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Christoper Owens on World Cafe | July 2, 2013

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  • Ryan McGinley/Courtesy of the artist

Formerly of the San Francisco rock band Girls, Christopher Owens now explores music and life on his own. Shortly after the duo released its second album, Father, Son, Holy Ghost, Owens announced that he was leaving to go solo. Released this past January, Lysandre is his first album recorded under his own name; it's a coming-of-age story for the singer, intertwined with hints of romance.

Here, Owens talks with WXPN's Michaela Majoun about the album's quiet nature; it's a gentler version of the '60s- and '70s-inspired music he'd been making with Girls since 2009. Several of Lysandre's songs are written in the same key, making the entire album feel like a unified piece. It also offers a revealing look into Owens' personal life and unconventional upbringing: At 16, he decided to leave a religious organization widely described as a cult.

Since then, Owens has been trying to find his own way, and he's used songwriting as a means of exploration. On this installment of World Cafe, hear him perform four raw and intimate songs from his latest album. (Link)


(( )) for interlude music

Hour 1

Luna “Waiting on a Friend” Close Cover Before Striking 
Big Star “September Gurls” Radio City
Girls “Honey Bunny” Father, Son, Holy Ghost 
((Dr. John "Revolution" Knocked Down))
Christopher Owens “Here We Go” Recorded Live for the World Cafe
Christopher Owens “New York City” Recorded Live for the World Cafe
Christopher Owens “A Broken Heart” Recorded Live for the World Cafe
Christopher Owens “Here We Go Again” Recorded Live for the World Cafe
((Girls "Summertime" Girls))
Divine Fits “Ain’t That The Way” Ain't That The Way/Chained To Love 
Thievery Corporation “The Numbers Game” Radio Retaliation 
The Rolling Stones “Hot Stuff” Black And Blue

Hour 2

Rhye “The Fall” Recorded Live at Le Poisson Rouge 
Mavis Staples “Can You Get to That?” One True Vine
Sly & The Family Stone “If You Want Me To Stay” Anthology 
Allen Stone “Say So” Allen Stone 
Electric Guest “This Head I Hold” Mondo
((Camera Obscura "Razzle Dazzle Rose" Let's Get Out of This Country))
Son Volt “The Picture” The Search 
Jason Isbell “Stockholm” Southeastern 
Drive By Truckers “Outfit” Decoration Day
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club “Let The Day Begin” Specter at the Feast
((Los Campesinos "You! Me! Dancing!" Hold On Now Youngster))
Yo La Tengo “Ohm” Fade
World Party “Ship Of Fools” Private Revolution 
Mikal Cronin “Weight” MCII
Liz Phair “Help Me Mary” Exile in Guyville 
Joseph Arthur “Saint Of Impossible Causes” The Ballad Of Boogie Christ
((Delta Spirit "Ode To Sunshine" Ode To Sunshine))