Tag Archives: podcast

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.

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 cut as 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.  And, he tells us a very funny story of touring with Linda Ronstadt.

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, turning in the surprise European smash “’74, ’75” in 1993 (the song still makes “best of Nineties’ lists overseas).

The band’s 30-plus year career finally gets distilled on Stone Cold Yesterday: The Best of the Connells from the Bicycle Music Company.

From the band, we talk with singer Doug Macmillan, who talks 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.

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.

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.

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.

Show #272 – Rhonda Ross (8/3/16)

Rhonda Ross has some very famous parents – 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.

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.”

 

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 putting together this great collection, and the resurgence of physical music.

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.