The PopCulteer
March 8, 2024

Hooray, we have the playlist for today’s new episode of MIRRORBALL on The AIR, so let’s just jump into a radio-heavy end-of-the-week post, shall we?

The AIR is PopCult‘s sister radio station. You can hear our shows on The AIR website, or just click on the embedded player found elsewhere on this page.

Friday at 2 PM on The AIR, Mel Larch devotes her hour of Disco to the legendary record label, Philadelphia International. Founded by the songwriting team, Gamble & Huff, and producer Thom Bell, this label was so influential that the string-laden style of classic Disco came to be known as “The Philadelphia Sound.”

With a roster than included MFSB, Patti Labelle, Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes, The Three Degrees, Teddy Pendergrass and many more, Philadelphia International ruled the charts for years in the 70s and early 80s.

Their sound was so sought after that Elton John imitated it on his single, “Philadelphia Freedom,” and David Bowie was so enamoured of their sound that he recorded much of his Young Americans album at Sigma Sound Studios, which was where most of the label’s Disco hits were created.

In this hour, Mel slows down the beats per minute and cranks up the sweet soul grooves of the classic Philadelphia International sound. Check out the playlist…


MFSB and The Three Degrees “T.S.O.P.”
The Intruders “I’ll Always Love My Mama”
Dexter Wanzel “Stargazer”
The Futures “Party Time Man”
The Jones Girls “Let’s Celebrate (Sittin’ on Top of the World)”
Teddy Pendergrass “If You Know Like I Know”
Dee Dee Sharp Gamble “Easy Money”
McFadden & Whitehead “Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now”
Lou Rawls “You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine”
Billy Paul “Your Song”
The O’Jays “Love Train”
Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes Feat. Teddy Pendergrass “The Love I Lost”
The Three Degrees “Year Of Decision”

You can hear MIRRORBALL every Friday at 2 PM, with replays throughout the following week Monday at 9 AM and Tuesday at 1 PM and a mini-marathon Saturday nights at 9 PM

At 3 PM we whip out an encore of the 2022 April Fool’s episode of Sydney’s Big Electric Cat. That was the year that Sydney Fileen decided to throw us a curveball. On realizing that this episode of her show would debut on April Fool’s Day, she also decided to bend the rules and present two hours of the goofiest New Wave music ever, in a mixtape form. Sydney opens the show with Weird Al and Barnes & Barnes, and proceeds to present genuine New Wave novelties mixed with offbeat covers, and a few parodies, recreations and ringers in the mix.

It’s all in the spirit of fun, so check out this playlist…

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Weird Al Yankovic “Dare To Be Stupid”
Barnes & Barnes “Fish Heads”
The Vandals “National Brotherhood Week”
The Units “Bugboy”
Captain Sensible “Wot”
Cyndi Lauper “He’s So Unusual”
DEVO “Speed Racer”
Divine “You Think You’re A Man”
Tim Finn “I See Red”
Big Daddy “Once In A Lifetime”
Julie Brown “Homecoming Queen’s Got A Gun”
Big Daddy “Safety Dance”
Weird Al “You Make Me”
Neil “Hole In My Shoe”
Hazel O’Connor “EE-I-ADDIO”
Martini Ranch “How Does The Laboring Man…”
Mystery Music
Wall of Voodoo “Exercise”
Violent Femmes/The Dickeies “Eep Op Ork Ah Ah”
Lene Lovich “I Think We’re Alone Now”
Laibach “Sympathy For The Devil”
Little Nell “Beauty Queen”
Neil “Lentil Nightmare”
Nina Hagen Band “TV Glotzer”
Robert Fripp “You Burn Me Up”
The Stranglers “Old Codger”
Celia & The Mutations “Mean To Me”
The Bad Shepards “White Riot”
Big Daddy “Whip It”
The Dickies “If Stuart Could Talk”
Oingo Boing “Goodbye Goodbye”

Sydney’s Big Electric Cat is produced at Haversham Recording Institute in London, and can be heard every Friday at 3 PM, with replays Saturday afternoon,  Monday at 7 AM, Tuesday at 8 PM, Wednesday at Noon and Thursday at 10 AM, exclusively on The AIR. Classic episodes can be heard Sunday morning at 10 AM.

That’s what’s new on The AIR Friday, and that is this week’s PopCulteer. Check back for our regular features every day.