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30 minutes | Dec 20, 2016
Show #284 - Gayla Peevey (12/20/16)
Gayla Peevey was all of ten years old when she recorded the now-classic Christmas song, “I Want a Hippopotamus For Christmas.” She cut the track back in 1953 for Columbia records and even performed the single on the Ed Sullivan show. The song’s popularity allowed her hometown zoo to obtain a real hippopotamus. But, Gayla found following up her hit song difficult, and trying to break out as a serious singer even more challenging. She eventually wrote and recorded songs under a different name before walking away from the business altogether to raise a family. But then something funny happened: the Hippopotamus song continued to grow in popularity, until now it’s one of the most played Christmas songs of all time, and she even has reconnected with the Oklahoma City Zoo to perform the song there as a holiday tradition.
24 minutes | Dec 13, 2016
Show #283 - Dwight Twilley (12/13/16)
You could say it’s been one hell of a ride for Dwight Twilley. Emerging from Tulsa, Oklahoma in the mid Seventies, he scored a big hit right out of the gate with “I’m On Fire” - establishing right away Twilley’s keen way with a melody, something he’s been doing for over 40 years. After souring on the bright lights of the big city, he returned home to Tulsa near the close of the last millennium and began making records on his own terms. The Best of Twilley: The Tulsa Years sums up one of the most fruitful chapters of his career. The two disc set also contains several bonus tracks as well. Twilley also gives his memories of the late Leon Russell.
26 minutes | Nov 1, 2016
Show #282 - Jody Stephens of Big Star (11/1/16)
Big Star’s first two LPs were full of chiming guitars, heavy drums and melodic hooks, yet somehow both albums failed to meet the high expectations. Those failures loomed large as Alex Chilton and Jody Stephens went to work on their next project. Eventually called Third or Sister Lovers, the songs recorded for these sessions seemed at times to be the polar opposite of their first two records - alternating between haunting moments of despair, and fragile beauty. The album, never officially completed, has been issued over the years in many forms and track listings. But, Omnivore Recordings has assembled quite possibly the final word on the legendary project - Complete Third is s three-disc set, bringing together virtually every note recorded for these sessions. Through acoustic demos, rough mixes, and about as final version of the album as we’ll ever hear, we get a peek behind the scenes of this fractured masterpiece. We talk to Big Star drummer Jody Stephens about recording the album, what producer Jim Dickinson brought to the project, and how a song he wrote, “For You,” helped shape the rest of the record.
24 minutes | Oct 27, 2016
Show #281 - Seth Walker (10/27/16)
Remember when an album was a collection of great songs that you wanted to play over and over? Seth Walker does, and he's recently issued Gotta Get Back, his ninth album, full of his signature soul-blues hybrid. The new record finds him returning to his roots, enlisting family members to play on the album, and embracing the music that set him down his life's journey. We talk to him about some of the unique stories behind these great new songs, and how Stevie Ray Vaughan changed his life as a young college student.
26 minutes | Oct 21, 2016
Show #280 - John Hall (10/21/16)
John Hall has been able to live two distinctly different lives. In one, he led the Seventies soft-rock outfit Orleans, co-writing their two big hits “Dance With Me” and “Still the One.” In the other, he was a US Representative for New York’s 19th District from 2007 to 2011. John’s just put out his memoir, Still the One: A Rock n’ Roll Journey To Congress and Back. In it, we find several times where his two worlds intersect. We also find out how he struck up a friendship with Janis Joplin, and also had a large hand in the No Nukes concerts that featured heavyweights like Bonnie Raitt and Jackson Browne.
27 minutes | Sep 22, 2016
Show #278 - Tiffany (9/22/16)
Singer Tiffany had phenomenal success at an unbelievably young age. Her debut album went quadruple platinum when she was only 15 years old. That record yielded back to back number one hits with the Tommy James’ cover “I Think We’re Alone Now,” and “Could’ve Been.” Other hits followed, including the Beatles reworking “I Saw Him Standing There” and “All This Time.” But, the shelf life of a teen idol is usually short-lived. As she became an adult, she ventured into different territory - dance and country music. Now, she’s back with A Million Miles, her first new album in five years. She talks about learning the art of songwriting in Nashville, co-producing an album for the first time, and she reminisces about her early days in the music business.
29 minutes | Sep 20, 2016
Show #277 - Stephen Bishop (9/20/16)
Singer/songwriter Stephen Bishop scored several hit songs in the 70’s & 80’s like “Save it For a Rainy Day,” “On & On,” and “It Might Be You.” He wrote songs for many other artists, including “Separate Lives,” a #1 hit for Phil Collins & Marilyn Martin. He’s part of one of the most iconic scenes of the classic Animal House movie, where John Belushi smashes his guitar. Stephen has a brand new album called Blueprint, which features many songs that were originally demos. He tells us the origins behind many of the songs, plus how he became friends with Eric Clapton, and how got involved in the Animal House movie.
29 minutes | Sep 8, 2016
Show #276 - The Connells (Doug MacMillan) (9/8/16)
The Connells came out of the same Southern Pop scene that birthed R.E.M. and Let’s Active in the early Eighties. They scored multiple hits on US college radio with songs like “Something to Say,” “Stone Cold Yesterday,” and “Fun & Games.” The band was even bigger overseas, scoring the surprise European smash “’74, ’75” in 1993 (the song went #1 in several countries). The band’s 30-plus year career finally gets distilled on Stone Cold Yesterday: The Best of the Connells from the Bicycle Music Company. We talk with lead singer Doug MacMillan about why their classic music was unavailable for so many years. Plus he tells us stories about working with producer Mitch Easter, meeting the Pogues, and playing in Italy for a crowd of over 100,000 people.
24 minutes | Aug 29, 2016
Show #275 - Becoming the Beach Boys (8/29/16)
The Beach Boys are the greatest American Rock n’ Roll Band. Their music is ever-present in our culture. Kids of today are as likely to know the words to “Surfin’ USA,” and “Fun Fun Fun,” as “Mary Had a Little Lamb.” A new collection released by Omnivore Recordings, Becoming the Beach Boys, the Complete Hite and Dorinda Morgan Sessions, gives us the clearest view into the group’s origins. Through demos, rehearsals, multiple takes and studio chatter, you can hear the Beach Boys gelling as a band, both vocally and musically. We talk with the man that helped put this fantastic package together, the owner of Omnivore Recordings, Brad Rosenberger. We discuss how he acquired these vintage tapes, the cool memorabilia in the accompanying booklet, and some of the oddest tracks in the set.
28 minutes | Aug 18, 2016
Show #274 - Lesley Gore Book (8/18/16)
Lesley Gore had a series of million-selling singles in the mid 1960's, including "It's My Party,""Judy's Turn to Cry," and "You Don't Own Me." At the same time, she blazed a trail for the current crop of female artists that are dominating the pop music of today. Unbelievably, there has never been a biography written about this influential artist - until now. Trevor Tolliver, a life-long fan, has just issued You Don't Own Me: the Life and Times of Lesley Gore from Backbeat Books. We talk about how Tolliver gathered his extensive information, including becoming friends with the singer near the end of her life. We also chronicle Gore's rise to fame and how she struggled when public taste shifted.
29 minutes | Aug 5, 2016
Show #273 - Fabian (8/5/16)
Long before Justin Bieber, N’ Sync, and even David Cassidy, Fabian was one of the original teen idols, scoring big hits in the late 50’s and early 60’s with songs like “Tiger” and “Turn Me Loose.” The shelf life of a teen idol is a finite one, yet Fabian was able to adapt, becoming a successful, and critically acclaimed actor, starring in many films, including North to Alaska with John Wayne, Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation starring Jimmy Stewart, and Ride the Wild Surf. He’s also done many roles on television. Now, he’s back on the road with a pair of his old friends, Frankie Avalon & Bobby Rydell, as part of the Golden Boys tour. We chat with Fabian about being courted to join the music business as his dad was wheeled out in an ambulance, meeting Elvis (and giving him his pants), and why he left the music business for awhile.
29 minutes | Aug 3, 2016
Show #272 - Rhonda Ross (8/3/16)
Rhonda Ross has some very famous parents - she's the only daughter of legendary singer Diana Ross and Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr. Yet, she’s always walked to her own beat - first making a name for herself as an actress - garnering a Daytime Emmy Nomination for her role on the NBC soap opera Another World, and being named one of the “10 Most Fascinating Television Stars” by People Magazine. But, she eventually found herself naturally returning to music. Rhonda’s style is rooted in jazz, yet also contains elements of funk, soul, even a little rock. She’s just put out a brand new CD called In Case You Didn’t Know, and she’s opening for her mom, Diana, on her current tour. Ross talks about releasing her first studio album, which contains songs written and produced by her. Plus, she discusses an upcoming speaking engagement at the Motown Museum, and how she remains positive, even through difficult times.
30 minutes | Jul 21, 2016
Show #271 - The Bangles (Vicki Peterson) (7/21/16)
The Bangles first received national attention with their debut album, All Over the Place in 1984, and the MTV hit, “Hero Takes a Fall.” The followup album, Different Light, would go triple platinum and spawn three massive hits with “Manic Monday,” “If She Knew What She Wants,” and “Walk Like An Egyptian.” The Bangles have just issued Ladies & Gentlemen…the Bangles on Omnivore Records featuring the band’s earliest recordings, back in print for the first time in years. We talk with founding member, guitarist Vicki Peterson about unearthing these lost gems, plus their garage rock roots, and the recent loss of Prince, who wrote their breakout hit, “Manic Monday.”
32 minutes | Jul 13, 2016
Show #270 - Holger Petersen of Stony Plain Records (7/13/16)
Holger Peterson started Stony Plain Records 40 years ago at his kitchen table with partner Alvin Jahns. It’s grown into one of the most respected independent labels in history, balancing a roster of legendary artists like Maria Muldaur, Ian Tyson and Long John Baldry with up and coming acts. To celebrate, they’ve released 40 Years of Stony Plain, a 3-disc set highlighting artists on the label, plus some rare and unreleased tracks. We also talk about the resurgence of physical music.
33 minutes | Jul 4, 2016
Show #269 - Bruce Channel (7/4/16)
Bruce Channel wrote and recorded one of the most iconic songs of the early rock n’ roll era with “Hey Baby” - a number one hit in 1962, featuring harmonica from Delbert McClinton. That one song has endured, being included in movies like Dirty Dancing, TV shows like Mad Men, and has been covered by many other artists. During his early success, Channel had a chance to tour Europe - and played a gig where the Beatles opened for him! Channel has also written many hits on the country charts and continues to perform. We talk to Channel extensively about his early days growing up in Texas, how "Hey Baby" became a worldwide smash, and that fateful meeting with the Fab Four!
29 minutes | Jun 10, 2016
Show #268 - Human Beinz part two (6/13/16)
Our conversation with Ting Markulin, rhythm guitarist for the Human Beinz, continues. After the success of their lone hit, "Nobody But Me," how did they try and follow it up? Markulin also talks about how Capitol Records misspelled their name, how the band toured with the Beach Boys, and met someone who would go on to be one of the most notorious criminals of the last 50 years. The Human Beinz also toured Japan to large acclaim.
29 minutes | Jun 9, 2016
Show #267 - Human Beinz part one (Ting Markulin) (6/10/16)
The Human Beinz emerged from Youngstown, Ohio in 1968 scoring a #8 hit with their cover of the Isley Brothers’ song “Nobody But Me.” Ting Markulin, the band’s rhythm guitarist, is the only remaining original member. In part one of our interview, Markulin talks about the band’s early days, including the unlikely story of how they got signed to Capitol Records, and how “Nobody” happened by accident,
31 minutes | May 27, 2016
Show #266 - Makana (5/27/16)
Guitarist Makana plays in an interesting style native to his home of Hawaii - slack key guitar. It’s a dazzling method that sounds like 3 guitars are all playing at once: the bass, rhythm and melody. He’s performed on three Grammy-nominated albums, including the soundtrack to the Descendants, starring George Clooney. He’s received acclaim from contemporaries like Joe Satriani and Kirk Hammett of Metallica. He’s done albums devoted to native Hawaiian music, he’s covered classic rock songs, and he’s done protest songs. He’s currently on the opening slot of the Joe Walsh/Bad Company tour. He also tells us how he played a gig for President Obama. SOME MATERIAL NSFW.
32 minutes | Apr 26, 2016
Show #265 - BJ Thomas (4/26/16)
BJ Thomas is a 5-time Grammy winner who’s sold over 70 million records worldwide. His hits endure to this day - songs like “Hooked on a Feeling,” “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry,” “Another Done Somebody Wrong Song,” and “Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head.” He remains active, still recording and playing shows to this day. Thomas tells us the stories behind some of his biggest songs, and about touring with James Brown early in his career.
28 minutes | Apr 1, 2016
Show #264 - Gary Lucas (4/1/16)
Gary Lucas wrote songs for Jeff Buckley and played guitar with Captain Beefheart. His latest project is a pairing with acclaimed vocalist Jann Klose for a stripped-down, acoustic-based album called Stereopticon. Lucas tells us how he got hooked up with Klose and the stories behind several songs on the new record. He also talks about meeting Buckley for the first time and writing songs for the Grace album.
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