Thursday, January 29, 2015

Playlist: January 28, 2015

Click to listen

Bob Dylan, That Lucky Old Sun
     from the forthcoming album Shadows In The Night
Bob Dylan, Big River
     from the new album The Basement Tapes Complete
29th Street Swingtet, Dolores
     Thu 1/29 @ Revolution Cafe
Rupa & The April Fishes, Poder (live)
     Sat 1/31 @ The New Parish
Ol Silver Tongue, Smoking Hot Pistol
     Wed 2/04 on Fog City Blues

Special in-studio guests: Barrio Manouche

     Fri 1/30 @ Saulsalito Seahorse
     Fri 2/27 @ Hopmonk Tavern

La Marcha Gatina
     from the forthcoming album Detrás de la Sombra
Pasión Árabe (in-studio)
Número 7 (in-studio)
La Mandanga, No me cansaría
Lucía (in-studio)
     from the forthcoming album Detrás de la Sombra

Royal Southern Brotherhood, World Blues
     Fri 1/30 @ Leo's
     Sat 1/31 @ Moe's Alley
Devon Allman, Leave the City
Willie Nelson, Lonely Street
     Mon 2/02 @ Wells Fargo Center for the Arts
     Tue 2/03 @ Bob Hope Theatre
Quinn DeVeaux, Sun and Moon
     Mon 2/02 @ Osteria
Big Bones, Put You Down Baby
     Fri 1/30 @ Friday Night Blues

Lucinda Williams, Stop Breakin' Down
     Fri 2/06 @ Uptown Theatre
Maria Muldaur, Why Are People Like That
     Fri 1/30 @ Zodiacs
Debbie Davies, Google Me Baby
     Fri 1/30 @ Biscuits and Blues
Janiva Magness, I Need A Man
Eddie Taylor, Dust My Broom
Paul Pena, A Bit of All Right
Bobby 'Blue' Bland, 36-22-36

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Playlist: January 21, 2015

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Bob Dylan, Stay With Me
     from the forthcoming album Shadows In The Night
Bill Frisell, A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall (live)
     Tue-Wed 1/27-28 @ Yoshi's
The New Basement Tapes, Hidee Hidee Ho #16
     from the new album Lost On The River
Bob Dylan, That's the Breaks
     from the new album The Basement Tapes Complete

Catfish Keith, Baby I'm A Fine Artiste
Steve James, Texas Tommy
Maria Muldaur, The Diplomat
     Wed 1/28 @ Freight & Salvage: Acoustic Blues Festival
Paul Geremia, Doctor Jazz
Junk Parlor, Rondo alla Turca
     Fri 1/23 @ Zodiacs
     Sat 1/24 @ Levi Studio
     Sun 1/25 @ Peri's
Barrio Manouche, Pasión Arabe
     Wed 1/28 on Fog City Blues
Amy LaCour, Mess Around
     Fri 1/23 @ Red Poppy Arthouse
Sugaray Rayford, Depression Blues
     Fri 1/23 @ Biscuits and Blues

Sly & The Family Stone, Love City
Con Brio, A Sex Supreme
     Thu 1/22 @ Torch Club
     Fri 1/23 @ Crystal Bay Club
     Sat 1/24 @ Fox Theater: UnderCover Presents Sly & The Family Stone's "Stand!"
Aki Kumar, Don't Hold Back
Little Jonny & The Giants, Trace of You
Ron Hacker, Filthy Animal (Chameleon)
     Sat 1/24 @ The Saloon
     Sun 1/25 @ Club Fox
Cathy Lemons, Black Crow
Phil Berkowitz, All Night Party
     Sat 1/24 @ The Saloon
Savoy Brown, Goin' To The Delta
     Fri 1/23 @ Hopmonk Tavern
     Sat 1/24 @ Auburn Event Center
     Sun 1/25 @ Moe's Alley
Dave & Phil Alvin, Just A Dream
     Thu-Fri 1/22-23 @ Moe's Alley
     Sat 1/24 @ Mystic Theater
     Sun 1/25 @ Auburn Event Center
Snooks Eaglin, C.C. Rider
Sam Cooke, A Change Is Gonna Come

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Playlist: January 14, 2015

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Hot Sardines, Bei Mir Bistu Shoen
     The Addition (2014-2015)
John Brothers Piano Company, Ba Dump a Dump
     Fri-Sat 1/16-17 @ Regency Ballroom
Afrofunk Experience, Village of a Million
     Thu 1/15 @ Birdland Jazzista
     Fri 1/16 @ Silo's
Briget Boyle, Untwist My Mind
     from the new album The Parts Interior
     Sat 1/17 @ Awaken Cafe

Special guest: Rustee Allen

     Sat 1/24 @ Fox Oakland: UnderCover Presents – Sly & The Family Stone's "Stand!"

Sly & The Family Stone, Stand!
Sly & The Family Stone, If You Want Me To Stay

Special in-studio guests: Jeremy Lyon, Pedro Gomez, Will Magid, Lyz Luke

Tumbleweed Wanderers, Everyday People
Jeremy Lyon, Everyday People (in-studio)
Jeremy Lyon, Lower Forty-Eight (in-studio)
Tumbleweed Wanderers, Worn Down Welcome
Sly & The Family Stone, Everyday People
Bayonics, Sing A Simple Song
Bayonics, Wheels Keep Turning (remix)
Will Magid & Friends, Zig Zag
Will Magid, Jubilee Wiggle
Marcus Shelby, Somebody's Watching You
Awesöme Orchestra Collective, Stand!

Allen Toussaint, Egyptian Fantasy
Lavay Smith & Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers, Everybody's Talkin' Bout Miss Thing
Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band, Trout Mask Replica

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Playlist: January 7, 2015

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Roy Milton Solid Serenaders, New Year's Resolution's Blues
Hillstomp, The Cuckoo
     Fri 1/09 @ Slim's
     Sat 1/10 @ The Catalyst
Karina Denike, Ballad of a Thin Man
     Sun 1/11 @ Brick & Mortar Music Hall
Tin Cup Serenade, Limbo Jazz
     Sat 1/10 @ Speisekammer
     Sat 1/17 @ Capone's
Go Van Gogh, Juicy Cumbia
     Fri 1/09 @ Awaken Cafe

Special in-studio guests: Jimmy Grant Ensemble

     Thu 1/08 @ Studio Grand

I've Found a New Baby (in-studio)
Blues en Mineur (in-studio)
Montagne Ste. Geneviève (in-studio)
Gonzalo Bergara, Flèche d'Or
Junk Parlor, Vampires Never Die
Bunicul (in-studio)
What Is This Thing Called Love?

Charlie Musselwhite, Blues Overtook Me
Billy Boy Arnold, Keep On Rubbing
Sonny Boy Williamson, Blue Bird Blues
Big Bill Broonzy, Cherry Hill
Big Maceo Merriweather, Ramblin' Mind Blues
Tampa Red, Denver Blues
Mark Hummel, Worried Life Blues
Elvis Presley, Medley: Where Could I Go But to the Lord / Up Above My Head / Saved
Elvis Presley, When It Rains It Really Pours
The Wild Tchoupitoulas, The Wild Tchoupitoulas
Cyril Neville, Tipitina

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Playlist: December 31, 2014

Click to listen

The Orioles, What Are Doing New Year's Eve?
Smokey Hogg, New Year’s Eve Blues
The Qualities, Happy New Year to You
Billy Ward & His Dominoes, Ringing in a Brand New Year
Johnny Otis Orchestra, Happy New Year Baby
Lightnin' Hopkins, Happy New Year

Shun Ng, Billie Jean (in-studio)
Andy T - Nick Nixon Band, On My Way to Texas (in-studio)
Olli Soikkeli, My Blue Heaven (in-studio)
Lost Dog Found, Nobody Loves You Like I Do (in-studio)
Rupa & The April Fishes, Like I Do (in-studio)
Royal Jelly Jive, Alhambra (in-studio)
Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir, Joy to the World (in-studio)
Midtown Social, Shine Again (in-studio)
The Stone Foxes, Little Red Rooster (in-studio)
Aki Kumar & Little Jonny, She Don't Want Me No More (in-studio)
The Heartbeats, After New Year's Eve

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Philosophy Talk: The Billboards

One of my favorite parts of my day job as Producer of Philosophy Talk is putting together the billboards, aka open tease, that comprise the first minute of the broadcast (before the news). It's basically a condensed clip show, with a small set of voices (hosts, guest, movie/TV clips, song lyrics) combining to form an aural entity far greater than the sum of its parts. Coming up with that set for each show -- recording the hosts reading wild lines, scouring the interweb for clips to "answer" them, finding a song with just that right balance of usable lyrics and instrumentalizable passages -- can be a struggle, but the result is usually a pleasure.

I've finally started compiling all the ones I've produced (i.e. all but a tiny handful) in one place. As of this writing, it's everything that aired in 2014. But the complete will stretch back to 2007. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Playlist: December 24, 2014

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The Ramones, Merry Christmas (I Don't Want to Fight Tonight)
Blind Boys of Alabama & Taj Mahal, Merry Christmas!
     from the new album Talkin' Christmas
Ray Brenner and Barry E. Blitzer, The Problem
Larry Harlow, El Dia de la Navidad

The Enchanters, Mambo Santa Mambo
Duke Ellington & His Orchestra, Sugar Rum Cherry
Wardell Gray and Dexter Gordon, Jingle Jangle Jump
Freddy King, I Hear Jingle Bells
John Lee Hooker, Blues For Christmas
The Qualities, It's Christmas Time
The Five Keys, It's Christmas Time
The Drifters, White Christmas
The Marquees, Santa Done Got Hip

Christmas Jug Band, I'm Dreamin' of a Wet Christmas
     from the new album Jugology: Greatest Near Misses
Dan Hicks & The Hot Licks, Somebody Stole My Santa Claus Suit
     Wed 12/31 @ Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center
Royal Jelly Jive, Alhambra
     Sat 12/27 @ Amnesia
     Wed 12/31 @ Bolinas Community Center
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Get Up & Get Out
     Tue-Wed 12/30-31 @ The Fillmore
Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, Shortyville
North Mississippi Allstars, Goat Meat
     Wed 12/31 @ Masonic Center
Earl Thomas, Don't Do Me This Way Again
     Wed 12/31 @ Biscuits and Blues
Terrie Odabi, Daddy-O
     Wed 12/31 @ Rhythmix
Will Magid, The Box
Midtown Social, Solid Ground
Con Brio, California Cowboy
     Wed 12/31 @ Rickshaw Stop
Vince Guaraldi Trio, A Charlie Brown Christmas

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Playlist: December 17, 2014

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Jon Stewart and Stehpen Colbert, Can I Interest You in Hanukkah?
The Klezmatics, Do The Latke Flip-Flip
     Sat 12/20 @ Kuumbwa Jazz Center
     Sun 12/21 @ SFJazz Center
Kim Nalley, Hanukkah in Santa Monica
     Sun 12/21 @ Biscuits and Blues
Christmas Jug Band, Hey Santa!
     Fri 12/19 @ Zodiacs
     Sat-Sun 12/20-21 @ Sweetwater Music Hall
Blind Boys of Alabama & Taj Mahal, Talkin' Christmas
     Sat 12/20 @ SFJazz Center
     Sun 12/21 @ Wells Fargo Center for the Arts

Special in-studio guests: Midtown Social

     Wed 12/31 @ Rickshaw Stop

It's Alright (in-studio)
Solid Ground (in-studio)
Shine Again (in-studio)
One of These Things (in-studio)
All Around the World or The Myth of Fingerprints

Special in-studio guests: Lyz Luke, Will Magid and Andrew Laubacher

Will Magid & Friends, Zig Zag
Will Magid, Ghanaian Pavane
Will Magid, Cuba Swing
Con Brio, Give It All
Con Brio, A Sex Supreme
Zakiya Harris, I Want to Take You Higher
Tumbleweed Wanderers, Everyday People

Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Last Night
Mark Hummel, I'm Gonna Ruin You
James Booker, Professor Longhair Medley: Tipitina / Bald Head
Professor Longhair, Tipitina

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Playlist: December 10, 2014

Yusuf, Editing Floor Blues
     Fri 12/12 @ Masonic Center
Quinn DeVeaux & The Blue Beat Review, Tara Jean
     Sat 12/13 @ Leo's
Con Brio, California Cowboy
     Sat 12/13 @ The Independent
Will Magid, Cuban Swing
     Thu 12/11 @ Academy of Sciences
Midtown Social, Socialite Boogie (in-studio)
     Wed 12/17 on Fog City Blues

Special guests: Tim Eschilman and Duke Dewey

     Fri 12/12 @ Rossi's 1906
     Sat 12/13 @ Point Reyes Dance Palace
     Tue 12/16 @ Freight & Salvage

Christmas Jug Band, Santa Claus Is My Main Man
Christmas Jug Band, I'm Dreamin' of a Wet Christmas
Christmas Jug Band, Rudolph the Bald-Headed Reindeer
     from the new album Jugology: Greatests Near-Misses (Best of...)

Franky Bey & Anthony Paul Band, Everyday Will Be Like A Holiday
Blind Boys of Alabama & Taj Mahal, Who Will Remember?
     from the new album Talkin' Christmas
Blue Rodeo, If We Make It Through December
     from the new album A Merrie Christmas To You

The Plāto'nes, Oops!... I Did It Again
     Sun 12/14 @ Philosophy Talk Live at the Marsh
The Plāto'nes, Didn't It Rain
California Honeydrops, Rain
John Campbell, When The Levee Breaks
Bob Dylan, A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall (live)
James Brown, Stormy Monday

Stanley Adams and Sid Wayne, 'Twas the Night Before Hanukkah
Temple B'Nai Abraham of Essex County Children's Choir, Svivon Sov Sov Sov
Mickey Katz, Grandma's Dreidel
Meshugga Beach Party, Dreidel Dreidel
Guitar Slim, Things That I Used To Do
Big Mama Thornton, Sweet Black Angel
Junior Wells, Blues For Mayor Daley

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Inside the National Recording Registry: Celia & Johnny

A radio feature I produced about a 1974 salsa record by Celia Cruz and Johnny Pacheco airs nationally this weekend on PRI's Studio360:

It's the latest installment in our Peabody Award-winning series Inside the National Recording Registry. I'd had my mind set on doing this one since the get-go, based mostly on fondness for a CD of Celia's 1950s Cuban recordings that a friend used to play in his Park Slope apartment when I'd visit in the late 90s. I didn't actually know much about about Celia & Johnny, though I did narrate a pilot we produced about salsa music for a project called American Sabor. Our pieces didn't make the final exhibit, but one of the project's curators wound up as one of the voices in this story. (And for the small-world files: her partner, one of the other curators, co-founded the steel drum band I played in at Oberlin College.)

I myself did one of the interviews for the story, and it was easily the most challenging interview of my life. We managed to get in touch with Johnny Pacheco via his wife Cuqui, and so were thrilled to have one of the principals willing and available to talk about the record. He is, however, very old. Though he at first "got" the idea of repeating the question in the answer for our non-narrated purposes, he had a LOT of trouble keeping on topic. Lots of starting and stopping, trailing off. (Do I ask... now?) A not-great phone line didn't help either.

Later, when I got the studio tape, I could hear Cuqui prompting Johnny by whispering to him. God bless her, she was basically helping me each time she interrupted him with a little nagging admonishment. I may have cringed, but it saved the day, and Johnny was clearly touched to be talking about Celia. At the end of the interview he said to call him if I needed anything. I haven't yet, but in the meantime here's some more info about Celia & Johnny from Studio360's website:

In 1974, Latin music in the US was about to get a kick in the pants. The audience for the big bands was (as we say today) graying; younger, US-born Latinos thought of the classic Cuban forms — the mambos and sones and guarachas and guaguancós — as their parents’ and grandparents’ music. But Johnny Pacheco, a bandleader and star percussionist, had formed a new record label with a new approach. Fania Records, based in New York, put those forms together with influences from Puerto Rico, Colombia and other countries, and called it salsa.

“There was always this debate between [bandleader] Tito Puente and Johnny,” says Ana Cristina Reymundo, a biographer of singer Celia Cruz. “Tito would say, ‘Johnny, pero que la salsa, se come, no se toca — We eat salsa, we don’t dance it, and we don’t play it.’ And then Johnny would laugh and say, ‘But Tito, the kids don’t know that.’ It was a truly brilliant marketing strategy to repackage to these beloved rhythms.”

Pacheco wasn’t the first to use the term salsa to describe music, but Fania Records made it nationally popular, and Celia & Johnny was its first breakout hit. It set Cruz, a singularly talented and popular singer who had worked with Puente, in front of a much smaller band that left a lot of room for vocal improvisation.

“When I was rehearsing the band,” Pacheco remembers, “I saw that we had Dominicans, Cubans, Puerto Ricans, and two Jewish fellows. When you make a sauce, you have different ingredients. And when I saw the band and the singer I thought, this is what we got. We got salsa.”

Playlist: December 3, 2014

Christmas Jug Band, S.A.N.T.A. (Gloria)
     from the new album Jugology: Greatest Near Misses (Best of...)
     Wed 12/10 on Fog City Blues
Preacher Boy, Down and Out in This Town
     Mon 12/08 @ Biscuits and Blues
Bob Corritore, Potato Stomp
     Sun 12/07 @ Biscuits and Blues
Kim Wilson, Hop, Skip & Jump
     Tue 12/09 @ Trianon Theatre
     Wed 12/10 @ Don Quixote's International Hall of Music

Special in-studio guests: Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir

     Sat 12/06 @ Paramount Theatre: 29th Annual Holiday Concert

Wonderful Counselor
God Is Great (in-studio)
Angels We Had Heard On High (in-studio)
Deck The Halls (in-studio)
Jesus What a Wonderful Child (in-studio)
Joy to the World (in-studio)
I Come A Mighty Long Way

Dr. John, Black Widow Spider
     Fri 12/05 @ SFJazz Center
Dr. John, Sweet Hunk o'Trash
     from the new album Ske-Dat-De-Dat: The Spirit of Satch
Jason Marsalis Vibes Quartet, The 21st Century Trad Band
     from the new album The 21st Century Trad Band
     Thu-Sun 12/04-07 @ SFJazz Center
California Honeydrops, Cry For Me (live)
     Fri 12/05 @ Lost On Main
     Sun 12/07 @ Harlow's
Con Brio, Give It All
     Sat 12/06 @ Hopmonk Tavern
     Wed 12/10 @ Torch Club
Tin Cup Serenade, Lament For Javanette
     Sat 12/06 @ Cafe Revolution
Darren Johnston, And Still the Sun Comes
     Sat 12/06 @ Amnesia
Howell Devine, She Brought Life Back to the Dead
     Sat 12/06 @ Club Deluxe
     Sun 12/07 @ Plymouth Jazz and Justice Church
Little Jonny & The Giants, Kiddio
Sonny Boy Williamson, My Younger Days
Tom Waits, Tom Traubert's Blues (Four Sheets to the Wind in Copenhagen)

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Playlist: November 26, 2014

Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn, Railroad
     from the new album Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn
     Fri-Sat 11/28-29 @ SFJazz Center
Junk Parlor, Si Tu Savais
Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir, Go Tell It On The Mountain
     Fri 11/28 @ Macy's Tree Lighting
     Wed 12/03 on Fog City Blues
Lavay Smith & Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers, With My Man
     Fri 11/28 @ Capone's
     Sat 11/29 @ Ashkenaz
     Sun 11/30 @ Royal Cuckoo

The Hot Baked Goods, Darkness on the Delta
     Sun 11/30 @ Amnesia
Hot Club of San Francisco, Buona Sera (live)
     Mon 12/01 @ Kuumbwa Jazz Center
Beso Negro, La Gente de Bien
     Fri 11/28 @ Sweetwater Music Hall
Slim Jenkins, Old Joe's Hittin' the Jug
     Fri 11/28 @ Amnesia
Eddie South, Rhapsody in Blue
Bob Dylan, Phnatom Engineer (live)
Jimi Hendrix Experience, Killing Floor (live)
Ike & Tina Turner, Crazy Bout You Baby

Sylvester Cotton, Thanksgiving Blues
Guy Davis, Thanksgiving Day
California Honeydrops, Pumpkin Pie
Lonnie Johnson, Sweet Potato Blues
The Robins, Turkey Hop Part 2
Steve Lucky & The Rhumba Bums, Where's My Gravy

Andre Williams, Pass the Biscuits Please
Doc Watson, 49 Biscuits
Gary & Larry, Garlic Bread
Carolina Chocolate Drops, Cornbread And Butterbeans
Joe Morris, Beans and Cornbread
Joe Houston, Cornbread and Cabbage Greens
Bogus Ben Covington, I Heard the Voice of a Porkchop
Joe Swift, Alligator Meat
The Four Southern Singers, Ham Bone Am Sweet
Bessie Smith, Gimme a Pigfoot and a Bottle of Beer
Harold Burrage, You Eat Too Much
The Robins, Turkey Hop Part 1