This week on the BIRN!

Tune in to birnCORE on tonight at 8:00 p.m. for a live broadcast from the Red Room @ Cafe 939 featuring London based artist Puma Blue (also known as Jacob Allen) and New York City’s Gabe Goodman. Both artists bring fresh and exciting sounds to the singer songwriter genre. The show starts at 8:00 p.m. and you can stream it here.

Wellington, New Zealand’s Graeme James is multi-talented folk artist with over 300,000 monthly spotify listeners. He makes a stop in Boston on his way across the US in support of his latest release, The Long Way Home. New England based singer and songwriter Will Orchard gets the show rolling. Listen to the show on Thursday, November 7 at 8:00 p.m. right here.

At a 18 years old, Emily Bear is already a celebrated pianist, composer and vocalist. Check out the exclusive BIRN interview with Emily on Friday, November 8 at 7:00 p.m. before her show at Cafe 939 that night. Tune in here.

Guitarist and vocalist, Aubrey Haddard is our featured artist on BIRN Alive this Saturday, November 9 at 4:00 p.m. EST. Listen to her live set and insightful interview on birn1 here.

The BIRN has a pair of tickets for you to win to see Kate Davis and Jesse Ruben live at Cafe 939 on Saturday, November 16. To win the tickets, send an email and your contact phone number to tickets@thebirn.com by Thursday, November 14 at 11:59 p.m. Make sure to have Kate and Jesse in the subject line. The winner will be chosen at random. Good luck!

We are very happy to announce that the fall 2019 birnCORE Live show will take place on Thursday, December 5 and will feature Boston and Portland based indy noise band, Weakened Friends. Tickets are $8 for students. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.

April 19: birnCORE Live featuring Nick Hakim with Danielle Ponder

ATO recording artist and Berklee alumnus Nick Hakim is the featured artist at the spring 2019 edition of birnCORE Live, a live music series that presents some of the most creative, cutting edge performers working in the industry today. Prior shows have featured Taylor Mcferrin, Kaki King and Margaret Glaspy.

This semester’s birnCORE Live takes place on Friday, April 19 at the Red Room at Cafe 939. Hakim blends experimentation and psychedelia with classic soul, and his solo debut album, Green Twins, was praised by Pitchfork as “full of life and energy, often operating at a fever pitch.”

Hakim is joined by Rochester, New York’s Danielle Ponder, a vocalist and songwriter whose voice ranks with the best working in the industry today.

Student tickets are $15 to this must see show and you can get them here. The show starts at 8:00 p.m. EDT.

Click here to listen to birnCORE!

Lily & Madeleine Live on the BIRN!

Tune in to the BIRN on Saturday, March 9 for two performances by, and a conversation with, duo Lily & Madeleine, kicking off with an appearance on BIRN Alive in the afternoon, followed by a live set from the Red Room at Cafe 939.

Lily and Madeleine Jurkiewicz create candid music with deep emotional and personal resonance. The sisters, who record as Lily & Madeleine, boldly explore what it means to be women in the 21st century, and aren’t afraid to use their music to call out injustices or double standards. This fearless approach has permeated their first three albums, which are full of insightful lyrics and thoughtful indie-pop.

On their fourth studio album, Canterbury Girls—named after Canterbury Park, located in their hometown of Indianapolis, Indiana—the sisters come into their own as women and musicians. That assertiveness reflects new geographic and professional realities. For starters, Lily and Madeleine—now 21 and 23, respectively—moved to New York City in early 2018. Also, instead of recording Canterbury Girls in Bloomington, Indiana, where they recorded their previous efforts, the pair headed to Nashville, Tennessee, to write and work with producers Daniel Tashian and Ian Fitchuk.

Continue reading “Lily & Madeleine Live on the BIRN!”

Show Review: Speedy Ortiz at the Sinclair – 11/27

I was really happy to catch this performance Tuesday night at the Sinclair. I got there early enough to hear the very first openers, Halfsour, a three piece classic indie rock band.  Front woman, Zoë Wyner, doubled on vocals and bass, speaking for the band but making it clear that talking in between songs was her least favorite part of being on stage. They were a pretty quirky little trio and had a great set, but their level of quirk was nothing in comparison to the next band, Palberta.

Palberta was peculiar and off beat, but completely on brand. All three members switched instruments multiple times which kept the audience on the edge of their seats (in a general admission standing room). They conversed with the audience like they were making weird small talk with a stranger in an elevator, but everyone laughed through the uncomfortableness and seemed to enjoy the bands personality and overall sound. Continue reading “Show Review: Speedy Ortiz at the Sinclair – 11/27”

Erin’s Prime Slice (11/25-12/1): Speedy Ortiz

Since this week will be cut short by Thanksgiving, I only had one prime slice pick: Speedy Ortiz’s newest album Twerp Verse. Although beginning the recording process all the way back in the fall of 2016, the band decided to rethink a lot after election day (for obvious reasons). As a band that prides themselves on releasing politically driven music from their very first project, Speedy Ortiz felt that they couldn’t release some of the tracks that had focused on more frivolous topics. The title “Twerp Verse” is a phrase coined by front woman Sade Dupius to describe “when a musician guests on a track and says something totally outlandish – like a Lil Wayne verse – but it becomes the most crucial part.” This album acts as one big “Twerp Verse” for Speedy Ortiz, holding some pretty substantial messages about the struggles faced in the current, skewed world we live in.

Continue reading “Erin’s Prime Slice (11/25-12/1): Speedy Ortiz”

Show Review: EZI at the Sinclair – 11/7

Filing in from around both sides of the sidewalk were mostly young girls excitedly anticipating the show at the Sinclair last Wednesday, November 7. Although I think the hype in the air was mainly for the headliner, MAX (best known for his song “Lights Down Low”), I was there to see the first opener, EZI. EZI is a younger artist who just released her first EP, Afraid of the Dark, this year. She is a former Nickelodeon star that rebranded herself after being selected as the very first artist signed to Steve Madden’s 5Towns Record label, and she’s been putting out some pretty awesome tunes ever since.

Continue reading “Show Review: EZI at the Sinclair – 11/7”

Show Review: Liz Phair at Royale

By Curtis Heimburger

Last night at 10:15 on the dot, Liz Phair took the stage during her fourth to last show of her tour, as thunderous applause filled the venue. This tour being a recognition of the 25th anniversary of her influential debut album Exile In Guyville, there was no shortage of old tunes as it made up almost half of the setlist. This tour was definitely one for her fans and they couldn’t have been happier.

Before her ’93 debut release, Liz was living and playing in Chicago. At the time, the indie rock scene was heavily male dominated, making her stand out from the crowd quite a bit. Exile In Guyville was an instant hit in the underground, selling just under half a million copies in only a few years. Soon after her success, labels started signing and recording more singer-songwriter type acts that might’ve been viewed as risky before. Even today her influence is still prevalent in bands such as Snail Mail and Soccer Mommy. Continue reading “Show Review: Liz Phair at Royale”

birnCORE Live featuring Margaret Glaspy at the Red Room on 10/20

Tickets are now on sale for birnCORE Live featuring ATO recording artist, Margaret Glaspy! birnCORE Live is the BIRN’s annual live music party hosted at the Red Room at Cafe 939. Past artists have included Kaki King, and Taylor McFerrin.

Glaspy will perform an intimate solo show in support of her latest EP, Born Yesterday. The new EP, is a bookend to her lauded 2016 debut LP, Emotions and Math (ATO Records). Emotions and Math was featured on many year-end lists from prominent publications when it was released in 2016, including the New York Times, NPR Music, Billboard, Mother Jones, and more. Glaspy toured the record intensely, playing countless shows throughout North America, Europe, and Asia.

Touring was the catalyst that led to the writing of the new songs. “I wrote these songs on the road, in my hotel, on the plane, and at soundcheck,” said Glaspy. “They were the product of the little time that I had to myself—three songs about different sides of love: love gone wrong, love gone right, and love at a distance.” Glaspy self-produced the EP, which frames these love stories in catchy choruses, dark harmony, and her ever-evolving sense of the electric guitar. Her finely tuned ear for production and tone shine on Born Yesterday.

birnCORE Live takes place on Saturday, October 20 at 8:00 p.m. Admission is $20, with student discounts available, and can be purchased here.

Celebrate College Radio Day with The BIRN

Stop by 7 Haviland on Friday, October 5 between noon and 3:00 p.m. to celebrate college radio day with the BIRN! We will be holding a raffle with prizes including: T-shirts, free tickets to the Red Room show on October 20, and a chance to win the grand prize of a live session at the BIRN!

We will have a table set up in front of 7 Haviland with pizza for anyone interested in learning more about The BIRN. You can’t miss out on these awesome prizes!

Tribute to Sal Cuevas Live from the Red Room

Tune in to birnCORE on Thursday, October 4 at 7:00 p.m. as Berklee faculty and students pay tribute to legendary Puerto Rican bass innovator Sal Cuevas at the Red Room at Cafe 939. They will perform music from Ray Barretto’s album Rican/Struction (on which Cuevas appeared) with special guest Rubén Rodríguez.

Rodríguez was born in New York City and grew up in East Harlem and Puerto Rico. He has been recognized as one of the best and hardest-working Latin music bass players in the United States. Rodríguez, whose father played classical guitar, taught himself the bass in junior high, then spent some time under the tutelage of esteemed bassist Victor Venegas. Continue reading “Tribute to Sal Cuevas Live from the Red Room”