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.

Lydia Loveless, Julie Byrne, Eva Salina, Sera Cahoone and Western Centuries are just a handful of the 19 musicians featured on the latest compilation

You'd think that people would have had enough of silly love songs? Not a chance. For Valentine's Day this year, we've modeled our love songs playlist after The Magnetic Fields' classic 69 Love Songs, a collection of, well, 69 songs about love songs written by Stephin Merritt.

Folk and blues guitarist and singer-songwriter Chris Smither released his debut album in 1970, the beginning of an exceptional and influential body of work. A gifted songwriter and live performer, Smither was born and raised in New Orleans, and emerged out of the Boston folk music scene in the '60s.

As The Doors sing: "Summer's almost gone ... the winter's comin' on." Here at the World Cafe, the changing seasons are making us feel all kinds of feelings. Looking ahead to Labor Day Weekend — the unofficial end of the summer –- we hear the sounds of kids going back to school with new clothes and backpacks, and linger on memories of relaxation in the sunshine, vacation time burned and loves that were lost and found.

In July 2015, the music industry moved its formal release day for new records from Tuesdays to Fridays. These days, though, it seems like almost every day is New Music Day. Keeping track of all this new music can be a challenge, but that's why we love being music fans.

Just under two years ago, the Montreal singer-songwriter Leif Vollebekk released North Americana, a warmly produced collection of soulfully tinged indie-folk songs all cut to tape.

Now comes a devastatingly beautiful new song, "Elegy," from Vollebekk's forthcoming album, Twin Solitude. With its downtempo, contemplative mix of simple piano chords, flourishes of acoustic bass and a metronomic drumbeat, the song grabs you by the heart and pulls you into its hypnotic whorl of melancholia.

During AmericanaFest last month, NPR Music's Ann Powers and contributor Jewly Hight got together with musicians at Nashville's historic Union Station Hotel for a series of intimate "Americana Alphabet" performances.

After traveling all the way from West Africa, Bombino added some international psychedelic rock 'n' roll flavor to the SXSW Radio Day Stage in Austin last week. The incredible guitarist has found a worldwide audience thanks to albums like 2013's Dan Auerbach-produced Nomad.