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Healing and Connecting Through Music: Inside the Weathervane Music winter concert

J Pope (left) and Songs in The Key of Free will play Weathervane’s winter studio concert | via Facebook

The folks behind Weathervane Music don’t necessarily consider themselves activists. The Philly nonprofit is more of a champion for independent music through its ten-years-running documentary series Shaking Through.

At the same time, the do look to elevate artists working for social causes, artists who see working for a better world as much a part of what they do as making music. Gabe Greenberg, Creative Director of Weathervane, emphasized a growing need to showcase artists who support social justice issues or provided an unheard perspective. That’s something they’re doing with their winter studio concert at Miner Street Recordings this Friday, December 7th.

The show will open with a performance by Songs in the Key of Free, a group that works to challenge mass incarceration and reform the prison system. Headlining is J Pope and the HearNow, the project of Baltimore singer and rapper Jasmine Pope, who makes activis,-driven songs with her jazz/funk ensemble.

Greenberg says this shift was in part prompted by the 2016 election; in its aftermath, he says, there has been a palpable threat to freedom of expression. “When you think back to the 60’s, activist music used to be incredibly prevalent, and mainstream artists were going out there and making bold political statements,” Greenberg says. “With the DIY scene, it became cool to be apathetic and not care. Now we’re seeing more bands saying ‘no, this is important, and affects my day-to-day life.’ The need to be intentional and mindful is growing, we want to feel a sense of connection.” Continue reading →

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Ellen Siberian Tiger talks collaboration and channeling emotion in new Shaking Through session

Ellen Siberian Tiger | still from video

Philly indie rockers Ellen Siberian Tiger are the focus of the latest Shaking Through session from Weathervane Music. The group, helmed by songwriter/vocalist Ellen Tiberio-Shultz and performing as a four-piece for this session, joined the Weathervane folks at Miner Street Recordings to put together a finished rendition of their previously unrecorded song “Everybody Always.” The final product is out now, and includes a polished music video of the song and a documentary-like look behind the scenes into the process of recording. Continue reading →

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Watch Jesse Hale Moore’s “Enter, Light” on latest Shaking Through episode

Jesse Hale Moore recording in Miner Street Studio | photo via weathervanemusic.org

The latest episode in the series Shaking Through released to the world this week. The episode features Philadelphia singer-songwriter Jesse Hale Moore recording his first song since his April 2017 LP, Green End. Shaking Through, the video documentary and recording series brought to us by Weathervane Music and Miner Street Recordings, has previously featured artists such as The Dove & The Wolf, Big Thief, and Waxahatchee, and it celebrated the beginning of its ninth volume with the release of Moore’s track, “Enter, Light.” Continue reading →

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Best buds Thin Lips and Frances Quinlan tackle anxiety in their Shaking Through session

Thin Lips and Frances Quinlan | photo courtesy of Weathervane Music

In the latest installment of Philly’s premiere music doc series, Shaking Through, Brian McTear and the rest of the gang at Weathervane Music welcomed local punks Thin Lips, along with Hop Along’s Frances Quinlan, to record a new track titled, “So Stoned.” Spoiler alert: it’s a pretty flippin’ good episode. Continue reading →

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Steady Hands speaks from the heart in newest Shaking Through feature

 

Steady Hands | photo via Facebook

Steady Hands meets Shaking Through…there’s a fantastic pun in there somewhere. On November 15th, Weathervane Music released the latest installment of their extremely excellent “Shaking Through” documentary series that dives deep into the the makings of a record and the humans behind it. Up this time is Steady Hands, the project of Modern Baseball’s Sean Huber that is rounded out with Andrew Kirnan, George Legatos, William Lindsay, Evan Moorehead, and Richard Straub, all familiar faces from around the Philly scene. It’s Huber’s project, but it’s one he wanted to share with his friends. “From the beginning, I just wanted to be more of a collective than anything. I’ve always wanted the energy of everyone just collaborating, enjoying what they’re doing.”

The episode follows the making of Steady Hands’ track “Magazines” at Miner Street Recordings, where Huber worked as video editor and recorded his first Steady Hands songs when they were just a small side project as a favor from producer Brian McTear. Continue reading →

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The Kominas unpack the paradox of identity and music in recent Shaking Through session

The Kominas | photo via artist’s Facebook page

Philly / Boston punk outfit The Kominas recently stopped by Miner Street Recordings as the focus of Weathervane Music’s latest Shaking Through installment. If you’re new to the series, for an uber quick rundown, it’s a super interesting feature that goes behind the scenes — both in artist background and technical production — as a band works through the process of recording a new song, from it’s personal, creative idea of a beginning, to its end jam of a result.

In this episode, the twelve year old band (though three years old with the current lineup) delved into the topic of identity, and the unfair media fetishism The Kominas faced almost immediately as a band; where they were, and still are, externally branded as a political “Muslim punk band,” even though not all members are Muslim, and they do not sing with religious-minded intentions.

Guitarist Shahjehan Khan questions in the video, “This idea of being a political band.. what does that mean? Your art is gonna be about your life. And if it’s good and honest, you’re gonna talk about your identity. It’s not political, it’s just what it is.” Continue reading →

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Watch Waxahatchee’s new song “No Curse” take shape in their new Shaking Through documentary

Waxahatchee recording their Shaking Through session | photo courtesy of Weathervane Music
Waxahatchee recording their Shaking Through session | photo courtesy of Weathervane Music

As much as I am completely, avidly, and wholeheartedly obsessed with music, I cannot for the life of me fathom how artists can create songs. I am constantly in awe (and also thoroughly envious) of musicians ability to have art in their heads and then go and make it a real, living thing.

Weathervane Music’s Shaking Through video series allows musical plebeians such as I, to experience this amazing process of recording. Their brand new video showcases Katie Crutchfield’s Waxahatchee creating their new anthemic jam of a song, “No Curse.” Being as that the session was the first time the band played the song together, you’re able to see the song build and take shape before your very eyes. Continue reading →

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Tune in for a live-streamed Shaking Through Session with Waxahatchee this weekend

waxahatchee
Waxahatchee | photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com

The folks at Weathervane Music are back it again, this time bringing us a Shaking Through session with Waxahatchee. Katie Crutchfield & co will be in Fishtown’s Miner Street Recording this weekend, January 21st and January 22nd, and the live-stream cameras will be on hand to give us a backstage pass into their recording process.

Continue reading →

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Watch Carroll top off their “blue period” with the tranquil “Private Moon” on the latest Shaking Through

Carroll | Photo by Noah Silvestry for WXPN | silvestography.com
Carroll | Photo by Noah Silvestry for WXPN | silvestography.com

Miner Street Recordings’ music production web series Shaking Through welcomed the Philly-by-way-of-Minneapolis psych-rockers of Carroll to its most recent episode. In a way, it was a welcome home for the group since their 2014 single “Bad Water” was recorded with Miner Street’s Jon Low. Continue reading →

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Hemming’s Candice Martello (and friends!) walk the music industry’s rocky road in the latest Shaking Through

Hemming
Hemming’s Candice Martello and Cayetana’s Augusta Koch with Three Man Cannon’s Matt Schimelfenig in Miner Street Recording | photo by Gabriel Greenberg | courtesy of the artist

Philly’s Hemming has become a force of nature on the Philly show scene over the past year. Whether she’s performing with a band or playing solo, in a quiet living room or a loud bar, frontwoman Candice Martello’s cathartic delivery and deep ruminations have an uncanny ability to make a crowd stop and listen.

But she’s also present on the scene in another way: you’re just as apt to see Martello in the audience, cheering for her friends on stage, as you are on a lineup. There’s a real sense of camaraderie and real emotional connectivity to what Hemming does, and those things converge massively on the opening episode of the new season of Shaking Through. Continue reading →