Listen to our 1967 #TBTXPN Spotify playlist and World Cafe Sgt. Pepper’s special

For the first #TBTXPN Throwback Thursday on June 1st, WXPN celebrated the 50th anniversary of the release of The Beatles’ Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and the golden year of music that was 1967. Listen to our Spotify playlist of 171 songs – 10 hours of music – curated by the hosts of WXPN – Kristen Kurtis, Dan Reed, Helen Leicht, Mike Vasilikos and World Cafe host Talia Schlanger. Continue reading →


April 25 in Music History:

Seeger Sessions

1967 – Just days after the completion of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, The Beatles begin work on their next album by recording the theme to Magical Mystery Tour at Abbey Road studios in London.

Continue reading →


Spotify study reveals Penn students love Magic Man, hate Kendrick Lamar and sleep late

Kendrick Lamar | Photo by John Vettese
Kendrick Lamar is not a favorite of University of Pennsylvania students, according to Spotify  | Photo by John Vettese

Okay, number nerds, this is pretty interesting: Spotify this week released a study on “the most musical universities in America,” ranking schools based on amount of music listened overall and number of subscriptions at their student rate. The University of Pennsylvania ranked as the 34th most musical school in the country, and the school-specific breakdown provides an interesting snapshot of the West Philly ivy league institution’s listening habits. Continue reading →


Listen to The Wallflowers’ Spotify Playlist (WXPN Welcomes them to the Trocadero, Thursday, November 8th)

WXPN Welcomes The Wallflowers to the Trocadero on Thursday, November 8th. They recently released their new album, Glad All Over, and appeared on World Cafe with David Dye. You can listen to that session here. We asked the band to create a playlist of songs and they came back with an excellent list of music from a diverse range of artists including British legends Bert Jansch and Richard Thompson, krautrock legends Can, the Manchester post-punk rock band The Fall, and British post-rockers Bark Psychosis and more. Continue reading →


Stream a Beach Boys Spotify playlist curated by Dave Hartley (The War on Drugs, Nightlands)

The Beach Boys made their mark in the mid-sixties with pop hits like “God Only Knows” and “California Girls” but War on Drugs bass player and Nightlands main man Dave Hartley is here to tell us why the band’s real genius didn’t show itself until later on.  From Dave:

The Beach Boys are much more than the just Pet Sounds and Surf-Car-Girl party songs. Here are twelve strange and beautiful songs that came after.”

In a Spotify playlist he created for his bands’ label Secretly Canadian, Hartley handpicks his favorite Beach Boys tracks from albums including 1967’s Smiley Smile, 1970’s Sunflower, 1971’s Surf’s Up and more. Continue reading →


Take a crack at remixing Bon Iver’s latest record (playing The Mann on Sept. 16)

Still riding high on the heels of his critically-lauded, doubly-eponymous album, Bon Iver this week kicked off a new interactive project in conjunction with popular music streaming service Spotify and social-networking site Indaba Music. Yesterday, the stem files to all ten songs on Bon Iver, Bon Iver were released on the site for fans to download and remix.

Now, you might often see the term “stems” thrown around the music blog world with hardly any explanation, so here’s a crash course for those who aren’t studio geeks: when an album is recorded, it’s typically done in pieces at a time – just the guitar, just the drums, just the vocals. Those pieces are then mixed together, and a “stem” is a WAV audio file containing one of those pieces.

So if you’re game to partake in this contest, you create an Indaba membership and download your stems here, and then get cracking on your remix in the audio program of your choice (GarageBand, etc.). It could be something as simple a giving “Perth” less synthesizer and more drums. It could mean making an a capella version of “Holocyne.” Or it could mean taking “Calgary,” cutting it into bits, and rearranging it over some original deep-vibe tracks of your own.

The sky is really the limit, but the deadline for submitting your remix is Aug. 29. Fan voting begins on the 30th, and top ten vote-getters winners recieve cash prizes. Even if you aren’t a finalist, it’s a great opportunity to market your remixing skill just in time for Bon Iver’s show at the Mann Center for the Performing Arts on Sept. 16. Good luck!