineup for this year’s Non-Comm includes dozens of bands who will be performing at World Cafe Live Wednesday through Friday night, and a listener appreciation Free At Noon on Saturday at Penn Park. WXPN will be broadcasting and webcasting the following sets live:

Wednesday, May 16
8:00 PM – The Key Studio Sessions Live with Graham Alexander, Find Vienna
10:00 – Grace Potter & the Nocturnals

Thursday, May 17 Free At Noon
Noon – Joseph Arthur
12:30 – Citizen Cope

The NPR Music Stage
8:30-9 – Father John Misty
9:35-10:05 – Beth Orton
10:45-11:25 – The War On Drugs
12:05-12:45 – Polica

Friday, May 18 Free At Noon with Brandi Carlile, Norah Jones, Willie Nelson

The NPR Music Stage
8:30-9 – Diego Garcia
9:35-10 – Nada Surf
10:40-11:10 – Good Old War
11:50-12:30 – J.C. Brooks & the Uptown Sound

Saturday, May 19 – Listener Appreciation Free At Noon from Penn Park:
12-12:20 – Dex Romweber Duo
12:25-1:05 – Rufus Wainwright
1:15-1:45 – Sons of Fathers
1:55-2:25 – Elle King
2:30-3 – Nick Waterhouse


Listen to Norah Jones’ new album, Little Broken Hearts via NPR Music (playing the Mann in June)

Photo by Frank Ockenfels

Norah Jones releases her new album Little Broken Hearts on May 1st. The album was produced by Danger Mouse (aka Brian Burton). You can listen to the new album in its entirety here via NPR Music. WXPN Welcomes Norah Jones to the Mann on Thursday, June 28th at the Mann Center. Go here for tickets and more information about the show.