Friday, February 5, 2016

POSTED: Friday, February 5, 2016, 4:21 PM
Trey Anastasio, guitar and lead vocals, opens with the song 'Crowd Control' at the Mann Center in Philadelphia, Pa., on August 11, 2015. (Jessie Fox/

Phish will return to the Mann Center for Performing Arts once again for a two night stand on June 28 and June 29. 

The ticket lottery is already open at, and will end Sunday, February 21 at 11:59 p.m. Tickets go on sale to the general publicTuesday, February 25. 

The boys of Phish are particularly fond of the Mann Center. It's smaller than their normal venue, but have played the Mann their last few stands in Philadelphia. 

POSTED: Thursday, February 4, 2016, 10:17 PM
Maurice White (in center) of Earth, Wind & Fire. (Legacy Recordings)

Maurice White, the founder of 1970s R & B hitmakers, Earth, Wind & Fire died at the age of 74 on Wednesday.

The Memphis born bandleader and former session drummer sufferered from Parkinson's and stopped touring with the band in 1995. White's death was announced on Thursday by his brother and bandmate Verdine White, who wrote "the world has lost another great musican and legend." His obiituary is here.

Earth Wind & Fire steadily scored joyous pop and R&B hits in the 1970s and 1980s, and were known for Philip Bailey's soaring vocals, punchy horn charts and lavish, pyrotechnic stage shows. White's loss was mourned around the music world. Nile Rodgers of Chic called him "one of the most amazing innovators of all time." On Facebook, Roots drummer Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson wrote "Maurice truly made African art so sophisticated & beautiful."

POSTED: Tuesday, February 2, 2016, 12:32 PM
Singer-songwriter Usher will perform at this year's Roots Picnic. (Getty Images for Samsung)

The event that marks the beginning of Philly music festival season has revealed its lineup.

The 9th annual Roots Picnic, happening Saturday, June 4 at Festival Pier at Penn's Landing, touts big names and an excellent selection of up & comers on three stages.

Usher, FutureLeon Bridges and The Roots will headline the show with a mix of old and new – Blood Orange, Kehlani, DMX, Jidenna, Ibeyi, Paris Monster, Lil Dicky, Migos, Anderson .Paak & the Free Nationals, Willow Smith, LOLAWOLF, Tish Hyman and Philly’s own Lil Uzi Vert. DJ sets from Kaytranada, Swizz Beats, Metro Boomin, Rich Medina, and Everyday People feat. DJ Moma will keep you energized under the warm sun.

POSTED: Monday, February 1, 2016, 12:55 PM
Santigold performs on the Liberty Stage during day two of Made In America along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway on Sunday, September 6, 2015. (YONG KIM / Staff Photographer )

Philly-born musician Santigold is getting ready to release her new album 99 Cents later this month, her first record since 2012’s Master of My Make-Believe that put her on the pop music map. 

On Monday morning she announced dates for her album-supporting "We Buy Gold" tour which will bring her to Philadelphia’s TLA on May 1. Tickets go on sale Friday, Feb. 5 at noon EST.

Inquirer music critic Dan DeLuca has a feature on genre-blending artist in the coming weeks, so keep your eyes peeled for that.

POSTED: Monday, February 1, 2016, 12:23 PM
Singer Billy Corgan of The Smashing Pumpkins. (Victor Moriyama / Getty Images)

Billy Corgan and company just announced plans for a 19-city "In Plainsong" tour that will come to Philadelphia April 8 at Tower Theater. Smashing Pumpkins embarked on a similar tour last year with the same name.

A press release describes the set as “an evening of acoustic based music and electronic soundscapes” with original drummer Jimmy Chamberlin, and Liz Phair as the opening act, marking her first U.S. tour dates in six years.

The band also promises they are heading to the studio immediately after tour to record a new album inspired by the findings during their time on the road and on stage.

POSTED: Friday, January 29, 2016, 11:47 AM
Rihanna, with 'ANTI' album art. (Christopher Polk / Getty Images)

Like everything about Rihanna’s eighth album, the launch of ANTI (Roc Nation ** 1/2) was a bit of a muddle.  

The unexpected album release in the middle of the night has become an essential element of music superstar marketing, perfected, naturally, by Beyonce, with her out-of-the-blue 2013 self-titled release. By contrast, by the time ANTI became finally available late Wednesday night on Jay Z’s Tidal streaming service, we had known about it for what seemed like forever.

Three would-be album launching singles - the ill conceived “American Oxygen,” belligerent “Bitch Better Have My Money,” and not bad “FourFiveSeconds” (a Kanye West and Paul McCartney collaboration) - came and went in 2015, with none of them winding up on the final album.

POSTED: Friday, January 29, 2016, 12:00 AM
Filed Under: Music & Nightlife
Bruce Springsteen performs onstage at A+E Networks "Shining A Light" concert at The Shrine Auditorium on November 18, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Getty Images)

It can be a challenge for music fans to plan ahead these days, when the element of surprise is such an important part of a big-name artist's marketing strategy. Many of the bold-faced releases previewed below are expected in the early stages of 2016, but only the acts themselves know exactly when they're coming.

The lucky 21 albums and shows highlighted here represent only a fraction of the interesting stuff that's coming in our pop-saturated culture. There also are highly anticipated albums (with no scheduled release dates) coming from global agit-pop artist M.I.A., Irish uber-rockers U2, and Kanye West associate Pusha T, who also plays the Trocadero on March 25.

With moneymaking in the music business happening mostly on the road, the concert calendar for the indoor season is crammed as well. More shows of note include Jenny Lewis at Union Transfer on Feb. 2. Best Coast and Wavves at Electric Factory on Feb. 17, Los Lobos at the Sellersville Theater Feb. 27, Red Baraat's Festival of Colors at Ardmore Music Hall on March 25, Basia Bulat at Boot & Saddle March 30, and Iggy Pop and Josh Homme at Academy of Music on April 15. And a bunch of big shows at Wells Fargo Center to boot, with Carrie Underwood on Feb. 22, The Who on March 14, AC/DC on April 1 and Justin Bieber May 7 and 8.

POSTED: Thursday, January 28, 2016, 7:58 AM
Chris Martin of Coldplay. (Matt Syales / Associated Press)

British soft-rockers Coldplay will embark on a seven date stadium tour this summer, with an August date in South Philadelphia at Lincoln Financial Field on the itinerary on August 6.

It will be the first time that the Chris Martin-led band, who will play the Super Bowl half time show on Feb. 7 (with Beyonce as a guest), has played the Linc. The quartet, who released their album A Head Full Of Dreams late last year, has performed at the Wells Fargo Center across the street many times before. 

There's a pre-sale this Friday though Citi credit cards - the tour sponsor - and tickets go on sale to the general public at 10 a.m. on Feb. 5 at

About this blog
Encompassing the sounds and beats of the city, we're here to turn you on to the local notables and under-the-radar artists, while showing you more of the bands and hot spots you already know and love.

Gab Bonghi Staff Writer
Dan DeLuca Inquirer Music Critic
Sofiya Ballin
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