EL VY grew out of the writing that Matt Berninger of The National and Brent Knopf of Menomena and Ramona Falls had been working on together for the last few years. Lately, they've dedicated more time to their collaboration, and the result is a new album, Return To The Moon, and a nearly sold-out tour.
The first time you experience Christopher Paul Stelling singing and playing guitar is eye-opening. Stelling's attack on the nylon-string acoustic guitar is uniquely forceful, and it serves his songwriting well on his new album, Labor Against Waste. Hear him perform some of those new songs live in the studio as part of today's World Cafe session.
The Vulgar Boatmen was an unusual group, to say the least. After starting at the University of Florida, it eventually became two bands: one led by Robert Ray in Florida, the other by Dale Lawrence in Indiana. Ray and Lawrence collaborated long-distance on songwriting.
One of The Vulgar Boatmen's best albums, 1989's You And Your Sister, is being reissued on Nov. 28. On this page, discover (or re-discover) two songs from that album, including a new remix.
North Dakota singer-songwriter Shawn Colvin released her debut album, Steady On, in 1989. Her breakthrough came in 1996 with the album A Few Small Repairs and its Top 10 song "Sunny Came Home," which won the Grammy for Record and Song Of The Year.
Though Destroyer, the project led by Canadian musician Dan Bejar, has been making records since 1996 — even before Bejar became known as one of The New Pornographers — today's session marks Destroyer's World Cafe debut.
Boogarins is led by Fernando "Dino" Almeida and Benke Ferraz, who began playing music together as teenagers in the central Brazilian city of Goiânia. The four-piece band's first album of home recordings helped earn it a "best new artist" award from Rolling Stone Brasil.
In today's World Cafe Next segment, hear songs from Boogarins' second album, Manual, recorded during a tour break in Spain.
Rock star Tom Petty is the subject of today's interview with author Warren Zanes, whose new book, Petty: The Biography, is a deep and intimate profile. Zanes, the teenage rocker turned Ph.D. academic and executive director of Little Steven Van Zandt's Rock And Roll Forever Foundation, proved a perfect confidant to get Petty to open up.
For years, Chicago singer-songwriter Ezra Furman had been operating under the idea that meeting the audience's expectations was more important than being true to himself — and it was not working. Nine and a half years into his career, he hit bottom and decided that his 2013 album, Day Of The Dog, would be his last. But then, Furman began to openly embrace and discuss his own gender fluidity, and his career broke open in the U.K. and spread from there.