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Watch Sharon Van Etten cover Sinéad O’Connor’s “Black Boys On Mopeds” for SiriusXM

Sharon Van Etten | photo by Rachel Barrish for WXPN

Sharon Van Etten has been performing a cover of Sinéad O’Connor’s “Black Boys On Mopeds” on tour this year, and recently she stopped by SiriusXM to record a live acoustic version of the powerful song. “Black Boys On Mopeds,” from O’Connor’s 1989 album I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got, was written in response to the 1983 death of Colin Roach, a 21-year old black man who was shot and killed inside a London police station. Though the death was ruled a suicide, the circumstances of the tragedy spurred protests that still feel painfully relevant in today’s world. Continue reading →

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Sharon Van Etten stuns a sold-out Union Transfer, covers Sinead O’Connor on night two of tour

Sharon Van Etten | photo by Rachel Barrish for WXPN

Sharon Van Etten‘s new album Remind Me Tomorrow is a different direction for the singer-songwriter: futuristic and spacey synths colliding with her one-of-a-kind voice and old-school style. Her stop in Philly at Union Transfer explored all of this. Van Etten’s set on Thursday felt like a new awakening for the artist, who had taken a long break from touring after her previous album, Are We There. The energy from the stage was palpable, and the crowd was electrified by the band’s performance and Van Etten’s gripping presence. With it being only night two of eighteen, there are still kinks to be worked out, but they were far outweighed by the sheer star power Van Etten brings to her live show. Continue reading →

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The Week Ahead: Sharon Van Etten, Bartees Strange, Herbie Hancock, The Winter Doldrums Concert and more

Herbie Hancock | via The Kimmel Center

This week in the XPN listening area, you can catch shows from legends as easily as fresh faces, nationally acclaimed artists as much as local sensations. Add in the usual mix of genres, from singer-songwriter to jazz to rock and pop, and there’s not a lot of reason to stay home. Here are twelve concerts to see in the next seven days in and around Philadelphia.
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Revisiting the road to Tomorrow with Sharon Van Etten

Sharon Van Etten | photo courtesy of the artist

Sharon Van Etten makes me feel like I don’t do anything.

In the five years since her 2014 opus Are We There alone, it would be hard to find something she hasn’t done. In addition to touring behind that album, she performed and collaborated with countless other artists. She started scoring films. She branched out into acting and appeared on some of the buzziest cult television shows of the era. She even started pursuing her degree in Psychology. On top of all of that, she settled into a long-term relationship and became a parent. Oh yeah, and she wrote and recorded her latest masterpiece, the soaring, sobering Remind Me Tomorrow. Just typing all of that out makes me want to go back to bed, but Van Etten sounds as energized and dynamic as ever. While this album’s songs aren’t about these life events and achievements, specifically, they do accurately convey the emotions and perspective shifts that came with them. It’s a meditation on what it’s like to be happy during unhappy times, and how important and challenging it is to stay happy.

Ahead of next week’s performance at Union Transfer, Sharon was gracious enough to have a long chat with me about everything that’s been going on in the years leading up to Tomorrow, the work and influences that went into it, and how she stays grounded and positive through everything going on around us. Continue reading →

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Watch Sharon Van Etten debut “You Shadow” on live Jimmy Kimmel Live

Sharon Van Etten on Jimmy Kimmel Live | Still from youtube video

Consider this your reminder – Sharon Van Etten‘s new album, Remind Me Tomorrow, is out… tomorrow!  Ahead of the release, she had the opportunity to appear on Jimmy Kimmel Live last night, performing the albums third single, “Seventeen”. Afterward, die-hard fans quickly discovered a bonus performance video on the web of “You Shadow”, a previously unreleased song with a laid back beat, gritty guitars, and a church organ driving throughout. Continue reading →

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Sharon Van Etten’s new video for “Seventeen” will destroy you

Sharon Van Etten | photo courtesy of the artist

“You think you know something. You don’t.”

Singer-songwriter Sharon Van Etten is in conversation with her younger self on the latest teaser of her hotly anticipated new record Remind Me Tomorrow. “Seventeen” rides a fervent kick drum pulse and juxtaposes moving piano chords and steady guitar strums with synthesizer squalor that becomes more intense as the song progresses, leaving listners gutted and breathless at the end.

On the one hand, the song and its music video comprise a love letter to New York City, where Van Etten has lived for the past 15 years. It celebrates the New York City that opened up a world of possibilities for a young creative woman from New Jersey, the New York City that shaped her personally and artistically, and the New York City that is gone to the ages. Continue reading →

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Watch Sharon Van Etten’s stunning, cinematic video for “Jupiter 4”

Sharon Van Etten | still from video

“Holy shit!” Sharon van Etten exclaimed on Instagram this morning. “Did I write a happy, almost poppy, love song!?”

Sonically, this track from the singer-songwriter’s highly anticipated Remind Me Tomorrow LP is spacious and spectral, occupying a gripping space somewhere between her pensive ballads and her barreling rockers. Lyrically, “Jupiter 4” is all about devotion, and its video finds Van Etten emoting in a variety of natural surroundings in sweeping, dramatic black and white shots. Continue reading →

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Sharon Van Etten reflects on younger selves in ‘Comeback Kid’ video

Sharon Van Etten | still from “Comeback Kid” official music video.

“Comeback Kid” is the first single from Sharon Van Etten’s new album, Remind Me Tomorrow, out January 18th. The song acknowledges her temporary respite from performing–in that lull she was busy creating music, going to school and becoming a mother. The music video, directed by Jonathan Turner, reveals a tougher side to the indie singer, her eyes smokey and hair deliberately tousled. Projections of Sharon’s younger selves play out on the rippled wall behind her, fuzzy candids and fisheye self-portraits, a traipse into the past.  Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Sharon Van Etten will headline Union Transfer in February

Sharon Van Etten
Sharon Van Etten | photo by Ryan Pfluger | courtesy of the artist

After taking several years off to go back to school, launch an acting career, and start a family, singer-songwriter Sharon Van Etten returns to music with her fifth album, Remind Me Tomorrow, which comes out January 18th on Jagjaguwar Records. The record was announced with an urgent rocker called “Comeback Kid,” a high-energy earworm that very directly addresses her re-emergence. Continue reading →