Dry January is right! Portland's music scene isn't usually flush with live shows this time of year—even with the welcome addition of Portland Music Month—but with last weekend's snow cancellations and our current citywide slow thaw, the music column this week is all about a stalwart hip-hop collab, a dreamy new single, and a music podcast milestone. We're not asking you to go outside. Stay in and vibe, Hear in Portland.


New release(s) from a Portland-relevant artist.

“Vacancy,” Blossom

Last week we were over the moon about a chance to see Portland soul singer Blossom live. Ahead of that show, the artist had teased an alluring new travel-inspired single. Now she’s gone and dropped the song, titled “Vacancy,” and it’s one of her best yet. “Are you open, do you have vacancy? Sign was on, do you want company?” Blossom softly sings at the song’s start. The track’s intimate vocals are beautifully and carefully executed, slowly building, and increasingly layered, with myriad ad libs, runs, and harmonies. It all adds remarkable dimension and color to the neo-soul song’s simple lo-fi backdrop. 

Dat Too, Drae Slapz and Scooter Rogers

We love a good ole Portland hip-hop collaboration! Portland-based rapper Scooter Rogers recently released a new project that's entirely produced by DJ and rapper Drae Slapz. The nine-track album definitely has some gems on it, like the bouncy “This That,” and “Can We Talk,” the latter of which heavily samples the song of the same name made famous by R&B artist Tevin Campbell in 1993. Inspired by the church and religious concepts, final track “The 10pm Sermon” ends up being the perfect ending to a solid album by two stalwart Portland hip-hop figures.


Some upcoming music buzz to add to your radar.

Dan Cable Presents 400th Episode

Hosted by the titular Dan Cable for the last eight years, Dan Cable Presents is one of the most successful podcasts in Portland. Cable’s intimate conversations—with genre-spanning musicians, artists, industry professionals, and more—are beloved for the obvious research and preparedness the interviewer shows, which he deftly unfolds via an organic, conversational format. You never know what you’re going to get from any given episode. Depending on what comes up, the show can skew goofy, or cover serious, heavy topics. Cable often records his show in the wild, wherever he can lug his equipment, and in 2023, the podcast produced interviews with artists like hip-hop duo They Hate Change at Pickathon, and local artists like New Body Electric, Bijoux Cone, Babers, Cam Spies of Night Heron, rapper NorthernDraw, trumpeter Farnell Newton, and music scene fixture Andre Middleton of youth music nonprofit Friends of Noise. The podcast is gearing up to release his 400th episode on February 27, which is impressive as hell! Cable told the Mercury the 400th episode will see local musician and composer Ayal Alves (Saroon) conduct a retrospective interview with Cable. “Ayal has a lot of experience in podcast hosting,” Cable said of Alves, who co-hosted the Honest Jams Podcast, which ran for more than 100 episodes and recently went on hiatus. “Ayal will be interviewing me and helping me reflect on the last eight years of doing the show.”