WXPN Radio

The premier guide for new and significant artists in rock, blues, and folk - including NPR-syndicated World Cafe

XPN2 - Jingle Jams

XPN's own Kris Kringle, (Robert Drake) is presenting a unique mix of seasonal songs celebrating both the holiday and winter seasons.

World Cafe Archives

Join the World Cafe through performances and interviews with celebrated and emerging artists.

XPoNential Radio


The Heart of XPN

From the tens of thousands of titles in its music library, WXPN asked you, our listeners to vote for the 885 quintessential XPN songs. These are the tracks that are at the heart of the XPN listening experience. The ones we could not be without.

View the 2008 list of the 885 Essential XPN Songs
(Printable PDF File)

The Final 885 Essential XPN Songs
(2008 Countdown)

201John PrineIllegal Smile Buy
202The Ting TingsShut Up And Let Me Go Buy
203Slo Mo Featuring Mic WreckaMy Buzz Comes Back Buy
204The B-52'SPlanet Claire Buy
205Zero 7Destiny Buy
206Band Of HorsesIs There A Ghost Buy
207Aimee MannFreeway Buy
208Jeff BuckleyLover, You Should Have Come Over Buy
209Kate BushRunning Up That Hill Buy
210Lily AllenSmile Buy
211REMLosing My Religion Buy
212Bruce SpringsteenRosalita (Come Out Tonight) Buy
213Tegan And SaraBack In Your Head Buy
214Nicole AtkinsMaybe Tonight Buy
215Boz ScaggsLoan Me A Dime Buy
216The Hold SteadyStuck Between Stations Buy
217Fountains Of WayneStacy'S Mom Buy
218MgmtTime To Pretend Buy
219Jane SiberryEverything Reminds Me Of My Dog Buy
220The Flaming LipsDo You Realize?? Buy
221Tegan And SaraWalking With A Ghost Buy
222Tom WaitsStep Right Up Buy
223James HunterPeople Gonna Talk Buy
224Richard & Linda ThompsonWall Of Death Buy
225RadioheadKarma Police Buy
226The SmithsHow Soon Is Now Buy
227Bob Marley & The WailersRedemption Song Buy
228Cold War KidsHang Me Up To Dry Buy
229Elliot SmithWaltz 2 Buy
230Leonard CohenClosing Time Buy
231The White StripesSeven Nation Army Buy
232John HiattPerfectly Good Guitar Buy
233Bruce SpringsteenGirls In Their Summer Clothes Buy
234Sarah HarmerBasement Apartment Buy
235Martin SextonDiner Buy
236The VerveBittersweet Symphony Buy
237My Morning JacketMahgeetah Buy
238Patty GriffinMad Mission Buy
239Rl BurnsideIts Bad You Know Buy
240BeckWhere Its At Buy
241FeistMy Moon My Man Buy
242Pete YornStrange Condition Buy
243Lucinda WilliamsDrunken Angel Buy
244Modest MouseFloat On Buy
245Dar WilliamsAs Cool As I Am Buy
246The New PornographersMy Rights Versus Yours Buy
247Peter HimmelmanWoman With The Strength Of 10,000 Men Buy
248Sonny LandrethCongo Square Buy
249Aimee MannSave Me Buy
250The DecemberistsThe Crane Wife 3 Buy


What inspired the countdown playlist? Check out our Resources page, a treasure trove of information about the aural history of XPN - Artists to Watch, festival lineups, Featured Albums, and more!

885 Countdown Video

Watch a clever remake of the classic Bob Dylan "Subterranean Homesick Blues" video starring Jim McGuinn promoting the 885 Essential Songs Countdown. Click to watch and share

Watch the Video. Share it with a Friend. Listen to the Countdown. Become a Member.

Support for the 2021 All-Time Greatest Albums Countdown is Made Possible by