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Just Announced: Glen Hansard brings The Wild Willing to Merriam Theater in May

Glen Hansard
Glen Hansard | Photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com

Remember 2007 when a movie about two shy songwriters tore your heart to shreds on screen? That was Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova in Once, and the good news for you Once-devotees is that Glen Hansard is back with a North American tour this spring. The tour was announced along with a new documentary short, produced by La Blogotheque, about the creation of his new album, The Wild Willing, out April 16 on Anti- Records. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Glen Hansard at The Keswick Theatre, Frances Quinlan at Johnny Brenda’s, Sleigh Bells at Union Transfer and more

Glen Hansard | Photo by Jeremy Zimmerman for WXPN

Whether he’s fronting his Dublin rock band The Frames, acting in the indie film favorite Once or releasing his own stunning solo albums, Glen Hansard never fails to strike an emotional chord. He headlines the Keswick Theatre tonight; tickets and more information on the show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar.
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The Key’s Year End-Mania: Ten videos not to miss on VuHaus

Kamasi Washington | Photo by John Vettese
Kamasi Washington | Photo by John Vettese

Year-End Mania is the Key’s annual survey of the things below the surface that made 2015 incredible. Today, XPN Program director Bruce Warren recaps ten favorite WXPN videos from VuHaus.

We’ve put together a playlist of some of the best performances on VuHaus, a new music video website featuring videos from public radio stations around the country. Alongside XPN, contributors include WFUV in New York, KCRW in Los Angeles, KUTX in Austin, Oregon Public Radio, Mountain Stage, World Cafe and others.

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Meet Sean Bennett and Franco Yugga, the Philly buskers Glen Hansard brought onstage at NonCOMM

Sean Bennett, left, and Franco Yugga, right, with Glen Hansard backstage at NonCOMM | Photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com
Sean Bennett, left, and Franco Yugga, right, with Glen Hansard backstage at NonCOMM | Photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com

Sean Bennett is glad that it’s getting to be summer – it’s a much better time of year to be a street musician. People are outdoors more often, they’re less rushed and more willing to listen, and it opens the door to better money and more opportunities for he and his best friend Franco Yugga.

You may have seen the two classically-trained violinists performing in Suburban Station on your commute to and from work; their playing reverberates beautifully across the cement walls by the 17th Street staircase. It wasn’t too far from there yesterday afternoon that Bennett, 19, and Yugga, 18, were performing their rendition of Mozart’s Symphony No. 25 when renowned Dublin singer-songwriter Glen Hansard happened to be within earshot. Continue reading →

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Recap: Glen Hansard treats fans to new songs (and surprise guests) at NonCOMM

Glen Hansard | Photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com
Glen Hansard | Photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com

Irish singer-songwriter Glen Hansard opened his set of all new material with a song “dedicated to Sean and Frank,” two musicians he met earlier in the day. Later in the set he explained: while exploring the city during some downtime he came across the pair of buskers in front of a cafe at 17th and Walnut. Impressed, Hansard, who got his start busking on the streets of Dublin, invited them to join him here at NonCOMM. Sean and Frank came out on the stage for two songs at the end of the set, accompanying the guitarist on violin. It was a wonderful moment for everyone involved and made Hansard’s already moving compositions even more special. Listen back to the set and check out photos below.

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My Morning Download: “Races” by Glen Hansard from The Burgundy Stain Sessions via World Cafe

Photo by Conor Masterson

The World Cafe with David Dye recently featured performances from the Burgundy Stain Sessions concert series. Keyboardist and songwriter Thomas Bartlett, who performs as Doveman, is the both host and accompanist for the Burgundy Stain Sessions series held at Le Poisson Rouge in New York City. The sessions are intended to be an informal, fun and intimate in-the-round live concert experience where the musicians play backup to each other as well as perform their own material. Some of the musicians featured during these sessions included Glen Hansard, Hannah Cohen, Sam Amidon, Trixie Whitley, and Loudon Wainwright III. You can download a five song sampler here. Below, download Hansard’s “Races.”

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Michael Kiwanuka at The Trocadero, Glen Hansard at Union Transfer, The Sheepdogs at Johnny Brenda’s

Photo by Joe Del Tufo

Last week Barclaycard announced their Album of Year shortlist for the 2012 Mercury Prize.  It surprised no one that London-based singer/songwriter Michael Kiwanuka was one of the names on that list, nominated for his debut full-length Tell Me a Tale.  Though he’s only 25, the BBC Sound of 2012 winner’s music is unequivocally inspired by the soul and folk musicians of the sixties and seventies.  Kiwanuka plays The Trocadero tonight, along with fellow British folk singer Marcus Foster and Australian singer/songwriter Matt Corby.  Doors are at 7:00 for the all ages show, and tickets are $16.50 here.  Below, watch the video for “I’m Getting Ready”.

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