Here’s a few of WPKN’s programmers’ picks for 2023’s best music


Bob Anderson: “A Little Bit Of Everything”


The Mommyheads: Coney Island Kid (Mommyheads Music)

Bettye Lavette: LaVette! (Jay-Vee)

Dylan Dunlap: 5150 (E Magnolia)

Peter Case: “Wandering Days” (Sunset Blvd)

Rhiannon Giddens: You’re The One (Nonesuch)

Black Pumas: Chronicles of a Diamond (ATO)

Roger Chapman: Life in the Pond (Ruf)

Moby (feat. Brie O’Banion): “We’re Going Wrong” (Always Centered At Night)

Stephen Ulrich: Music From This American Life (Barbes)

Daisy The Great: Tough Kid EP (S-Curve)

Bobby Rush: All My Love For You (Deep Rush)


Steve di Costanzo: “Radio Base Camp”

Albums –

Arooj Aftab, Vijay Iyer, Shahzad Ismaily: Love in Exile (Verve)

Caroline Polachek: Desire, I Want to Turn Into You (Perpetual Novice)

Corinne Bailey Rae: Black Rainbows (Black Rainbows Music/Thirty Tigers)

Fatoumata Diawara: London Ko (Montuno/Wagram)

Jessie Ware: That! Feels Good! (EMI)

Lana Del Rey: Did You Know That There’s A Tunnel Under Ocean Blvd (Interscope)

Lonnie Holley: Oh Me Oh My (Jagjaguwar)

LP Giobbi: Light Places (Counter)

Mbuso Khoza: Ifa Lomkhono (Ropeadope)

Melenas: Ahora (Trouble in Mind)

Alec Cumming: “Snap, Crackle, POP!”

Albums –

The Lemon Twigs: Everything Harmony (Captured Tracks)

Everything But the Girl: Fuse (Buzzin’ Fly)

Hello Mary: Hello Mary (Frenchkiss)

Jenny Lewis: Joy’All (Blue Note)

Ian Hunter: Defiance Part 1 (Sun)

­Juniper: She Steals Candy (Fabcom!)

The Ekphrastics: Special Delivery (Harriet)

The Feelies: Some Kinda Love – Performing the Music of the Velvet Underground (Bar None)

The John Sally Ride: The Other Women (Heartpunch)

The Rolling Stones: Hackney Diamonds (Polydor)

Singles –

Barbara Manning: “Why, Why Won’t You Love Me Back” (Ba Da Bing!)

Kara Jackson: “pawnshop” (September)

The Pretenders: “Let the Sun Come In” (Parlophone)

Hannah Jadagu: “What You Did” (Sub Pop Records)

Joy Oladokun, Noah Kahan: “We’re All Gonna Die” (Verve Forecast)

Similar Kind: “Face To Face” (Factory Underground)

Sheer Mag: “Playing Favorites” (Third Man)

Ben Folds: “Winslow Gardens” (New West)

Dele Sosimi and The Estuary 21: “Mo Ṣe B’ọ́lá Tán” (Wah Wah 45s)

Beck: “Thinking About You” (Fonograph)


Del: “In Transition”

Albums –

Krasno Moore Project: Book Of Queens (Concord Jazz)

John Mellencamp: Orpheus Descending (Republic)

Raul Malo: Say Less (Mondo Mundo)

Hazlerigg Brothers: Synchronicity: An Interpretation of the album by The Police (Outer Marker)

Marty Stuart & his Fabulous Superlatives: Altitude (Snakefarm)

Juliana Hatfield: Sings ELO (American Laundromat)

Black Pumas: Chronicles Of A Diamond (ATO)

Rhiannon Giddens: You’re The One (Nonesuch)

Me’Shell NdegéOcello: The Omnichord Real Book (Blue Note)

Kevin Gallagher: “Digging In The Dirt”

Singles –

Eric Bibb: “Ridin'” (Stony Plain)

Rod MacDonald: “Cry Freedom” (Blue Flute)

Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit: “If You Insist” (Southeastern)

Spoon: “Sugar Babies” (Matador)

Tracy Nelson: “Your Funeral And My Trial” (BMG)

Betty Lavette: “Hard To Be A Human” (Jay-Vee)

Jake Klar: “Driving Home Through the Country” (Jake Klar)

Joy Oladokun: “Black Car” (Verve Forecast)

Natalie Merchant: “Tower of Babel” (Nonesuch)

Los Ángeles Azules, Panteón Rococó (feat. Carlos Santana): “A Todos Los Rumberos” (UMG)

Jazz Albums

Yussef Dayes: Black Classical Music (Nonesuch)

Christian McBride’s New Jawn: Prime (Mack Avenue)

Allison Miller: Rivers in Our Veins (The Royal Potato Family)

Snazzback: Ruins Everything (Worm)

Bobby Sanabria Multiverse Big Band: Vox Humana (Jazzheads)

Kurt Rosenwinke Group: The Remedy (Live at the Village Vanguard) (ArtistShare)

Henri Texier: An Indian’s Life (Label Bleu)

ErikTruffaz: Rollin’ (Blue Note, France)

Jacob Manz: Groove Connection (ACT)

Artemis: In Real Time (Blue Note)

Kenn Greenquist: “Dawn Patrol” & “Incunabula”

Singles –

Sheneta Nicole: “Love Languages” (Sheneta Nicole’s Music)

Ryan Gosling: “I’m Just Ken” (Atlantic)

Corrinne Bailey Rae: “New York Transit Queen” (Black Rainbows Music/Thirty Tigers)

bar italia: “que suprise” (Matador)

Swayzak: “Redfarm (Abbey Road 2023 edit)” (Lapsus)

Car Seat Headrest: “Bodys – Live at Brooklyn Steel” (Matador)

Fatback Brother Bill Curtis: “Dance Girl” (BGP)

Black Pumas: “Sauvignon” (ATO)

Al Green: “Perfect Day” (Fat Possum)

Thee Oh Sees: “Goon” (in The Red)

Albums –

Too Much Joy: All these Fucking Feelings – Deluxe Edition (Propeller Sound)

Corrinne Baily Rae: Black Rainbows (Black Rainbows Music/Thirty Tigers)

Marne Stern: The Comeback Kid (Joyful Noise)

Hamell on Trial: Bring the Kids (Saustex)

The Courettes: Boom! Dynamite (Damaged Goods)

Cleo Sol: Gold (Forever Living Originals)

Dinner Party: Enigmatic Society (Empire)

André 3000: New Blue Sun (Epic)

Bloodshot Bill: Psych-O-Billy (Goner)

Emeli Sandé: How Were We To Know (Chrysalis)


Bob Johnson: “Second Saturday Magazine”

Eliza Gilkyson: Home (Realiza)

Mary Lee Kortes: Will Anybody Know That I Was Here? The Songs Of Beulah Rowley (Lakeside Lounge)

Rod MacDonald: Rants and Romance (Blue Flute)

Nicole Zuraitus: How Love Begins (Nicole Z Music)

Sufjan Stevens: Javelin (Asthmatic Kitty)

Carla Patullo: So She Howls (The Soundry)

Tianna Esperanza: Terror (BMG)

Boygenius: The Record (Interscope)

Feist: Multitudes (Polydor)

PJ Harvey: I Inside The Old Year Dying (Partisan)


Rich Kaminsky: “Off-Beat”

The Bouncing Souls: Ten Stories High (Pure Noise)

Dead Billionaires: Disaster Preparedness Coloring Book (Possum Lick Farms)

Juniper: She Steals Candy (Confidential/Fabcom)

Los Fusiles: A Mano Armada (Family Spree)

The Pink Spiders: Freakazoid (Pure Noise)

Psychotic Youth: Happy Songs (Kool Kat)

Shonen Knife: Our Best Place (Good Charamel)

The Whiffs: Scratch ‘N’ Sniff (Dig!)

Wicked Bears: Underwater (Wiretap)

The Young Rochelles: Kicked to the Curb (Sounds Rad)


Martha Willette Lewis: “The Flux Capacitor”

Young Fathers: Heavy Heavy (Ninja Tune)

PJ Harvey: I Inside The Old Year Dying (Partisan )

Gretchen Parlato & Lionel Loueke: Lean In (Edition)

Black Pumas: Chronicles Of a Diamond (ATO)

Elisapie: Inuktitut (Bonsound)

Witch: Zango (Desert Daze)

TV Girl: Grapes Upon The Vine (Blissful Serenity Industries)

Me’Shell NdegéOcello: The Omnichord Real Book (Blue Note)

Corinne Bailey Rae: Black Rainbows (Black Rainbows Music/Thirty Tigers)

Jeremy Dutcher: Motewolonuwok (Secret City)


Michelle Morgan: “Love & Communication”

Singles –

Wednesday: “Bull Believer” (Dead Oceans)

Sir Chloe: “Leash” (Atlantic)

Lael Neale: “I Am The River” (Sub Pop)

Billie Marten: “God Above” (Fiction)

cumgirl8: “Cicciolina” (4AD)

Kevin Morby: “Triumph” (Dead Oceans)

Bully: “All This Noise” (Sub Pop)

The Drive: “Spells” (The Drive)

Slothrust: “Magic Glow” (Dangerbird)

Kalu & The Electric Joint: “Garden of Eden” (Spaceflight)

Albums –

Pile: All Fiction (Exploding in Sound)

Sweeping Promises: Good Living Is Coming For You (Feel It)

Tropical Fuck Storm: Submersive Behavior (Joyful Noise)

Anna B Savage: In|FLUX (City Slang)

Palehound: Eye on the Bat (Polyvinyl)

Mitski: The Land Is Inhospitable and So Are We (Dead Oceans)

Feist: Multitudes (Polydor)

Sam Hansell: Inopia (no label, unsigned)

Cherry Glazerr: I Don’t Want You Anymore (Secretly Canadian)

Caroline Rose: The Art of Forgetting (New West)


Martha Nachman: “The Music Never Stopped”

Albums –

The Nude Party: Rides On (New West)

Jon Batiste: World Music Radio (Verve/Interscope)

Grace Potter: Mother Road (Fantasy)

Hiss Golden Messenger: Jump For Joy (Merge)

Deer Tick: Emotional Contracts (ATO)

Cat Power: Cat Power Sings Dylan: The 1966 Royal Albert Hall Concert (Domino)

Dave Matthews Band: Walk Around The Moon (Bama Rags)

Shakey Graves: Movie Of The Week (Dualtone)

Various Artists: A Song For Leon A Tribute To Leon Russell (Primary Wave Legends)

Kurt Vile: Back To Moon Beach (Verve)

Kevin Patrick: “So Many Records So Little Time”

Singles –

Afrojack: “Polkadots (Space Ducks Remix)” (Wall)

Gina Birch: “I Play My Bass Loud” (Third Man)

Lili Chan: “Tell Me / Hakari” (Colorize/Enhanced Music)

Elkka: “DJ Friendly” (Ninja Tune)

Hot Chip, yunè pinku “Fire Of Mercy” (Domino)

James Hype, Major Lazer: “Number 1” (Stereohype)

Lou Reed: “Open Invitation” (RCA)

Rolling Stones: “Angry” (Polydor)

Skrillex, Fred again.., Flowdan: “Rumble” (OWSLA/Atlantic)

Subatomic Sound System, Lee Scratch Perry, Screechy Dan: “Lee Scratch Perry Is The Dub Organizer (New Ark Mix)” (Subatomic Sound)

Albums –

100 gecs: 10000 gecs (Dog Show/Atlantic)

Christine And The Queens: Paranoïa, Angels, True Love (Because Music)

Hollie Cook: Happy Hour In Dub (Merge)

Four Tet: Live At Alexandra Palace, London 8th And 9th May 2019 (Text)

Major Lazer: Piano Republik (Mad Decent/Columbia)

Skrillex: Quest For Fire (OWSLA/Atlantic)

Sparks: The Girl Is Crying In Her Latte (Island)

Suede: Autofiction Expanded (BMG)

Tiësto: Drive (Atlantic)

Tiësto: New Years Eve VIP (Warner Music)


Rick Petrone: “The Jazz Sound”

Albums –

Joshua Redman: Where Are We (Blue Note)

Mike Le Donne, Eric Alexander, Jeremy Pelt, Vincent Herring, Kenny Washington, Peter Washington: The Heavy Hitters (Cellar Music)

Artemis: In Real Time (Blue Note)

Eddie Henderson: Witness to History (Smoke Sessions)

Louis Hayes: Exactly Right (Savant)

Dan Wilson: Things Eternal (Mack Avenu)

Luiz Millan: Brazilian Match (Jazz Station) Jane Bunnett and Maqueque: Playing With Fire (Linus Entertainment)

Jane Bunnett and Maqueque: Playing With Fire (Linus Entertainment)

Terry Gibbs Legacy Band: The Terry Gibbs Songbook (Whaling City Sound)

Emmet Cohen: Masters Legacy Series Volume 5 Featuring Houston Person (Bandstand)

Valerie Richardson: “Radio Something”

Tracks –

Adeem the Artist: “My America” (Four Quarters)

The Courettes: “Boom! Dynamite” (Damaged Goods)

Hamell on Trial: “Hippy Shake” (Saustex)

Kristin Hersh: “Ms. Haha” (Fire)

Lonnie Holley and Sharon von Etten: “None of Us Have But A Little While” (Jagjaguwar)

Kara Jackson: “Why Does the Earth Give Us People to Love?” (September)

Margo Price: “Been to the Mountain” (Loma Vista)

Allison Russell: “Eve Was Black” (Birds of Chicago)

Cécile McLorin Salvant: “Mélusine” (Nonesuch)

Leo Sidran: “When the Mask Comes Off” (Bonsai Music)

Albums –

bar italia: Tracey Denim (Matador)

Boygenius: The Record (Interscope)

Hamell On Trial: Bring The Kids (Saustex)

Hauschka: Philanthropy (City Slang)

Kristin Hersh: Clear Pond Road (Fire)

Lonnie Holley: Oh Me Oh My (Jagjaguwar)

Allison Russell: The Returner (Fantasy)

Cécile McLorin Salvant: Mélusine (Nonesuch)

Ali Sethi & Nicolas Jaar: Intiha (Other People)

Yo La Tengo: This Stupid World (Matador)

Rob Silber: “Rock Therapy”

Albums –

Ian Hunter: Defiance Pt. I (Sun)

The Flashcubes: Pop Masters (Big Stir)

Samantha Fish & Jesse Dayton: Death Wish Blues (Rounder)

Jethro Tull: RökFlöte (Inside Out)

Sophie B. Hawkins: Free Myself (Lightyear)

The Wood Brothers: Heart Is The Hero (Honey Jar)

Graham Parker: Last Chance To Learn The Twist (Big Stir)

The Rolling Stones: Hackney Diamonds (Polydor)

Israel Nash: Ozarker (Desert Folklore)

Joan Osborne: Nobody Owns You (Womanly Hips)


howard thompson – ‘PURE’

Albums –

Bilk: Bilk (Scruff Of The Neck)

Angel Corpus Christi: Bewitched (A&R Ent)

The Courettes: Boom! Dynamite (An Introduction to the Fabulous Courettes) (Damaged Goods)

The Drift Institute: Damages And Their Slices (Pensaments Sònics)

Hamell On Trial: Bring The Kids (Saustex)

Ian Hunter: Defiance Pt. 1 (Sun)

Mary Lee Kortes: Will Anybody Know That I Was Here? – The Songs of Beulah Rowley (Lakeside Lounge)

Lydia Loveless: Nothing’s Gonna Stand In My Way Again (Honey, You’re Gonna Be Late)

Dan Montgomery: Cast Iron Songs and Torch Ballads (Fantastic Yes)

MX-80 Sound: Better Than Life (Klanggallerie)


Amy Wachtel, The Night Nurse: “Rockers Arena”

Albums –

Black Pumas: Chronicles of a Diamond (ATO)

Burning Spear: No Destroyer (Burning Music)

Easy Star All-Stars: Ziggy Star Dub (Easy Star)

Hempress Sativa: CHARKA (Conquering Lion)

Stephen Marley: Old Soul (Ghetto Youths International)

Samory I: Strength (Easy Star)

Various Artists: If You Ask Me To…Victor Axelrod Productions for Daptone Records (Daptone)

Various Artists: Rebirth of the Cool Ruler (Greensleeves/VP)

Various Artists: Still Beating Down Babylon – Junior Byles Tribute (DubShot)

Various Artists: We Remember Bob Andy (VP)


Mike Zito:

Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit: Weathervanes (Southeastern)

Lori McKenna: 1988 (CN)

Show Of Hands: The Dog Show Sessions (Hands On Music)

Raye Zaragoza: Hold That Spirit (Rebel River)

Various Artists: More Than A Whisper: Celebrating The Music Of Nanci Griffith (Rounder)

Fanny Lumsden: Hey Dawn (Cooking Vinyl, Australia)

Steep Canyon Rangers: Morning Shift (Yep Roc)

Luke Laird, Lori McKenna & Barry Dean: The Songwriter Tapes Vol. 1 (CN)

Tommy Emmanuel: Accomplice Two (CGP)

Leon Russell: Signature Songs (Dark Horse)