June 2017

Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of our most trusted music aficionados joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Patrick Bowman!

In case you missed, it here's what Patrick played: 

SZA, "Go Gina" - New Jersey based R&B songstress SZA has been around for a minute on LA's TDE with plenty of great features on songs from that label's roster of top notch MCs (Kendrick Lamar, Schoolboy Q, Isaiah Rashad) and also dropping two highly regarded EPs. Her big debut record Ctrl is a massive expansion of her previous creative vision, pushing her influences, such as vulnerable indie rock and damaged art pop, outside of the usual prerequisites for an R&B record. "Go Gina" , the Martin crbbing mid album track, is a confident merging of old and new R&B worlds, as SZA shows off her song writing chops and pop sensibilities.

Smino, "Father Son Holy Smoke" - The St. Louis based rapper, who  could be considered in the same creative orbit as Chicago Mcs Noname and Chance the Rapper, dropped his heady, acid funk grooving debut full length blkswn back in March. Compared to many of the other slower, late night vibing tracks on the album,  "Father Son Holy Smoke" shows Smino switching into a higher gear, laying down rapid fire verses over the best beat on the album while still maintaining the cool air of late night, post party come down.

We just got the word that Farm Aid is returning to Western Pennsylvania for 2017. The show will take place September 16 at KeyBank Pavilion in Burgettstown and will feature Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young, Dave Matthews with Tim Reynolds, Jack Johnson, The Avett Brothers, Sheryl Crow, Jamey Johnson, Blackberry Smoke, Valerie June, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, and Insects vs Robots. More artists are expected to be announced later on.

Tickets will go on sale to the general public on Friday, June 23.

This will be the second time that Farm Aid has taken place in Burgettstown (it was also there 15 years ago), and it's only the third occasion that the festival has happened in Pennsylvania (it was located in Hershey in 2012). Pennsylvania is behind only Illinois as the state that has hosted the festival most often (Farm Aid has been held in Illinois five times since its 1985 debut; including the upcoming event, PA is tied with Virginia as the host site most frequently).

Pennsylvania was chosen as the Farm Aid site again in part because agriculture is the Commonwealth’s leading economic enterprise. It is also home to 58,200 farms and is the birthplace of organic agriculture in the United States.

"Family farm agriculture is the heart of Pennsylvania," Farm Aid President and Founder Willie Nelson said. "What’s happening in western Pennsylvania and the region shows us that we can count on family farmers to strengthen our communities and connect people. Whether we live in rural or urban places, food — and music — brings us all together."

Keep listening to WYEP and checking our website, Twitter, and Facebook to find out how you can win tickets to the festival from us!

Below are the 5 key tracks that you need to know from The Smiths.


A vital voice of the 1980's music scene. The Smiths were Morrissey, Johnny Marr, Mike Joyce, and Andy Rourke. The band was nominated in both 2014 and 2015 for induction into the Rock hall of fame.


  • Song: "A Rush & a Push & the Land Is Ours"

  • Album: Strangeways, Here We Come
  • Year: 1987
  • Comment: Remastered version of this classic.



  • Song: "Sheila Take a Bow"

  • Album: Single
  • Year: 1987
  • Comment: This track reached #10 in UK in 1987



  • Song: "Ask"

  • Album: Single
  • Year: 1986
  • Comment: features Kirsty MacColl on backing vocals



  • Song: "What Difference Does It Make?"

  • Album: The Smiths
  • Year: 1984
  • Comment: There are 2 verisons of the single, one on their debut and one from the John Peel show recording



  • Song: "How Soon Is Now?"

  • Album: Meat Is Murder
  • Year: 1984
  • Comment: B-side to a 1984 single that was eventually released 2 years later as a single



Catch Key Tracks every weekday during the Midday Mix at 1 PM on 91.3 WYEP.


Friday mornings on WYEP, Chef Bill Fuller (Corporate Chef for big Burrito) joins Cindy Howes at 7:30am for Pairings! Bill & Cindy challenge each other to pair up your favorite music with matching menus. Let’s see what they came up with this week. Listen to the audio:

Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of WYEP’s trusted music experts joins me (Cindy Howes) on The Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Jess Phaneuf from WUMB in Boston!

In case you missed it, here's what Jess played:

Dolly Parton, "The Story" - Brandi Carlile is celebrating 10 years of her album The Story and has an all star cast of musicians to cover each track on Cover Stories. Not only does this album of unique covers captivate, but it's also for a great cause - proceeds benefit War Child UK.

Dan Auerbach, "Shine On Me" - One half of The Black Keys, Auerbach has really established himself as a solo artist at this point and his new album sounds quite solid with Mark Knopfler assisting on this particular track.



It's no secret in Pittsburgh that Mayor Bill Peduto is a big music fan. Many of us have seen him out at concerts -- sometimes in the audience, occasionally on stage, and he's even been known to drop backstage at WYEP's annual Summer Music Festival. So our own Morning Mix host Cindy Howes decided to be a facilitator, seeing if she could put the mayor together with a major artist. (It's like her Pairings feature, I guess, but instead of matching "music & menus," she's matching "music & mayors.")


It all started after President Trump namechecked Pittsburgh in his speech announcing he was withdrawing the U.S. from the Paris Climate Agreement. Mayor Peduto issued multiple responses to this reference to our city, including this one:



Peduto's tweets drew reaction from a number of musicians, including retweets related to his comments by Rosanne Cash and Benmont Tench of Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers. Also a reply from Aimee Mann:



This is where Cindy joined the story. She jumped in to make a virtual introduction between Mann and Mayor by way of a musical suggestion:



 And it turned out that Mayor Peduto was on board with this notion:



 To which Aimee Mann tweeted:



We certainly have abundant evidence of Mayor Peduto's tambourine skills. Here he is with the local group Lohio:

And Donora tweeted a pic of Peduto with them:


And, of course, we all likely recall what happened with Guster last year. After Guster performed in an alley by a dumpster, Peduto tweeted about it and the band tweeted back, Peduto later joined us on WYEP to announce that Guster would be performing at the 2016 Three Rivers Arts Festival. The next day, Guster told Peduto that he was going to perform with them, and the mayor conditionally agreed as long as they wrote a song about Pittsburgh.


And then it happened:

(The mayor walks on stage for his incredible spoken-word part beginning at 5:45 in.)


So will the mayor actually play tambourine with Aimee Mann? Time will tell. As of right now, Mann has a string of concert dates booked in June and July -- before she heads to tour Europe in the fall -- but nothing in the Pittsburgh area. We'll keep our eye on the situation and let you know if any concert opportunities emerge. Because what other major city has a mayor as musically plugged-in and as cool as ours?

Friday mornings on WYEP, Chef Bill Fuller (Corporate Chef for big Burrito) joins Cindy Howes at 7:30am for Pairings! Bill & Cindy challenge each other to pair up your favorite music with matching menus. Let’s see what they came up with this week. Listen to the audio: