Artist to Watch

WXPN Radio

The premier guide for new and significant artists in rock, blues, and folk - including NPR-syndicated World Cafe ®

XPoNential Radio

24/7 Musical discovery. A unique mix of emerging and heritage blues, rock, world, folk, and alt-country artists.

World Cafe Archives

Join David Dye as he navigates the World Cafe through live performances and interviews with celebrated and emerging artists.

Folk Radio

Folk music radio streaming on the web; Americana, Roots Music, recordings, and stories from folk's best.
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The Hold Steady describes themselves as "a bunch of dudes who rock the hell out of Brooklyn, as well as the rest of the world," and if "the rest of the world" includes this year's XPoNential Stage, then they couldn't be more right. Known for their classic rock influences and narrative-based songs, this indie XPN favorite is coming back again to Wiggins Park after releasing their acclaimed sixth studio album, Teeth Dreams, this past March.
Robert Cray Liked The Beatles But Fell In Love With The Blues
Join us for a Free at Noon at the World Cafe Live at the Queen in Wilmington as Ani DiFranco and Matt Duke perform a live midday concert on Friday.



Ani DiFranco is far from your average folk singer/songwriter. She has been performing since the early 90s and has more than 20 albums to her name, in addition to activism work ranging as wide as her discography. The singer/songwriter uses her talent in anti-war campaigns, in support of environmental rights and for feminism advocacy. However, in her latest album, 2012’s ¿Which Side Are You On?, DiFranco hones in more on her personal life. Join her at Friday’s Free at Noon at World Café Live at the Queen in Wilmington. After her performance, DiFranco will headlines the Queen that night. Tickets for the show can be purchased here.

Recent Release: Which Side Are You on
Release Date: January 17, 2012
Label: Righteous Babe


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Four-piece folk-rock group Houndmouth has a soulful flair and an amazing layered sound that any listener could get into. Band members Katie Toupin, Matt Myers, Zak Appleby, and Shane Cody all like to sing - and they often sing together, layering vocals on top of heavy bass lines and skillful guitar riffs to create unique, toe-tapping songs.

Mississippi Blues Project artist James Cotton grew up playing the blues, singing and carrying his legendary tunes on his harmonica. He joined Muddy Waters as his harmonica player back in 1954 - a gig winning the group a Grammy in 1977 - and though the two have since parted ways, Cotton has continued to enthrall audiences with his bluesy harmonica, distinctive voice, and gift for songwriting.

Diego Garcia knows how to mine romantic yearning in his work, and his new album Paradise continues to expand upon the romantic sound he has been shaping throughout his career. His music drifts listeners back to the 1970's with its soft melodic riffs and use of strings, delicate percussion, and Spanish guitars; Garcia's lyrics lay gently on top in such a way that sounds like the crescendo of softly sung Spanish and lull audiences into pure enjoyment with each melodic turn.

With a distinctive voice and a diverse repertoire of musical styles and colors, singer-songwriter Nicole Atkins' new album Show Phaser is described as "a neon noir tour de force of hi-def late-night pop," with innovative and thought-provoking lyrics and melodies. Her style is constantly changing, and that's what makes her an exciting artist - with Atkins you never know what's coming next, but you always know it will be new and interesting.

Man Man is known for their eclectic musical landscaping, for pushing the envelope, and being fearlessly unique in their musical execution. The group's fifth-full length album On Oni Pond takes their reputation to new heights, and with past performances at XPN's Free at Noon and at Union Transfer proving to audiences just how much fun they can be.

Zydeco musician C.J. Chenier adds his own flavor to the genre with his accordion, creative covers, and energy through the roof; in fact, his new album is so jam packed with energy it could power a small city! His album Can't Sit Down was recorded in one live session at Rock Romano's Red Shack Studio in Houston, Texas, and is a testament to the kind of fast-paced excitement Chenier is sure to bring to a live performance.

Hurray for the Riff Raff is Alynda Lee Segarra, a 26-year old of Puerto Rican descent with marked influences from doo-wop and Motown to New Orleans soul to traditional country and folk. NPR has said that Hurray for the Riff Raff's music "sweeps across eras and genres with grace and grit," uniting audiences of all backgrounds with a common musical thread.

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