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Sidetrack Liner Notes

Discussions with people with a passion for music. Stories, facts and legends, the kind of information we once got from liner notes. Because if the music is good we want to know more.
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Now displaying: Category: music
Jan 17, 2020

Of course GE has done it all. He started playing publicly in Pennsylvania when he was 11, did the obligatory 10,000 hours with The Scratch Band in Ct., lead the powerhouse Saturday Night Live band in New York, toured the world playing with Bob Dylan among others and is active today with a newly recorded album waiting in the wings soon to be released. His first hand knowledge of instruments and equipment can not be matched. The man knows what he’s talking about and doesn’t hold back. This is a much anticipated and enjoyable podcast recorded on a sparkling day in Amagansett. He is most  generous with his time and stories. Settle in for a pleasurable and wide ranging conversation with one of the smartest, most talented and just plain nicest musicians today. 

 

Nov 22, 2019

Tommy Goldsmith writer, musician, record producer, historian and raconteur has just released “Earl Scruggs and Foggy Mountain Breakdown The Making of an American Classic”. Sure there are musicians who have left their mark on music. Will anyone ever play the cornet like Louis Armstrong, the cello like Pablo Casals, the saxophone like Charlie Parker, or the electric bass like Jaco Pastorius ? Earl Scruggs not only excelled at his chosen instrument, the 5 string banjo but created a music that can’t be played without his style. Goldsmith tells the story of Scruggs development and of Bluegrass Music itself from the inside. His 30 years of writing on music and culture for newspapers in N.C. and Tenn. along with producing over 20 records for various artists in Nashville give him a unique perspective. As a musician himself Goldsmith understood exactly what Earl was talking about when he interviewed him over several years of their friendship. Goldsmith also edited “The Bluegrass Reader” which won the Best Journalist award from the International Bluegrass Music Association.

 

 

Sep 25, 2019

We return to John Hammond’s place to continue our conversation that was recorded in SLN #37. In this podcast he discusses some of his favorite guitars and why. He shares great stories of the Greenwich Village scene he was so much a part of in the 60s and the shift to electric music that he helped bring about. We continue his tales of touring and recording which continue through today.

Aug 29, 2019

The Blues have always been John Hammond’s musical passion. Throughout his career he has explored all facets of The Blues from primitive solo acoustic to sophisticated urban played with a who’s who of stellar accompanist. He started in his hometown of New York City as a member of the folk revival but his emphasis was on the blues always leading the pack with his deep knowledge, ability, taste and charisma. He was performing Robert Johnson and incorporating electric accompaniment long before anyone else. He has always performed live throughout his career and generously shares great stories of his life both as a performer and recording artist. In this Sidetrack Liner Notes podcast (the first of 2) we trace his career by exploring his LP s in chronological order. It is with a small amount of pride that we note the John Hammond performed at The Sidetrack Coffee House in 1965. 

Aug 29, 2019

The Blues have always been John Hammond’s musical passion. Throughout his career he has explored all facets of The Blues from primitive solo acoustic to sophisticated urban played with a who’s who of stellar accompanist. He started in his hometown of New York City as a member of the folk revival but his emphasis was on the blues always leading the pack with his deep knowledge, ability, taste and charisma. He was performing Robert Johnson and incorporating electric accompaniment long before anyone else. He has always performed live throughout his career and generously shares great stories of his life both as a performer and recording artist. In this Sidetrack Liner Notes podcast (the first of 2) we trace his career by exploring his LP s in chronological order. It is with a small amount of pride that we note the John Hammond performed at The Sidetrack Coffee House in 1965. 

Aug 29, 2019

The Blues have always been John Hammond’s musical passion. Throughout his career he has explored all facets of The Blues from primitive solo acoustic to sophisticated urban played with a who’s who of stellar accompanist. He started in his hometown of New York City as a member of the folk revival but his emphasis was on the blues always leading the pack with his deep knowledge, ability, taste and charisma. He was performing Robert Johnson and incorporating electric accompaniment long before anyone else. He has always performed live throughout his career and generously shares great stories of his life both as a performer and recording artist. In this Sidetrack Liner Notes podcast (the first of 2) we trace his career by exploring his LP s in chronological order. It is with a small amount of pride that we note the John Hammond performed at The Sidetrack Coffee House in 1965. 

Apr 25, 2019

Most of us found out about Steve Earle when his first album, “Guitar Town” came out in 1986. It is still one of the best first album from any artist ever. To date he has released 17 albums and won Grammeys for several of them. If that weren’t enough, he has appeared in 2 television series, “The Wired” and “Treme” and written 2 books. His most recent album “Guy” is composed entirely of songs by one of his Texas songwriting mentors, Guy Clark.  In this podcast Steve shares his strong opinions on a range of topics: recording techniques, musicians who deserve the designation- genius, his admiration for his touring band, The Dukes, the quality of certain acoustic and electric guitars etc. It’s a rapid fire conversation where the facts and anecdotes come at you fast and furious. If you’re a SLN listener you will love this podcast.

Mar 11, 2019

But wait, there's more. At 3 1/2 hours podcast 34 was hardly short. Don't even ask how we left this out of that podcast but we did, we found it and now you can listen to even more of Dan's stories. Included in this podcast are his stories of interviewing George Harrison and more about his father's record collection and Tommy Tedesco. We think it will be many moons before Dan's record for length of podcast and number of entertaining stories is equaled. Enjoy.

Mar 6, 2019

Dan Forte’s musical journey was blessed from the start: Family– father who loved Django Reinhardt, Location- the S.F. Bay Area, Timing- the 60s. Throw in talent, humor, taste and skill for a can’t miss mixture. Dan took full advantage of S.F.’s 60’s- 70’s scene where live music was everything. While getting his BA at Stanford, he taught an accredited "History of the Blues"class, put on concerts and wrote about music for the university's newspaper. Journalism followed, where he helped Guitar Player Magazine rise to the top. Eventually Senior Associate Editor at GP, Dan also introduced the mysterious but always humorous Teisco Del Rey who has brought to light some of the weirdest guitars ever, and after relocating to Austin released 2 instrumental-rock albums, “The Many Moods of Teisco Del Rey” (1992) and “Teisco Del Rey Plays Music for Lovers” (’96). As Teisco he maintains an inspiring if sporadic concert schedule.

Dan has interviewed a veritable encyclopedia of guitarists. We await the book that must be forthcoming. For more than a decade, he has called Vintage Guitar Magazine home base. His cover story on Mike Bloomfield is as good as it gets. His VG reviews are always spot on as well.

In this extensive podcast Dan holds nothing back. It’s a joyful ride where he shares his lifetime pursuit and love of music.

Feb 6, 2019

 

Do yourself a favor. Listen to this podcast and get captivated by the musical camaraderie that swirls between John Dunbar lead singer and songwrtiter (A Confederacy of Dunces, The Kunks), Sal Maida, bassist (Roxy Music, Sparks, Milk N Cookies) and Sal Nunziato  drummer (Pep In The Cat, The Cool Jerks). The musical references come fast and furious like they probably did in the studio when they recorded their hook fueled new C D “Nothing Doing” a follow up to their first CD , “A new Set of Downs”. The 3 New Yorkers were kind enough to share their experiences and enthusiasm for this podcast. These guys know their craft and are having a great time practicing it. A good ride for sure.

 

Jan 10, 2019

Welcome to Storytown a C D to be released this month. 12 original songs all composed by Guy Story and performed by his band Storytown which is comprised of Guy on all Vocals and Guitar, Tony Cruz-Drums, Percussion, Charlie Roth-Keyboards, Rick Wagner-Bass with guest artist Jim Corter Upright Bass (Sad), Fawzia Afzal-Khan-Vocal (Broken Promise Land). In podcast #31 Guy speaks freely about the stories behind some of the songs as well as the experience of recording them and producing the C D project as a whole. A fascinating story and an extremely likable Guy (pun intended)

Jan 2, 2019

It’s a bit difficult to describe Dick Boak without resorting to cliches; renaissance man, gentleman and a scholar etc. I could keep stringing them on because in Dick’s case the descriptions apply. For 42 years Dick was employed by the C. F. Martin Guitar Company where he used his considerable skills as artist, musician, woodworker, draftsman, luthier, public relations maven and art director. His 1976 hiring at Martin perfectly coincided with the vintage guitar phenomenon. Dick and Chris Martin IV, CEO and chairman, are recognized as returning the company to its former stature and bringing it to a new prominence. Dick  established the artist relations department where they produced the highly sought after limited edition guitars with  artists Eric Clapton, Paul Simon, Joan Baez, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, CSNY, Mark Knopfler, Marty Stuart and others. In this case “every guitar tells a story” so settle in for a great podcast where he tells personal tales and music anecdotes and his all to rare story of a talent flowering in a corporate environment. Of course, his talents and lively sensibility weren’t left behind at Martin. We look forward to what he gets up to in the next chapter of his amazing journey. But for now enjoy this podcast filled with his extremely interesting stories thus far.

Nov 21, 2018

Dick Boak best known for his work with the C. F. Martin Guitar Co. has another side. Dick is an established artist and illustrator with an exhibition Nov. 17th through Dec. 8th. daily 3-9 P.M. located in Matt Umanov's guitar shop 273 Bleecker St Greenwich Village in New York City. Dick's original pen and ink drawings are on display as well as  prints. 7 of Dick's custom guitars and basses are on display. This display evidences the clean sensibility Dick brought to his work for Matin Guitars

Oct 26, 2018

                Jimmy Vivino is the complete musician, guitarist, keyboard player, composer, arranger, and producer with a deep appreciation for the musical path we are all on. Mr Vivino is well known for a variety of gigs. His collaborations with legendary blues and rock luminaries are simply to lengthy to list. For years he has been a member of The Fab Faux (the ultimate Beatles re-creation band) with Will Lee, Rich Pagano, Jack Petruzzelli and Frank Angello. He currently resides in Los Angeles but was involved with the vibrant east coast scene around Woodstock, N Y working with John Sebastian and crew on several Jug band projects and the much celebrated “Midnight Rambles” sessions hosted by Levon Helm while he was still with us but still carrying on today. Clear some time to enjoy this podcast featuring Jimmy’s stories all of which reflect his deep appreciation and love of musicians and all thing musical. A raconteur of the first order.

Aug 29, 2018

The Songbirds Guitar Museum has been open in Chattanooga, Tennessee. for a little more than a year now. If you are a vintage guitar geek then you probably already have heard about it. Terry Foster (SLN #11) and I paid a visit to examine a recent addition to the museum’s collection, Fender Spanish guitar #0075 . In this podcast we discuss the Museum’s creation and mission with it’s chief curator David Davidson. Songbirds has done it right, a beautifully repurposed industrial space (the old Chattanooga Choo  Choo Station) houses a mind boggling collection of vintage guitars. Do not listen to this podcast if you can’t book a trip to Chattanooga .

Aug 4, 2018

25: The Rails

James and Kami Walbourne are The Rails, a husband and wife duo from London. “Fair Warning”, their first album was called by Mojo magazine the best folk album of 2014. Their newest CD, “Other People” broadens their sound and if possible is even better. James is the lead guitarist for The Pretenders and Kami is the daughter of Richard and Linda Thompson. This podcast was recorded with them in New York the morning after a very successful gig at The Mercury Lounge just before returning to London. Most anything you would want to discuss is covered in the conversation, their roots, musical and otherwise, their recent recording in Nashville with producer Ray Kennedy, their admiration for a varied list of fellow musicians and of course favorite guitars. Catch them live if you can. Their songs and their harmony singing will convince you that we will emerge from these Dark Times into a brighter future. Who doesn’t want some of that? 

May 25, 2018

We welcome noted author and journalist Gene Santoro for an extensive conversation about his long association with music both as a writer and performer. Gene is one of the lucky ones who roamed NYC's music haunts in the 1960s and was able to see and hear first hand John Coltrane, The Blues Project, Dave Van Ronk, The Mothers of Invention, Tiny Tim and many others. Starting to write about music with Guitar World Magazine his articles have appeared in The New York Times, The New Yorker, Down Beat, Rolling Stone, The Nation and other periodicals. He is the author of "Myself When I am Real" the definitive biography of Jazz Legend Charles Mingus and 2 collections of his music related articles "Dancing in Your Head" and "Highway 61 Revisited" for the Oxford University Press. The musicians he has interviewed are simply too numerous to mention. He doesn't hold back in this podcast. It's difficult to say what is more interesting, the people he has interviewed or his observations and opinions on American music and culture of the last 50 + years.

Apr 13, 2018

 

23: Emily Duff

If you follow live music in New York then the buzz about Emily Duff has been inescapable. She turns out great new songs with a frequency not seen since that scruffy fellow landed in the Village back in ’61. God bless whoever funded her recent trip to Muscle Shoals to record “Maybe in the Morning ” an L P that stands with the best to EVER come out of The FAME Studio and that’s not said casually. In this podcast, she discusses her music, life and passions with candor and humor.

Mar 29, 2018

A deep discussion with John Sebastian concerning his boyhood and musical development in Greenwich Village and the folk movement, his founding of The Lovin' Spoonful, his move to California and his solo career which continues today. A raconteur of the first order who has had a front row seat when he hasn't been on stage himself to some of the most important events in American popular music of the last 60 years. 

Nov 21, 2017

Zeke Schein is our guest to discuss his discovery of what many believe is the 3rd photo of Robert Johnson King of the delta Blues and the writing of his new book, "Portrait of a Phantom". This discovery is not without controversy. Zeke lays out the story of finding the photo and his struggles to discover the identity of the 2 men in the photo. Zeke was optimal placed as first salesman an Greenwich Village's Matt Umanov Guitar Shop. He daily was able to share the image with some of the world's most knowledgeable and enthusiastic blues experts and fans. Zeke is an accomplished musician himself and has delved deeply into mastering the Robert John repertoire. His stewardship of the image and writing of the book make for a fascinating podcast. 

Nov 2, 2017

Martin Kelly is best known to SLN listeners for authoring the book "Fender The Golden Age" along with his brother photographer Paul Kelly and previous SLN participant Terry Foster. We visited him outside London where he lives with his wife Sarah Cracknell singer of Saint Etienne for this interview which covers his history and fascination with vintage guitars and amplifiers and his career as a musician, manager, label owner and producer of films. A joyous conversation full of info and details of a life devoted to music and collecting.

Oct 19, 2017

In pt. 2 of our conversation with John Cohen he discusses his trips to Kentucky to record Roscoe Holcomb, his collaboration with Ralph Rinzler for the first concerts for The Friends of Old Time Music, Doc Watson's trips to New York, The New Lost City Ramblers residency at The Ash Grove in L A where Johnny Cash stood in for Mother Maybelle and The Ramblers road trips with Ms Carter, Newport "65, and printing books with Steidl. A wonderful summation of a rich lifetime of creative projects revolving around music.

Oct 6, 2017

John Cohen This man has done it all, photographer, musician, film maker, teacher, historian. He started in the late 50s on the Lower East Side with the abstract expressionist and beatniks. By the 60s he was in the thick of the Folk Music Boom in Greenwich Village where he helped form the New Lost City Ramblers on of the best bands performing "Old Time Music" now referred to as "Americana". He tells us of photographing and filming then newcomer to the Village, Bob Dylan. Also stories of explorations to the South to locate, photograph, film and record original country musicians. A rich and varied life, tales well told by a remarkable gentleman.  

Oct 4, 2017

Recorded in Kingston N.Y. Part 2 of our conversation with Geoff where he discusses his time in the steel business (go figure?) and return to music recording the wonderful personal C D, "The Secret Handshake" , his 8 year classical music project in Antwerp, "Private Astronomy, the C D that features his arrangements of classic Bix Beiderbecke tunes, The Roots of Geoff Muldaur a project that now numbers 8 C Ds of material (the actual source recordings) that have inspired Geoff. Let's hope the notes for this project will become an autobiography and trips to Japan that result in The Martin Guitar Co. producing the Geoff Muldaur Model Martin Guitar. If you caught SLN podcast #16 we know you've been waiting for part 2. 

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