World Cafe

Weekdays 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Host Talia Schlanger presents World Cafe, which features ten hours each week of new and significant music and the artists who create it.  
Serving up a blend of blues, rock, world, folk, and alternative country, live performances, and intimate interviews, the two-hour daily program is produced by WXPN-FM in Philadelphia.

Talia Schlanger hosts World Cafe, weekdays @ 2, on KRCB-FM Radio 91!


Galea McGregor

It’s an encore presentation of our session with the grateful and warm Jack Johnson! Johnson flew in from Hawaii and walked into our studio wearing sandals to perform live songs and talk about his passion for the environment and his family. Jack Johnson on the World Cafe. 

World Cafe airs weekdays at 2:00 pm on KRCB-FM Radio 91 / streaming @  / Comcast Cable channel 961 all over the Bay Area / Download the FREE KRCB Mobile App @ iTunes & Google Play!

On their new fifth record, Off to the Races, Jukebox the Ghost are at their pop-rock best – The songs are filled with inventive melodies, big hooks, and plenty of piano. The trio is in the studio today to play a live set, including the alternative radio hit, “Everybody’s Lonely.” And we'll hear about Queen's influence on their music and some of the fun tricks they used on the new album, like layering lead singer Ben Thornewill’s voice over 100 times. Jukebox the Ghost join host Stephen Kallao, on the next World Cafe.

Check out the sound of new Nashville today on the World Cafe! Liz Cooper & The Stampede have just released a debut that showcases their take on 21st-century psychedelia, called Window Flowers. Liz was brought up on the music of the Grateful Dead, and after teaching herself how to play guitar, developed an intricate, looping style that's made her one of the most distinctive guitarists in the city's rock scene. We'll hear some of that in today's live performance. And Liz joins Nashville correspondent Ann Powers to talk about everything from golf to the hippie movement. 

Courtney Marie Andrews left home at age 16 to pursue music. She spent years touring the country and learning how to get by on her own, which involved sleeping at rest stops and gas stations, and releasing records between bartending shifts. In April, Courtney joined host Talia Schlanger to share stories from her journey and perform songs from the new album, May Your Kindness Remain, live in the studio. Courtney Marie Andrews, on this encore edition of the World Cafe.

Nick Lowe has been making music for over 50 years, with highlights like "Cruel to Be Kind" and "What's So Funny 'Bout Peace, Love, and Understanding," which his friend and longtime collaborator Elvis Costello famously covered. Lately, the instrumental rockabilly band Los Straightjackets has been backing Lowe on tour, and it was only natural they'd record an album together. They're all in the studio today to play a live set from the new EP, Tokyo Bay/Crying Inside. And in a conversation with host Stephen Kallao, Lowe reflects on his long career and, in the process, shares a lot of wisdom.

Jill Sternheimer of the Lincoln Center and World Cafe's Nashville correspondent Ann Powers just released a list of the 200 Greatest Songs of the 21st Century by women and non-binary artists. It's part of NPR Music's "Turning the Tables" project, meant to change the way we talk about popular music. Seventy music writers got to weigh in with their picks, which include names you know – like Adele, Amy Winehouse, and Jill Scott – and those you might not – like Kaki King and Jamila Woods. Host Talia Schlanger takes us through the list for some great listening, on the next World Cafe.

Jim Lauderdale has been a staple of Nashville’s music scene for over thirty years, releasing dozens of solo albums and writing for the likes of George Strait and Patti Loveless. In 2016, he was awarded the Americana Music Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award, but he wasn’t ready to stop there. Jim is back this year with two new records: a new studio album called Time Flies, and a collection of songs recorded with mandolin player, Roland White, nearly 40 years ago.

On his new album Out of the Blues, Boz Scaggs pays tribute to the blues music he first fell in love with growing up in Oklahoma and Texas. Boz tells the story of seeing his first concert – Ray Charles, and shares what it was like when his family recently lost their home in the California wildfires. Plus Boz and his band perform live.

The name Rainbow Kitten Surprise is your first hint that the five-piece experimental rock band oozes creativity and energy. Hailing from Boone, North Carolina, they found a huge audience on the internet before even leaving their hometown, thanks to some successful songs. Now, the band is a hit on the festival circuit, as well, getting rave reviews for their electrifying live shows. We'll hear some of that in today's live studio session, and Rainbow Kitten Surprise talk with Nashville correspondent Ann Powers about their new album, How To: Friend, Love, Freefall. On the next World Cafe.

Nedda Afsari

Since her 2009 breakout record, Actor, St. Vincent has been making experimental indie rock for an exuberant fan base, and landed a Grammy for her 2014 self-titled album. Her latest, called Masseduction, was released last year, and she visited the Cafe to perform beautiful acoustic versions of some of the new music. We'll hear that live studio session, and a conversation about pills, depression, and paparazzi. St. Vincent is host Talia Schlanger's guest, on this encore edition of the World Cafe.

In the year and a half since her last World Cafe visit, Amanda Shires has been busy. She won Emerging Artist of the Year at the Americana Music Awards, raised a toddler, finished her Masters of Fine Arts, and found time to record her new album, To The Sunset. She joins host Talia Schlanger today to discuss the Nashville music scene, and she tells about the time she called a radio station to give them a piece of her mind after hearing a steady stream of only male voices.

Stanley Clarke joins host Kallao on the World Cafe. He’s a master of both the acoustic and electric bass, and in the ‘70s, he helped pioneer jazz-fusion with Chick Corea in Return to Forever. On his new record, The Message, Clarke teams up with younger jazz musicians to create an album full of influences, from classical, to rock, and even hip-hop. We’ll hear great stories about his friends Keith Richards and Tom Petty, and how he conveys emotion as an instrumental artist.

Anna Webber

David Crosby tells stories about The Byrds, Crosby Stills & Nash, Miles Davis, Jackson Browne and his relationship with Joni Mitchell. And Crosby performs music from his album, Sky Trails. It was produced by his son, James Raymond, who was given up for adoption and didn't meet Crosby until he was a grown man. 

World Cafe is heard weekdays at 2:00 pm on KRCB-FM Radio 91 / streaming @  / Comcast Cable channel 961 all over the Bay Area / Download the FREE KRCB Mobile App @ iTunes & Google Play!

Dave Lory (left) with Jeff Buckley (right)Credit Merri Cyr / Courtesy of the authorEdit | Remove


On her new album, Tell Me How You Really Feel, Courtney Barnett serves up the sort of sharp lyrics and shredded guitars that fans fell in love with on her 2015 debut. Last month, she joined host Talia Schlanger for a conversation about what it was like working with Kurt Vile on the record, and being married to fellow musician Jen Cloher. All this and a live performance. On an encore edition of the World Cafe.

Galea McGragor

Billy Corgan, the iconic frontman of '90s band Smashing Pumpkins, released a brand new solo record in 2017 under his given name, William Patrick Corgan. As he puts it, Ogilala is a return to the "sensitive Pisces guy" fans might remember from 1993’s Siamese Dream, and he credits producer Rick Rubin for that. We'll hear some of the new music in a live performance at the World Cafe. And Corgan talks with host Talia Schlanger about the childhood experiences that shaped his reaction to fame, and the aftermath of his Pumpkins persona. On this encore edition of the World Cafe.

Natalie Prass had an entire album written and ready to record in 2016, and then the presidential election happened. In Natalie's words, she was devastated, so she scrapped the material and wrote her new politically charged album, The Future and The Past. You might expect embittered or in-your-face songs, but her music is full of a dancy sense of hope. She'll explain why in today's conversation with host Talia Schlanger, and Natalie and her band perform live in the studio.

Emma Silverstone / WXPN

Adam Weiner is the leader of the piano-rock outfit Low Cut Connie, and he's got a lot of fans, including Sir Elton John, who featured his music on his Beats 1 radio show.  Plus, former POTUS Barack Obama added "Boozophilia" to his Spotify summer playlist. Star endorsements are good, but the music lives up to the hype. Low Cut Connie will play songs from their new album Dirty Pictures, Pt. 2, and Adam will play DJ with some of his favorite records.

Galea McGregor / WXPN

It's an encore presentation of our session with The War on Drugs. The band performs live music from their album, A Deeper Understanding, which won the Grammy award for Best Rock Album earlier this year. And lead singer and guitarist Adam Granduciel talks about making the record, discovering Bob Dylan's music and learning to manage his anxiety.

Kelly Loverud

Dessa’s latest album was inspired by a unique experiment. She recruited a team of scientists to locate the spot in her brain responsible for a longstanding heartache and then worked to get rid of that feeling.  She talks about that, being a responsible rapper, and working with Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda on the next World Cafe.  

Today's Dave Matthews Band is different from the 1991 outfit that defied rock and roll logic with the combination of jazz saxophonist LeRoi Moore and classical violinist Boyd Tinsley. LeRoi tragically passed away a decade ago, and Boyd left the band earlier this year. In a conversation with host Talia Schlanger, Dave talks about the state of DMB now - after releasing their new album, Come Tomorrow. We'll also hear how LeRoi still influences him, and what happened when Dave and his daughter ran into Brandi Carlile at the March for Our Lives. All this and a live performance.

Ben Grimes

Guitarist and songwriter Zack Green had already been married six months, before he discovered that his wife Dani Green's harmonies were the perfect complement to his music. Now, their creative chemistry powers the folk group, Birdtalker. They reached over 24 million streams on Spotify for their song, "Heavy," before ever going out on tour, and the hit is featured on their recently released debut, called One. Today, they join Nashville correspondent Ann Powers to play live, and Zack and Dani talk about how their spirituality feeds their songs.

Kelsey Stanger

Many bands are proud of their hometown, but few rep their city as much as the Houston-based group The Suffers — they consider Houston's music scene and diversity to be a core part of their identity. We'll hear some of the eight-piece band's energetic R&B in a live studio performance today. And they'll share about the challenges they faced on their rise to fame, like the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey and discrimination by music executives. The Suffers' conversation with host Stephen Kallao, and live music from the new album, Everything Here, on the next World Cafe.


Neko Case made her new self-produced album, Hell-On, during a period of personal struggle, and a haunting effect comes through in the music. While recording the album in Sweden, she found out that her house in Vermont had burned down. The same day, she recorded vocals for a new song, called "Bad Luck." We'll hear about that experience in a conversation with host Talia Schlanger today. And Neko also shares about growing up in Washington State, with her parents who struggled with drugs and alcohol, and her reverence for nature.

Since they met at Boston's New England Conservatory, Lake Street Dive have been making carefully arranged music with tricky harmonies. Today, we'll revisit a recent live performance from their latest album, Free Yourself Up. The band joined host Talia Schlanger in the studio to shares stories from their early days on tour, when they travelled with a big upright bass in the front seat of their Subaru. And we'll hear what it's like to spend the fourth of July with Stephen Colbert. On the next World Cafe.

Adam Kissick / NPR

On his new album, Be More Kind, Frank Turner sends a message about how we treat ourselves and the state of the world. He's been criticized for his political viewpoints in the past, even receiving hate mail and death threats. But the folk-punk singer-songwriter recently decided to dive back into social commentary on the new record, which features a song called "Make America Great Again." Today, we'll learn what that means to Frank in a wide-ranging political and personal conversation with host Talia Schlanger.

Rocco Peditto

The rootsy and lyrical rock style of L.A. band Dawes has had a hold on charmed fans for nearly a decade. They're back with a new album, called Passwords, and lead singer Taylor Goldmsith talks with host Talia Schlanger about writing the new songs, and the minor medical emergency that inspired one of them. Plus, we'll hear about his experience climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro with his fiancé, actress Mandy Moore. And Dawes perform live.

The Record Company made their 2016 debut album in bass player Alex Stiff's living room in L.A. and wound up with hit songs, sold-out headlining shows, and a Grammy nomination. All on the strength of that one album, Give It Back to You. Now they've released the follow-up, called All of This Life. The trio joins host Talia Schlanger to talk about their surprising and quick rise to fame and what life has been like since. 

Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real carry the country rock torch for a new generation – From all-out rockers to tender ballads, and lyrics full of humor and heartache. Lukas is the son of Willie Nelson, who the band has opened for many times, and they've also collaborated on records with Neil Young, including his latest one, The Visitor. We'll hear how they landed that gig, and it wasn't by having a famous father, as Lukas tells host Talia Schlanger. We're revisiting Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real's in-studio performance, on this encore edition of the World Cafe.

You only have one chance to make a first impression, and these artists nailed it. On today's special edition of the World Cafe, the theme is Album 1, Side 1, Song 1. Join host Stephen Kallao as he plays the opening track from debut albums that left lasting impressions on the music world. Songs like "Don't Know Why" by Norah Jones, R.E.M.'s "Radio Free Europe," and Violent Femmes' "Blister in the Sun". It's an Independence Day playlist of some of the best musical beginnings. On the next World Cafe.