On this episode of Postcards, Japanese American musician Rachel Andie takes us on a tour through the historic streets of Philadelphia.
"We have a lot of hardship in a lot of ways throughout our communities," Andie, who is now New Zealand based, told Music 101.
"Which has led to lots of art forms like music, fine arts, dance and skateboarding. There’s a whole musical and artistic community which I love sharing from Philadelphia.
"Lots of musicians choose to live here and play music all the time. There’s such a supportive community and genre crossovers."
In her own words, Andie talks us through her hometown memories.
SNACKTIME is a big brass band from Philadelphia which came to be during the pandemic. They wanted to give music to the people, so they gathered in these huge parks in Philly and invited everyone to come out socially distanced.
It’s an upbeat, brass band. There’s even kind of hip hop mixed in there. They’ve become well known around the country and are the opening band for the Philadelphia basketball team the 76ers.
It’s one of the songs, which when you look out at the crowd, you can see everyone just having the best time.
Hezekiah Jones is my favourite folk band in Philadelphia. They’re from an area called Delaware Country (or Delco) where musicians such as Kurt Vile and Alex G have come out of.
Hezekiah Jones represents the creative culture of the Philadelphia folk scene. They’re also a staple at the Philadelphia Folk Festival, which is the oldest continuously running festival in Philadelphia and just marked its 60th year.
But last year was the first year in 60 years where it didn’t happen, so the whole folk community came together to raise funds to ensure that it can continue in 2024 and beyond.
There’s also a festival run by Hezekiah Jones called Robin and Beth Fest – a communal festival where the whole Kurt Vile family comes along, as well as lots of Delco and Philly folk natives.
The song I’ve chosen is the latest Hezekiah Jones release.
Kayla Childs (artist name Black Buttafly) has toured all over the world with artists like Lauryn Hill, but has decided to start her own project.
She’s one of my favourite Philadelphia musicians. This is the first single from that project and I’m excited to hear her future releases.
There’s a very strong bond of skaters in Philly and it’s been this way for decades – and now there’s an amazing rapper and producer in this community called Qthree.
He worked on a song with a producer from Japan named Budamunk for a project called Peace of Mind. He then toured Japan, which is a very big deal coming from Germantown in Philadelphia.
Right now in Philadelphia, there’s a big eruption in the skate scene because the police took away the main stake park.
The skatepark Muni was featured in the latest issue of Thrasher. This song is an ode to the stake community.
One of my favourite jazz-fusion projects in Philadelphia is Trap Rabbit. They’re good friends of mine. It’s a two-piece of drums and keys made up of Arjun Dube and Logan Roth.
Both musicians have toured throughout the world. They are the first band I met in Philadelphia when I was a teenager. We’ve had so many different musical experiences together and Logan was the original keyboardist in my band. It’s amazing seeing how far they’ve gone.
Finally, one of my favourite memories is watching a band called Fox Warren, which is one of Andy Shauf’s projects. It’s a very special thing to be able to share this side of Andy Shauf many people might not know.
Rachel's Postcards picks:
Hezekiah Jones – Having a time machine isn’t a good enough reason to time travel
SNACKTIME – Gotta Get Funk
Black Buttafly – Imagine
Qthree, Budamunk – Peace
Trap Rabbit – This was once out of shape (featuring Maxfield Gast)
Foxwarren – Sunset Canyon
This is the second in our new series Postcards on Music 101.
You can listen to the first episode, where Wellington-based composer Vasileios Vrakas sits down with Maggie Tweedie and takes us on a journey through his early life in Athens.