For the first time in 11 years—and after a two-year stint at CaesarsPalace in Las Vegas—country queen ShaniaTwain is on the road again on a national tour that kicked off in Seattle earlier this month. This spring, the 49-year-old singer announced that the tour, titled “Rock This Country,” will be the last time she goes out on the road, but not the last you’ll hear from her. She’s planning to release her fifth studio album, which she plans to release sometime in the next year.
She’ll make her way to Philadelphia on July 22nd, when she’ll play the WellsFargoCenter with opener Gavin Degraw. You can snag tickets here, but you may want to wait a week. We have two pairs to giveaway to local country fans in a contest that we’re running from today till next Friday, June 26th.
To win is simple, and familiar if you’ve taken part in our giveaways before: Sign up for our weekly e-newsletter in the box below. Next Friday, I’ll pick two of those names at random and you’ll be on your way to the Wells Fargo Center to rock this country with Shania. Good luck!
Yesterday, Ms. Janet Jackson got all of us queens clutching our music pearls when the iconic diva announced her Unbreakable World Tour, which will kick off in late summer in support of her hotly anticipated new studio album. The first 36-date leg of her tour kicks off Aug. 31 in Vancouver, BC and continues in North America through Nov. 12 in Honolulu, and while Philly wasn’t announced just yet (New York wasn’t either, don’t feel bad), there’s no doubt that the anticipation will have all of us biting our fabulous fingernails until our beloved diva makes the coveted announcement of her musical stop in our hometown.
Until that day comes, we might as well start perfecting our Janet dance moves, so I rounded up of 10 of her most iconic clips that feature her sexiest looks, delectable dancing, and of course, showcase what she’s owned for three decades: out-of-this-world talent. Being that all of Ms. Jackson if-you’re-nasty’s videos are iconic, this list certainly wasn’t an easy one to put together, but you will find that these videos are all wrapped in that Janet pleasure principle that we have to come to know and love from her for all these years. Start your Unbreakable World Tour engines….right now.
10.”Rock With U”
One of Janet’s most underrated videos…of all time. This dark, sexy, strobe-lit clip is not only iconic for its sleek costumes and ridiculously on point dancing, but the fact that it was magically shot in one take really takes this seductive Discipline number to the next diva level.
WXPN 88.5 presents Courtney Barnett, Australian singer-songwriter from Melbourne. In 2013, Barnett attracted attention from music critics in the U.S. and U.K. after a much-talked-about performances at the CMJ Music Festival in New York City. Her debut album, Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit, was released this past March. Listen before you go: " Pedestrian At Best." Monday, June 15, 8:30pm,Union Transfer, 1026 Spring Garden Street.
Trails and Ways is a four-person indie pop band from Oakland, California. The band members met while attending UC Berkeley, and after living abroad together, formed in early 2012. Their songs have been described as political and influential. They released their fourth album, “Pathology," this month after signing with Barsuk. Listen before you go: “Skeleton.” Tuesday, June 16, 8pm, Kung Fu Necktie, 1250 North Front Street.
Family of the Year is an indie rock band based in Los Angeles, California. Formed in 2009, the band is best known for their international hit “Hero,” which became a top 10 hit in Austria, Switzerland, Germany and Belgium. “Hero” was also featured in the hit film Boyhood. They will release their third album this year. Listen before you go: “Hero,” obviously. Wednesday, June 17, 8pm, World Café Live, 3025 Walnut Street.
Bhi Bhiman is a Sri Lankan-American folk-rock singer-songwriter. His sound has been compared to Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen and Woody Guthrie, and he is currently starting his national tour. Folk-rock band Goodnight, Texas will open for Bhiman. Listen before you go: “Moving to Brussels.” Thursday, June 18, 8:30pm, Boot & Saddle, 1131 South Broad Street.
The pop boy band best known for their huge success in the late-‘80s and early-‘90s, came back onto the music scene in 2008 and has been touring ever since. The group sold over 80 million records worldwide in the ‘90s, making them one of the world’s best-selling groups of all time. This Philly performance will also feature '90s hip-hop and R&B hitmakers Nelly and TLC. Listen before you go: “You Got It (The Right Stuff)." Friday, June 19, 7pm, Wells Fargo Center, 3601 South Broad Street. —Chelsey Hamilton
Radio 104.5 presents Third Eye Blind, the alternative rock band that hit commercial success in the late-‘90s with their albums Third Eye Blind and Blue. They’re best known for their hit songs “Semi-Charmed Life” and “Jumper.” This week they will release their fifth album, Dopamine, their first in six years. Alternative pop band Dashboard Confessional will also perform. Listen before you go: “Semi-Charmed Life.” Saturday, June 20, 7pm, Festival Pier, 601 North Columbus Boulevard. —Chelsey Hamilton
Sisters With Voices, or SWV, formed in 1990 as a gospel group but ended up becoming one of the most successful R&B groups of the ‘90s. This Grammy-nominated girl group parted in 1998 but reunited in 2015. The trio has sold more than 20 million records, making them one of the most popular girl bands of all time. Listen before you go: “I’m So Into You.” Sunday, June 21, 8pm, World Café Live, 3025 Walnut Street. —Chelsey Hamilton
Unless you spent your weekend under a rock or have some weird disease where your brain shuts down when listening to pop music like my boyfriend’s does, then you know Taylor Swift came to Philadelphia on her 1989 World Tour this weekend. Arguably one of the most successful and beloved musicians of our time, Swift blessed the Lincoln Financial Field yet again with her presence. Love her or hate her, the woman puts on one hell of a show. Here is a list of 10 great moments I witnessed at Friday’s concert as seen through the eyes of this devoted fan:
The Dad Representation
I have to say, the dads were representing at Taylor mad hard, which is always great to see. The true dad MVP would have to be Philadelphian Eric Kishbaugh, who accompanied his wife and daughter to the concert but had to sit by himself the whole night (the trio got three tickets, but only two of them were seated together). When I caught up with Kishbaugh, he was alone and holding this “Taylor Swift for President Sign.” Dad of the year award—and please buy this man a beer the next time you see him.
I was hesitant when we handed over our tickets at the gate and attendants handed each of us a “a special gift” from Taylor. The bracelet that we received resembled a GPS tracking device, but I would trust Tay with my life, so I slapped it on. Once Taylor started performing, the bracelets lit up in unison across the stadium, creating a neon light show that was synched to the concert. But like, I wouldn’t be surprised if the bracelets were also hypnotizing devices used as part of Taylor’s plan to assemble the largest army of small girls that the world has ever known.
b’lieve i’m goin down will be the title of Philly singer-songwriter KurtVile‘s followup to 2013’s Wakin’ On a Pretty Daze. The album is expected to be released this fall in conjunction with a world-tour schedule that will bring him to Philly’s Union Transfer with Waxahatchee on October 9th.
In a conversation we had with him last fall, Vile told us a few things that have been inspiring him through the process of making his new album. Perhaps his quote offers a peek at what to expect when b’elieve drops later this year: “A couple of my favorite songwriters right now are classic-period Randy Newman, and an amazing songwriter named John Prine. His lyrics are heartbreaking. There’s certain Southern Gothic fiction that I’m getting heavy into — Flannery O’Connor and Cormac McCarthy books. I’ve always been consuming. That’s just part of my personality, and it feeds into my music.”
Check out behind the scenes footage of him working on the album at Rancho de la Luna Studio in Joshua Tree, California. His full tour schedule is below:
Photographer Jeff Fusco was at the Taylor Swift concert at Lincoln Financial Field on Friday night, where he not only snapped Swift’s performance but a ton of great fan shots, as well. In his review of the show Philly Mag’s Rich Rys noted that: “The crowd was what you’d expect–overwhelmingly female, ranging from toddlers to pre-teens to college kids and moms dressed like their daughters, in short-shorts and sundresses. And from that first song to the inevitable finale, “Shake It Off,” Swift had them all hooked.”
And hooked they were. Fans brought out the body paint, signs and neon galore to cheer on the Wyomissing native. Check out Fusco’s fan photos below, and see his shots of Swift along with our review here.
James “Winky” Fairorth inside his studio’s cavernous rehearsal space. Photograph by Eric Prine
The ducks in the park, the old-timey clock at the town’s heart, the rustic storefronts and occasional horse-drawn carriage suggest time has stopped here. Lititz, Pennsylvania, a small town about nine miles north of Lancaster, recalls the Main Street USA of Norman Rockwell, a place where shopkeepers maintain odd hours and post little hand-drawn signs in the windows when they’re CLOSED FOR THE WINTER. Read more »
Last night was my first TaylorSwift concert, and I learned a Taylor Swift concert is many things. There are costume changes—10 by my count, over the course of two and a half hours—and each one will involve sequins or rhinestones or fringe, perhaps leather or thigh-high boots, and almost always an exposed midriff (though never, ever navel). There are Fitbit-like wristbands for each concertgoer that flash and flicker, creating a mesmerizing light show across the crowd. There are surprises, and for anyone attending tonight’s second sold-out show, beware of potential spoilers ahead. There is excessive pandering to the hometown, though most of the assembled will consider it bonding, and weirdly, I sort of did, too. And you will become a part of a 50,000-strong group therapy session. There is also music.
Photo courtesy of King of Prussia Business Improvement District.
This week, King of Prussia Business Improvement District relaunched a summertime arts initiative that gives locals something unique to do at lunchtime. Rock Your Lunch! is a free summer concert series that aims to create a more vibrant community and celebrate the 15,000-plus employees working in the district (and just anyone who wants to come hear some good tunes).
A few weeks ago, The Roots invited A$AP Rocky to Philadelphia to perform at the eighth annual Roots Picnic at Penn’s Landing. Last night, A$AP returned the favor by asking them on to come on stage to back him up on The Tonight Show as he rapped two of his latest singles, “L$D” and “Jukebox Joints.” The songs come from his sophomore album At. Long. Last. A$AP., which hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and R&B/Hip-Hop Albums charts. Check out the performance above.