WCBN Presents Clear Plastic Masks

Sat, 10/22/2016 - 9:45pm

WCBN presents Clear Plastic Masks live and free in a university lecture hall! This rag tag band of garage rockers are finishing up a release tour for their sophomore LP, Nazi Hologram, with your pals here at WCBN.

It's all going down in Angell Hall Auditorium B this Saturday night at 9:45 p.m. Students, radioers, vibers, lovers, hoodlums, and rugrats get in free. See you there!

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Monthly Top Picks - Headlined by Whitney, Solange, and Kamasi

Chicago-based Whitney landed the top spot on this month's Top Picks from WCBN. Melodic and distinct, this group is definitely one to watch. Their debut album, Light Upon the Lake, features 10 tracks, each equally enjoyable.

Best New Music goes to Solange, and it wasn't even close (sorry, Green Day). Truly emerging from the shadow of her sister for the first time, A Seat at the Table was an opportunity to prove herself. And she did. Cranes in the Sky features her divine vocals driven by a sweet bass line.

THE name in West Coast jazz, Kamasi Washington, played two nights at the Michigan Theater this past week. Gaining attention on Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly,  Washington went on to release The Epic and more recently, the Kipling Theme on Netflix's star-studded soundtrack for its new series, The Get Down.

We also give a nod to Mark Mothersbaugh of DEVO, recent guest of the Penny W. Stamps Speaker Series, and U-M alum Theo Katzman of Vulfpeck who will be playing Nov 5th at the Blind Pig.

Michael G. Nastos Presents an Interview with Paul VornHagen

On Thursday, August 4 at 1 PM, WCBN welcomes Paul VornHagen, a bandleader in his own right and member of the award-winning Lunar Octet and Tumbao Bravo for an in-studio interview and recorded music feature. Substitute DJ Michael G. Nastos will conduct this talk during the Freeform with Ian radio program.

Some thirty years after they formed, The Lunar Octet reunited two years ago at the Kerrytown Concert House, and in mid-July of this year at the Michigan Jazz Festival. They will be joining together again to play the Flint Jazz Festival Saturday, August 13, and The Ark on Sunday, August 14. Out-of-town residents and former Ann Arborites, leader/drummer Jon Krosnick (Northern California), saxophonist/composer Steve Hiltner (North Carolina) and keyboardist Mark Kieswetter (Toronto) will reconvene in an expanded Lunar Octet with Ann Arbor’s Sam Clark on electric guitar, percussionists Aron Kaufman and Olman Piedra, Mid-Michigan bassist Jeff Dalton, founding bassists Dan Bilich and Dan Ladin, and A2 trumpeter Brandon Cooper for these performances.

Ann Arbor-based multi-woodwind veteran and vocalist Paul VornHagen will be on the airwaves to discuss his solo career, his new PKO label CD, history of the ensembles, the band members various roles, as well as the repertoire of original Latin, jazz, funk and fusion that has served The Lunar Octet well over many decades.

To listen to this broadcast, either tune in to 88.3 FM Ann Arbor or follow the link at the top of this page to stream online. 

Live on the The Down Home Show: Mark Lavengood

On Saturday at 2 PM, WCBN will be welcoming Mark Lavengood—bluegrass artist and dobroist extroardinaire—and his band on The Down Home Show to talk with Tex and perform live on the air! Lavengood, a Grand Rapids native, mastered a variety of musical instruments and genres before entering the Michigan bluegrass scene, then turning to perfect his technique with the dobro, a type of resonator guitar, and forming his Mark Lavengood Bluegrass Bonanza! band. Be sure to tune in to 88.3 FM, or click the link at the top of this page to stream live, and enjoy this special presentation of some of the best country-related music in Michigan.  

Bill Laswell Mixtape Special on What It Is

On Friday at 8 PM, Sean will be taking the helm on this week's What It Is and featuring an incredible treat. Bill Laswell has put together an epic mixtape highlighting his work with Bernie Worrell, and Sean will be sharing it with us. Here's what Sean has to say about this feature: 

"Bill Laswell is a legendary producer and Bernie Worrell is the legendary keyboard player for Parliament and Funkadelic, Talking Heads and countless others. Bill and Bernie worked together extensively over the years and this is a mixtape of some of those collaborations put together by Bill Laswell himself." 

You won't hear this kind of quality material anywhere else, so tune into 88.3 FM tomorrow night (or stream right here—look for the link at the top of the page)! 

WCBN at Pitchfork Music Fest

July 21, 2016

By Elle Shwer


Chicago was bumping this past weekend at Pitchfork Music Festival and WCBN was there to watch it all live. Pitchfork Music Festival consisted of a lot of Virtue Cider, free Clif Bars and me challenging my generally mainstream music taste. For the most part, the Pitchfork lineup leaned toward underground artists where the performers themselves were quite diverse in genres. I danced foolishly to soulful R&B British singer NAO, witnessed the makings of “A Footwork Party” brought to the stage by RP Boo and his accomplices, and was inspired by indie pop headliner Sufjan Stevens to live more in the moment (as a result, I have no pictures from his set). Many cite the highlight of the weekend to be Brian Wilson performing Pet Sounds which had the whole crowd singing along to the Beach Boys classics, but I found myself wandering to the smaller stage to watch eclectic R&B/Hip Hop performer Anderson .Paak instead.



My personal favorite performance of the weekend was BJ the Chicago Kid -  a popular rapper whose fame arose in the song Studio by Schoolboy Q  and has features on Chance the Rapper’s latest mix Coloring Book. Noteable seconds include Anderson .Paak and Neon Indian. Sadly, I had to head back to Ann Arbor before the headliners Sunday and missed the surprise arrival of Chance the Rapper who took the stage with Jeremih. 


A color-popping pic from @pitchfork music fest. #p4kfest

A photo posted by WCBN_FM 88.3 (@wcbn_fm) on

My only complaint about the weekend is how many of the bands overlapped. As someone who wants to see everything and be everywhere, I found myself spending more time travelling between the three stages then actually taking the time to listen to entire sets. And if one performer started late due to disorganization (usually tech related), it meant I would either have to miss the next band I wanted to see or skip the person I had already waited to 20 minutes in silence to watch.

At the end of the day, I am really lucky to have had the opportunity to attend Pitchfork and I felt pride walking around repping WCBN. Till next time! 


On-Air Interview on July 12: RJ Spangler

At noon on Tuesday, July 12, Selective Memory will be pleased to welcome RJ Spangler into the studio to talk with guest DJ Michael. Spangler is a drummer, bandleader, a promoter and artist manager for Detroit jazz and blues artists, and co-founder and CEO of Eastlawn Records. He is also a founder and member of several local jazz and blues music groups, including the award-winning swing band, Planet D Nonet, and RJ's Kansas City Six.

Spangler will be performing in Ann Arbor this week, appearing at the Old Town Tavern with the RJ Spangler Trio. He'll also be making an appearance at the Michigan Jazz Festival on July 17 at Schoolcraft College, as part of the PD9 Township Jazz Project.

To listen to the show, you can tune in to 88.3 FM Ann Arbor or stream online directly from the WCBN website.


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