THE SOUND OF PHILADELPHIA

Philadelphia takes over Central Park. Diplo, the elder here, cleared the way for the rest of this bill—without his ubiquitous early-aughts equations between Southern rap, ’80s synths, baile funk, Daft Punk, P.J. Harvey, etc., the genre-chopping headliner here—dub-y songstress Santogold—wouldn’t even exist. It’s not exactly his moment anymore, but you won’t find too many cynics within earshot of any ’08 stage he decides to get on. The of-the-moment draw, though, is Santogold, who got to quit her day job as a songwriter for Ashlee Simpson, among others, when her excellent self-titled record came out in April. She’s our first post-M.I.A. pop star, not so much sonically as conceptually: frenetic, global production, a cozy relationship with her label’s advertising and licensing department, and a gang of talented friends (Diplo contributed tracks to her debut) who consistently make her better. With Kanye West’s DJ, A-Trak, and local rap phenom Kid Cudi.
Sun., July 20, 3 p.m., 2008


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