Born in 1996, this local do-it-yourself promotion company (named for the SEPTA regional rail that connects the Main Line to Center City) was founded by Ardmore native Sean Agnew with the express purpose of bringing back quality indie rock to a city that was often skipped over by touring bands due to lack of suitable venues.
The idea was to give audiences big shows in small spaces, for a more intimate live music experience. With no alcohol served and generally low prices, the shows cater to all ages, but especially the younger set. Over a mere decade, Agnew’s baby has become synonymous with Philadelphia’s  independent music scene.
Organizing and promoting shows at a variety of small-but-mighty venues, including the staple, The First Unitarian Church , and up-and-coming joints like Johnny Brenda’s  and the Starlight Ballroom , R5 has hosted many of today’s best names in indie music. Hot acts like Arcade Fire and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs played some of their first shows in Philly thanks to R5, while other cult favorites like Xiu Xiu and Mirah now make regular stops.
Philly’s  punk and indie crowds no longer need to travel to New York or D.C. to see their new favorite acts play, nor do they have to pay double the admission price to see old favorites play larger, overcrowded clubs and arenas.
Likewise, bands can now come to this city and play to the whole audience and not just the people standing in the front row. And the fact that many of them come at all, as opposed to a decade ago, can be gratefully attributed to R5.
As more venues are used and bigger bands come to play, Agnew’s philosophy holds true: “For the kids, by the kids.” No self-respecting music lover in Philly would have it any other way. Check out www.r5productions.com  for lineup and venue information.