World Cafe

Weeknights 7-9PM

Hosted by radio veteran and music enthusiast David Dye, World Cafe presents up to ten hours each week of new and significant music and the artists who create it.

Serving up a blend of blues, rock, world, folk, and alternative country, live performances, and intimate interviews, the two-hour daily program is produced by WXPN-FM in Philadelphia.

World Cafe Next: Young Gun Silver Fox

11 hours ago

Young Gun Silver Fox is a hard-to-resist duo. One member (singer-songwriter Andy Platts) is from California, while the other (multi-instrumentalist Shawn Lee) hails from London; fittingly, the duo's debut is called West End Coast.

Margaret Glaspy On World Cafe

12 hours ago

One of the best debuts of 2016 so far is from the singer-songwriter Margaret Glaspy, whose new album is called Emotions And Math. A fan of Joni Mitchell from a young age, Glaspy began making music as a fiddler and played in backing bands before taking on the challenge of writing her own songs. She was a Berklee College of Music student — but only for a semester, before financial problems caused her to drop out.

Yeasayer On World Cafe

Aug 19, 2016

Musically, Yeasayer has never been able to stand still. Its 2007 debut, All Hour Cymbals, with its world-beat pulse and huge choruses, caused some listeners to peg the Brooklyn band as a bunch of flower children. Three years later, Yeasayer changed course with its synth-poppy second album, Odd Blood.

Even if you're not actually on the beach this late-summer Thursday, you can still enjoy this playlist of some of The Beach Boys' classics. With only a few exceptions, each clocks in at under three minutes — it's hard to believe that beautiful songs like "Caroline, No" and "Don't Worry Baby" took so little time to weave their spell.

Dinosaur Jr. On World Cafe

Aug 17, 2016

Dinosaur Jr., formed in 1984 in Amherst, Mass., is well known for its influence in the noisy, guitar-heavy, DIY style that permeated college-radio airwaves in the late 1980s and 1990s. The group, which then included Lou Barlow on bass and Murph on drums, often served as a vehicle for frontman J Mascis' songwriting and guitar work.

Brigid Mae Power On World Cafe

Aug 16, 2016

Brigid Mae Power's work, which is rooted in the acoustic world of traditional Irish tunes, creeps up on you like a fog. The Irish singer has recorded her music — most of which she's released on Bandcamp — in unique locations, such as old churches. Power's chosen locale for her new, self-titled album? Portland, Oregon. (American singer and songwriter Peter Broderick, who'd met her at a gig, convinced her to travel all that way to record.)

Steve Gunn On World Cafe

Aug 16, 2016

The guitarist, singer and songwriter Steve Gunn has become increasingly well known for his dense, energetic playing. Even when he's not working on his own material, Gunn always seems to have another project going on; most notably, he was an early member of his friend Kurt Vile's band The Violators.

World Cafe Next: Ethan Burns

Aug 15, 2016

Ethan Burns has one of those voices that you hear and immediately believe. The 25-year-old grew up in a working-class family in central California, with a gift for immediately being able to play the songs he heard. His vocal style is rough and his songs are relatable.

Burns is set to release his debut EP, 22 Knots, at the end of September. Hear two songs at the audio link above.

Bonnie Bishop On World Cafe

Aug 15, 2016

Nashville singer-songwriter Bonnie Bishop's career received a major boost when Bonnie Raitt recorded two of her songs — one on Slipstream, the other on Raitt's new album Dig In Deep. Still, that wasn't enough to completely convince Bishop that the years of touring through small clubs, living on hope alone, were worth it.

Right now, the world's focus is on Rio for the 2016 Olympics. Brazil is on our minds, too, so we've made a weekend playlist filled with international collaborations between Brazilian artists and other musicians from around the globe. These are some extraordinary duets, from bossa nova to tropicalia and beyond. No Olympic competition here — just collaboration!

William Bell On World Cafe

Aug 12, 2016

After starting his career in the vocal group The Del Rios, soul singer William Bell wrote and released his first solo single, "You Don't Miss Your Water," on Stax Records in 1961. While at Stax, he also co-wrote "Born Under A Bad Sign," which became bluesman Albert King's signature song. Five decades later, after not making a record for almost 10 years, he was encouraged to go into the studio with Americana producer John Leventhal.

For today's Throwback Thursday, World Cafe is re-airing a 2011 session with Gregg Allman. Explore some of the musical connections in Allman's life — from a musician who influenced him early on, to one who took his brother's place in The Allman Brothers Band.

Latin Roots: Xenia Rubinos

Aug 11, 2016

Xenia Rubinos, who has Puerto Rican and Cuban roots, sings in both Spanish and English and identifies as Afro-Latina. She now lives in Brooklyn, having always wanted to move to New York City to make music — but she made a detour to Boston along the way to attend the Berklee School of Music, "to appease my parents," she says. (It was a good thing she did: At Berklee, she met drummer Marco Buccelli, with whom she has been working ever since.)

Luther Dickinson On World Cafe

Aug 10, 2016

Luther Dickinson of the North Mississippi Allstars had an unusual childhood: He and his brother, drummer Cody Dickinson, are the sons of legendary Memphis producer and pianist Jim Dickinson, who notably played piano on The Rolling Stones' "Wild Horses." The family lived south of Memphis in the Mississippi hill country, a cultural pocket whose distinctive blues style is exemplified by the playing of Fred McDowell,

Alex Ebert, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros' lead singer, says that "Edward Sharpe" was originally a character that he made up to hide behind. In today's conversation, Ebert says that he and "Edward" have merged, to a certain extent. Still, he says, there's a tension between his invented persona and reality — which is why the cover of the band's latest album, PersonA, displays the name "Edward Sharpe" crossed out.

World Cafe Next: Weaves

Aug 8, 2016

The Toronto four-piece Weaves seems poised to have a long career of pushing the boundaries while still letting audiences in. The band is fronted by singer Jasmyn Burke, whose energy you don't even have to witness live to appreciate.

Weaves' self-titled LP came out this past June. Take a listen to these two tracks, and you'll hear an art-rock quartet that might sound a little like a cross between PJ Harvey and Talking Heads.

Mitski On World Cafe

Aug 8, 2016

The indie-rock singer-songwriter Mitski released her fourth album, Puberty 2, this past June. She recorded her first two albums, which were rather orchestral, while a student at the SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music. It wasn't until her third album that she added punkish guitars, and she describes Puberty 2 as an outgrowth of that album.

Allen Stone On World Cafe

Aug 5, 2016

The hippyish soul singer Allen Stone is an intense performer. His energetic shows, plus his warm and evocative albums, explain why Stone has such a solid fan base. His recording career has had its ups and downs, though: After the success of his self-titled 2011 album, he was signed by Capitol Records but felt he received little institutional support. This year, ATO reissued Stone's 2015 album Radius with additional tracks.

World Cafe #TBT: 1993

Aug 4, 2016

For Throwback Thursday, we're re-airing a 2011 Liz Phair session on today's episode of World Cafe. Phair's debut album, Exile In Guyville, came out in 1993 and was a huge success, topping Pitchfork's list that year.

Oliver John-Rodgers On World Cafe

Aug 3, 2016

Originally from Virginia, Oliver John-Rodgers now lives in Nashville. That's where he's been developing his music from singer-songwriter fare into a style he calls "acid cowboy," which draws on elements of indie and psychedelic rock. His third album, Nashville Demos, sounds less like a demo tape and more like a fully-fledged studio album in its thick, layered production.

Colvin & Earle On World Cafe

Aug 2, 2016

Singer-songwriters Shawn Colvin and Steve Earle have known each other for three decades. They were bandmates even before Colvin released her debut album in 1989, and Colvin covered Earle's song "Someday" for her 1994 album Cover Girl. But it was only recently that the two began touring and recording together as Colvin & Earle. They released their album Colvin & Earle, recorded in Nashville with producer Buddy Miller, earlier this summer.

World Cafe Next: The Marcus King Band

Aug 1, 2016

From the first note of The Marcus King Band's self-titled Fantasy Records debut, you can hear that this guy is an old soul. It might be a surprise, then, to learn that the singer and guitarist is only 22 years old. King grew up in South Carolina, where he played sideman to blues musicians and honed his formidable talent.

Violent Femmes On World Cafe

Aug 1, 2016

Violent Femmes' self-titled debut album spoke to hordes of teenagers and college kids when it came out in 1983. The record's acoustic-rock sound, lead singer and songwriter Gordon Gano's brash yet vulnerable teenage snark and his delightfully shocking language made it an album to embrace as if only a few knew about it. Four years after its release, Violent Femmes went gold without ever having appeared on the Billboard album charts — and after 10 years, it went platinum.

Moreland & Arbuckle On World Cafe

Jul 29, 2016

When harmonica ace Dustin Arbuckle met guitarist Aaron Moreland at an open mic in their hometown of Wichita, Kan., the two immediately decided that they'd better combine talents. That was in 2001, and they've been playing roadhouse blues together ever since.

Latin Roots: 'Quiero Creedence'

Jul 28, 2016

Like the recently released collection of Morrissey songs sung by Latin artists on the Mexrrissey compilation, Quiero Creedence explores another English-speaking artist beloved by Latin audiences. Josh Norek, co-host of the radio show The Latin Alternative, explains that working-class Mexicans, among others, really embrace the music of Creedence Clearwater Revival.

Bonnie Raitt On World Cafe

Jul 27, 2016

Right from the beginning, Bonnie Raitt has had an ear for great songs. Over the years. she's mined the work of John Prine, Jackson Browne, John Hiatt, Paul Brady and others. When she couldn't find the right songs, she'd write them herself, and she's sung them all with a soulful delivery.

Elizabeth Cook On World Cafe

Jul 26, 2016

Grand Ole Opry member and East Nashville singer-songwriter Elizabeth Cook has dealt with many personal challenges, including deaths in her family and her own divorce, over the last few years. The upside is that those experiences provided the seeds for some new songs. Cook, who also hosts the satellite-radio show Apron Strings, has never shied away from writing about her family — whether it's her father, who ran moonshine before becoming a welder, or her sister, who's battled heroin addiction.

WXPN in Philadelphia is hosting its own music festival this weekend, and you can watch many of the acts live on VuHaus, public radio's new music discovery platform.

Sunday's Webcast Schedule

  • Eliza Jones - 12 p.m. ET
  • Chicano Batman - 12:30 p.m. ET
  • The Marcus King Band - 1 p.m. ET
  • Diane Coffee - 1:40 p.m. ET
  • The Districts - 2:20 p.m. ET
  • Oliver John Rodgers - 3:15 p.m. ET
  • Mavis Staples - 3:55 p.m. ET

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