World Cafe

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

XPN2 - 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 the World Cafe through performances and interviews with celebrated and emerging artists.
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Paul Simon

Influential singer/songwriter Paul Simon’s 1986 Grammy award-winning album Graceland is one of the few records from that decade that made history.
To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the album, XPN’s David Dye presents a special show on that landmark disc with comments from Paul Simon about the inspiration behind Graceland and the process of making the album. Following -up on the documentary Under the African Skies, which came out earlier this year, Simon also looks at the controversies surrounding the making of Graceland. Simon shares that his growing interest in South African music in the ‘80s was the main inspiration for Graceland and, to achieve an authentic sound, he decided to record the album in South Africa using local musicians. Doing this, Simon explains, he found that he could escape the pressures of the industry to create “hits” and focus on his craft. However, Simon faced challenges while in South Africa due to Apartheid, and saw firsthand how the forced racial segregation and lack of black South African rights affected individual’s everyday lives. Simon said that, although he was welcomed by many South African musicians and the Musicians Union, he was met with an intensely hostile situation outside the studio. In this special 25th anniversary look back, Simon also discusses what he hoped to achieve with the album.

Paul Simon On World Cafe Simon's music can feel timeless even when it's filled with new ideas. His latest work, So Beautiful or So What, explores universal truths about spirituality, life and death.


Thanks to producers Paul Chuffo & Joshua Jackson of Joyride Media for putting together this show.
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