Bruce Warren

Bruce Warren is assistant general manager for programming of WXPN in Philadelphia. Besides serving as executive producer of World Café, Warren also contributes to Paste magazine and writes for two blogs: Some Velvet Blog and WXPN's All About The Music Blog.

To celebrate the 30th anniversary of World Cafe, we're looking back and posting playlists from each year of the show. As music has evolved over the years, so have our playlists, which have grown to reflect a much wider range of music than when we first set out.

It turned out to be one of the best years for music of the entire decade, with releases that remain indelible and influential. Let's rewind 25 years, to 1996.

In this episode, we're talking about the "sophomore slump" — or rather, the lack of one.

That case could easily be made for Nirvana, whose first album Bleach would pale in comparison to its follow-up, Nevermind. It sold over 30 million copies, made grunge a household name and turned Kurt Cobain into the planet's biggest rock star.

There's been a lot of talking recently. A lot of words. A lot of people talking, arguing, debating, shouting slogans at you. So today we present a giant playlist of songs with no words: 100 instrumental jams to clear your head. You can groove, you can surf, you can even "East St Louis Toodle-Oo."

Sometimes bass guitar can be an overlooked instrument. Sometimes it gets relegated to the background. But today, it's a 62-song playlist that's all about that bass. We asked our social followers "What is the greatest bass riff of all time?" and they delivered.

Title tracks often capture the mood, vibe and direction of an album.

Here at World Cafe, where music discovery is buried deep in our musical DNA, we play a lot of new music. As we look at the current musical landscape — through streaming services and public radio stations alike — we've noticed that music discovery is increasingly becoming genre-less. The best sounds from Americana, R&B, indie rock, classic rock, alt-rock (whatever that actually means anymore), hip-hop and singer-songwriters all have one thing in common: that regardless of the genre, the passion for music is driven by our love of discovery and our curiosity.

Sponsored by the Americana Music Association, the 20th annual Americana Music Festival & Conference features a broad range of music showcases from diverse musicians in alt-country, roots-rock, bluegrass, R&B, blues, folk and singer-songwriters, as well as dozens of daytime industry panels.

The XPoNential Music Festival, presented by Subaru, offers an unparalleled experience for music discovery. With a lineup of established and up-and-coming artists, the XPoNential Music Festival has been pleasing audiences of all ages for more than a decade at the Camden Waterfront in Camden, N.J.

Nobody can see the future. People can get really good at guessing, sure, but to predict what's going to happen next is hard.

America, The Playlist

Jul 3, 2019

Happy July Fourth from all of us here at World Cafe! In honor of the holiday, we pulled together an all American-made Independence Day playlist. It includes a handful of literal July Fourth classics by Bruce Springsteen, Aimee Mann, X, James Taylor, and Galaxie 500.

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