World Cafe Encore Week: Revisiting Studio Sessions Of 2019

Aug 19, 2019

Looking back on the past year of sessions this week, World Cafe is digging into the archives for some performances and interviews since last January. You'll hear sessions with artists including young producer, singer, multi-instrumentalist King Princess, the young rockers of Cage The Elephant, folk musician Rhiannon Giddens and more.

Listen to all the sessions below.

Karl Denson
Robbie Jeffers / Courtesy of the artist

Karl Denson has one of the coolest side gigs in the world. In 2015, he took over for Bobby Keys as the saxophonist for The Rolling Stones. In his day job however, he's the leader of Karl Denson's Tiny Universe, a fusion of funk, jazz, soul, and rock. He also co-founded the Greyboy Allstars and got his start on Let Love Rule from Lenny Kravitz. (Read more)

King Princess outside of WXPN Studio's in Philadelphia, PA.
Gabriela Barbieri / WXPN

When Mikaela Straus, who records as King Princess, says "I've never been subtle. I don't think now is the time," she means it. Straus is a producer, multi-instrumentalist, writer and emerging gay icon with incredible confidence charisma and the musical chops to back it up.

Straus literally grew up in a NYC recording studio built by her dad, Oliver, and would sleep there on the couch as a kid. She learned about the music industry from people who were immersed in it and explains how that has helped in her own career. (Read more)

Cage the Elephant's Matt Shultz inside the World Cafe Performance Studio
Gabriela Barbieri / WXPN

Eleven years ago, after a Metallica show, a gentleman named Warren told me "We have this band you have to hear." I jump into his car, he pops the CD in the player, and this blares out: "Oh, there ain't no rest for the wicked / Money don't grow on trees / I got bills to pay, I got mouths to feed / There ain't nothing in this world for free."

"Ain't No Rest for the Wicked" was the first of many successes for Bowling Green, Kentucky's Cage the Elephant. Over the course of five albums, the band has become one of the biggest in rock, not to mention an absolute cannot miss live show. (Read More)

Rhiannon Giddens and Francesco Turrisi.
Karen Cox / Courtesy of the artist

Rhiannon Giddens and Francesco Turrisi are both gifted multi-instrumentalists and devoted students of music history. Each has dug into the past to illuminate the present and worked to give credit where credit is due for the way instruments and ideas have moved over time between people and places.

While Rhiannon's work has focused on the influence of African traditions on what we think of as American music, Francesco is an expert in the often unacknowledged influence of Arabic and Middle Eastern music on what we think of as European sound. (Read more)

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