World Cafe

The premier public radio showcase for contemporary music serving up an eclectic blend that includes blues, rock, world, folk, and alternative country.

World Cafe Next: The Vulgar Boatmen

Nov 9, 2015

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.

Shawn Colvin On World Cafe

Nov 6, 2015

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.

Mac DeMarco On World Cafe

Nov 5, 2015

Canadian jangle-pop singer-songwriter Mac DeMarco is an itinerant: Originally from Edmonton, he's made stops in Vancouver and Montreal on his way to Queens, where he now lives and records.

Destroyer On World Cafe

Nov 4, 2015

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.

"My whole life / Was like a picture of a sunny day," Carrie Brownstein sings in Sleater-Kinney's "Modern Girl." It's one of the band's happier-sounding songs, with a catchy, almost sweet melody belied by the deeply ironic, cutting lyrics. She follows up those lines with the ones that inspire the title of her new book: "My baby loves me, I'm so hungry / Hunger makes me a modern girl."

Watkins Family Hour On World Cafe

Nov 3, 2015

What time is it? Why, it's the Watkins Family Hour, led by Sean and Sara Watkins of the bluegrass band Nickel Creek.

KEXP Presents: Paul Weller

Nov 3, 2015

We were excited when we heard renowned singer-songwriter Paul Weller would stop by the KEXP studios for an acoustic session, but little did we know he'd be bringing his five-piece band with him for this very special unplugged set.

The intimate performance spotlighted his 12th solo release, Saturn's Pattern, as well as old favorites from both his older bands, The Jam and Style Council. KEXP felt truly blessed to be in the presence of "The Modfather."


  • "These City Streets"

World Cafe Next: Boogarins

Nov 2, 2015

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.

Ezra Furman On World Cafe

Oct 28, 2015

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.