World Cafe

Weeknights 7-9PM

The Church On World Cafe

13 hours ago

The Australian band The Church, best known in the U.S. for its 1988 hit "Under The Milky Way," has a new album (titled Further/Deeper) and a new guitarist, with Ian Haug replacing founding member Marty Willson-Piper. In this episode of World Cafe, singer, bassist and songwriter Steve Kilby presides over a set of new and old songs.

World Cafe Next: BKO Quintet

Mar 30, 2015

This week's World Cafe: Next artist, BKO Quintet, is from the North African nation of Mali. Its album Bamako Today modernizes traditional Malian tunes and originals.

The band calls its music "Trad Actual Malian Sound." But, as you'll hear, it's also got a contemporary feel. In this segment, you can hear and download a couple of songs, including one in which BKO Quintet is joined by vocalist Piers Faccini singing in English.

Houndmouth On World Cafe

Mar 30, 2015

The rootsy Louisville rock band Houndmouth just released its second album, Little Neon Limelight. Like 2013's From The Hills Below The City, it pairs smart songwriting with huge sing-along choruses that prove hard to resist.

At times, Houndmouth's interplay recalls the perfectly ramshackle sound of The Band. In this session, its members perform a live set in front of an adoring crowd at World Cafe Live.

Brandi Carlile has a deserved reputation for a dynamic voice that she has really learned to work over the years. But it's always in service to the song. Case in point: this version of the new song "The Eye." It's a beautiful, subdued World Cafe performance with The Twins, Tim and Phil Hanseroth.

Brandi Carlile On World Cafe

Mar 19, 2015

Courtney Barnett On World Cafe

Mar 18, 2015

When Courtney Barnett combined her previously released Australian EPs into A Sea of Split Peas in 2013 and put them out in the U.S., we fell in love. She's an amazing writer, with wordplay that manages to capture the stream of consciousness of the everyday without becoming overly clever.

JD McPherson On World Cafe

Mar 17, 2015

To hear JD McPherson say it, he heard Little Richard and there was no turning back. That pioneering hero and the music of Buddy Holly form the basis of the sound of the records McPherson has gone on to make. His song "North Side Gal" caught a lot of attention for his first album, which was made in a bit of a vacuum with nobody having many expectations.

Meet The Bright Light Social Hour, an Austin, Texas band that's just released its second album, Space Is Still the Place. The album is a thoughtful examination of what they call the "Future South," informed by a three-year stint of touring following the 2010 release of their self-titled debut.

Asleep At The Wheel On World Cafe

Mar 16, 2015

Asleep at the Wheel has been together for 45 years. They're the best-known and hardest-working western swing band around. Western swing is a genre of music that developed in Texas and Oklahoma in the 1930's combining country songs with jazz players and arrangements. It was primarily dance music and its king was Bob Wills.

Vintage Cafe: Steve Winwood

Mar 13, 2015

Today's Vintage Cafe looks back to 2003, around the time Steve Winwood made a return to rock with the album About Time. He'd had a string of massive, synth-driven pop hits in the '80s ("Higher Love," et al), but clearly felt more comfortable revisiting his roots in bands like Traffic, Blind Faith and the Spencer Davis Group.

Latin Roots: Jovem Guarda

Mar 12, 2015

A revolutionary Brazilian music and arts movement in 1960s Brazil, Tropicalia gave the world the initial offerings of superstars Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, Os Mutantes and others. Today on Latin Roots, Ernesto Lechner discusses another Brazilian movement from the mid-'60s: Jovem Guarda. While Tropicalia drew on Brazilian influences, the artists of Jovem Guarda were more directly influenced by The Beatles and music from abroad.

Hear Lechner's Jovem Guarda Spotify playlist on this page.

JJ Grey & Mofro On World Cafe

Mar 12, 2015

JJ Grey lives in Northern Florida on what used to be his family's pecan farm — a perfect place for a band like Mofro to practice in solitude. It's in the Northern Florida/Georgia sweet spot for soul singers, another way it's ideal for Grey.

New Madrid On World Cafe

Mar 11, 2015

The Athens, Ga., indie-rock band New Madrid has released two albums, including last year's Sunswimmer, since forming in 2012. The group members acquired a space far enough outside town that they could live together and work on their songs in relative privacy. This allows them to get inspired by Athens' music scene and run home to jam and explore new ideas in the middle of the night.

On this episode of World Cafe, the band performs a few of its songs and discusses its name and history.

Kishi Bashi On World Cafe

Mar 10, 2015

Kishi Bashi, a.k.a. multi-instrumentalist K Ishibashi, creates an otherworldly musical experience. On this episode of World Cafe, a string quartet joins Ishibashi to translate arrangements he often plays solo, looping his parts into complex arrangements.

World Cafe Next: Feufollet

Mar 9, 2015

The Lafayette, La., band Feufollet is this week's World Cafe: Next artist. The title of its new album, Two Universes, contains multiple references: the French and English language and culture of Southwest Louisiana, the band's two songwriters (Chris Stafford and Kelli Jones-Savoy), and Feufollet's willingness to straddle the worlds of pop and traditional Cajun music. Hear and download two of its songs on this page.

Steve Earle And The Dukes On World Cafe

Mar 9, 2015

Steve Earle is back on World Cafe, and he has the blues. His new album — titled Terraplane, named for a Robert Johnson song — draws from the genre both musically and lyrically.

Earle is going through a divorce, his seventh, after an eight-year marriage to singer Allison Moorer. But even with that backdrop, these blues songs aren't downers. As Earle says here, Terraplane couldn't have happened without his current cast of backing players in The Dukes, who take it to the crossroads in this session.

Joan Shelley On World Cafe

Mar 5, 2015

Joan Shelley's music takes time to work its magic. Last year, the Louisville folk-pop singer released Electric Ursa, a patient record whose languid beauty builds and unfolds over time. Here, she performs a few of its songs for World Cafe.

Copyright 2015 WXPN-FM. To see more, visit http://www.xpn.org/.

PHOX On World Cafe

Mar 4, 2015

PHOX's members grew up together — attending high school in Baraboo, Wisconsin — but it took some time out in the world before they decided to form a band in the nearby college town of Madison.

Together, they built PHOX's sound around the irresistible, smoky-shy voice of Monica Martin. PHOX released its charming self-titled debut last year, and today World Cafe catches up with the group on stage at World Cafe Live in Philadelphia.

Sinkane On World Cafe

Mar 3, 2015

There's something entrancing about the electro-funk of Sinkane. The Brooklyn band is led by Ahmed Gallab, who spent time in Sudan as a child before moving around the U.S.

Sinkane subtly incorporates East African sounds, complete with a loping repetition of lyrics and musical phrases. Last year, the band released its third album, Mean Love, and it's the most concise and poppy Sinkane record yet.

Today's World Cafe: Next artist is Nora Jane Struthers And The Party Line, which just released a new album called Wake. It's Struthers' third record in a career that finds her transitioning from bluegrass roots to a sound that encompasses pop and country. Hear and download two of Struthers' songs on this page.

The scoring of TV shows is not all done in a big studio with giant monitors and orchestras. For example, the music in Orange Is The New Black gets made in a tiny, cramped garage behind a home in Altadena. There, Gwendolyn Sanford, Scott Doherty and Brandon Jay toil for long hours, collaborating with the producers in pursuit of the right sound to complement what's on the screen.

In this segment, they're joined by Ben Vaughn, whose twangy surf guitar proved to be the right sound for a show about aliens living on earth: Third Rock From The Sun.

Rhiannon Giddens On World Cafe

Mar 2, 2015

World Cafe's guest today is Rhiannon Giddens — formerly of Carolina Chocolate Drops, whose album Genuine Negro Jig won a Grammy in 2010. That record provided an introduction to the way she makes a song her own. (In that case, it was a dynamite cover of Blu Cantrell's "Hit Em Up Style.") Giddens has done more solo work — she was a show-stopper in the film of the Another Day, Another Time concert, as she sang a Gaelic song — and performs in the folk supergroup The New Basement Tapes.

Jenny Lewis On World Cafe

Feb 27, 2015

We're fans of Jenny Lewis' latest album, The Voyager. Since she and her band already came in to play the new songs live, Lewis invited us to do something different — drive through the San Fernando Valley, where she grew up, to find the inspiration for the title of The Voyager. So it's kind of a mystery in the back seat of a rental car, where we will also hear an acoustic version of the album's title track.

Gary Calamar On World Cafe

Feb 27, 2015

Meet Gary Calamar. He's many things: A DJ, an author, a recording artist and a music supervisor for films and TV.

He has been very successful choosing atmospheric and expressive music for shows like Six Feet Under and True Blood with showrunner Alan Ball, as well as Weeds, Entourage, Dexter and others.

We'll find out how he does what he does — including deciding to make his own CD You Are What You Listen To.

Jungle Fire On World Cafe

Feb 26, 2015

World Cafe's Sense of Place visit to LA continues today with a bit more of a funky West Coast vibe. Our guests are the powerful new Latin funk band Jungle Fire, whose album Tropicoso is out on North Hollywood-based Nacional Records.

Las Cafeteras On World Cafe

Feb 26, 2015

We have a special Latin Roots segment for our Sense of Place: LA today as we are joined by a band from East LA, Las Cafeteras. The band formed around a community space called the Eastside Café, where they studied Son Jarocho music from Mexico and made it their own.

We talk with Dwight Yoakam, whose career really took off in the 1980s when his debut album Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc. on Warner Bros. Records went to No. 1 on the country charts. Yoakam met our other guest today, Lenny Waronker, producer, A&R man and later president of Warner Bros., when that album came out.

Phil And Dave Alvin On World Cafe

Feb 25, 2015

The Blasters with Dave and Phil Alvin were an integral part of the Los Angeles punk scene in the 1980s, as well as the blues scene and even the cowpunk scene. Their high energy R&B was hard to deny. Phil sang, Dave played guitar and wrote songs. They parted acrimoniously in 1986, and it wasn't until last year's album of Big Bill Broonzy songs, Common Ground, that they recorded together again.

Gary Burden On World Cafe

Feb 25, 2015

Check out this video of an unusual interview with art director and album cover designer Gary Burden. He takes us up and down Laurel Canyon and discusses his experience living there in the '60's and '70s.

Harvey Kubernik On World Cafe

Feb 25, 2015

We get the history of the bohemian area of Hollywood known as Laurel Canyon from historian and author Harvey Kubernik. His book Canyon of Dreams: The Magic and the Music of Laurel Canyon describes the musically fertile area that has provided escape for Angelenos since the 1920's.

Pages