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United States

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English


Episodes

TBT – Album Review: James Taylor’s ‘Before this World’ from 2015

2/22/2018
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For this ‘Throwback Thursday’ (TBT) episode of Documenting Popular Music, we are replaying our 2015 review of James Taylor’s ‘Before this World' album. To date, it is the last studio album Taylor has released, and he has been performing songs from the album on his current concert tour. ‘Before this World’ was produced by one of Taylor’s long-time collaborators, Dave O’Donnell, and the core musicians who perform on the album have also been part of Taylor's inner circle for a long time....

Duration:00:17:55

Hey, Hey It’s the Monkees, Part II – A Look at the Individual Careers of the Monkees in the 70s and 80s

1/20/2018
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The Monkees TV show debuted in September of 1966 and ran until March of 1968. During that time, the band saturated the music charts and radio stations with songs such as “I’m a Believer,” “Daydream Believer,” “Last Train to Clarksville,” “Valleri,” “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You,” “Pleasant Valley Sunday,” “I’m Not Your Stepping Stone” and many others. The group consisted for Micky Dolenz, Davy Jones, Michael Nesmith, and Peter Tork, and the four had been assembled by producers at...

Duration:00:18:03

Hey, Hey It’s the Monkees, Part I – A Look at the Individual Careers of the Monkees in the 70s and 80s

1/20/2018
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The Monkees TV show debuted in September of 1966 and ran until March of 1968. During that time, the band saturated the music charts and radio stations with songs such as “I’m a Believer,” “Daydream Believer,” “Last Train to Clarksville,” “Valleri,” “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You,” “Pleasant Valley Sunday,” “I’m Not Your Stepping Stone” and many others. The group consisted for Micky Dolenz, Davy Jones, Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork, and the four had been assembled by producers at...

Duration:00:20:21

Album Review -- The Eagles, Donna Summer, Garth Brooks, Vince Gill, Randy Owen and Many Others Pay Tribute to Dan Fogelberg

12/15/2017
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Dan Fogelberg passed away 10 years ago this month. His memory has been kept alive this year by a number of events, including the release of two new albums, ‘Live At Carnegie Hall’ (a previously unheard performance from 1979) and a tribute album that features a long list of musicians that loved Fogelberg’s music. This episode of Documenting Popular Music takes a look at the tribute album and artist such as Garth Brooks, who performs “Phoenix” with Trisha Yearwood providing background...

Duration:00:14:27

The Making of a Classic – The Story of How One of Barry Manilow’s Most Beloved Songs Finally Became a Hit

11/20/2017
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It was 1971, and a 25-year-old Barry Manilow was still a struggling musician and commercial jingles writer when he came up with a melody he felt was very special. That melody would become the song “Could It Be Magic,” which featured a chorus based on the chord changes in Chopin’s Prelude in C Minor. “Could It Be Magic” had several early incarnations, including a version produced by a well-intending Tony Orlando that Manilow says thankfully didn’t become a hit. The behind the scenes...

Duration:00:12:47

Janis Ian Gets a Jazz Treatment – Sarah Partridge Talks about Her Tribute Album to the Folk Singer

10/28/2017
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About two years ago, Sarah Partridge began working on a project to bring new life to Janis Ian’s songs by presenting them with fresh jazz interpretations. Ian, who debuted during the folk scene of the 1960s, rose to fame with her hits “Society’s Child” (1967) and “At Seventeen” (1975), and she’s written numerous songs – some of which were previously unrecorded – that deal with social, political and relationship issues. Partridge and her arrangers – Allen Farnham and Tim Horner – have...

Duration:00:24:42

From the Heart of Alabama - Former Split the Dark Member Scott McDavid Talks about His Journey as a Musician (Part II)

10/22/2017
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Documenting Popular Music puts a spotlight on the thriving musical scene in Alabama and the city of Birmingham, where musician Scott McDavid was born and raised. McDavid’s journey is representative of numerous other musicians who work under some anonymity, but who have been vital to the creation, maintenance and spread of popular music in America. McDavid’s career began in his hometown, where he played with a number of local bands, including KD Ryzer, a very popular regional group. He...

Duration:00:25:11

From the Heart of Alabama - Former Split the Dark Member Scott McDavid Talks about His Journey as a Musician (Part I)

10/22/2017
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Documenting Popular Music puts a spotlight on the thriving musical scene in Alabama and the city of Birmingham, where musician Scott McDavid was born and raised. McDavid’s journey is representative of numerous other musicians who work under some anonymity, but who have been vital to the creation, maintenance and spread of popular music in America. McDavid’s career began in his hometown, where he played with a number of local bands, including KD Ryzer, a very popular regional group. He...

Duration:00:25:07

TBT - Neil Diamond's Melody Road Album Review from 2014

9/28/2017
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For this ‘Throwback Thursday’ (TBT) episode of Documenting Popular Music, we are replaying our 2014 review of Neil Diamond’s Melody Road album. To date, it is the last studio album of all new songs Diamond has delivered, and he is currently out of the country with his concert tour, celebrating 50 years in music. The TBT replay of the album review is a small way to satisfy Diamond’s legion of fans during his absence. The episode also offers some Neil Diamond history and takes a close-up...

Duration:00:19:58

Rusty Young - The Leader of Poco Talks in-depth about His First Solo Album and Joyfully Reminisces about the Past

9/13/2017
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After more than 50 years in music, Rusty Young, the leader of the group Poco, has recorded his first solo album. The new set is entitled ‘Waitin’ for the Sun,’ (Blue Élan Records) and it features 10 songs that not only give you a peek into Young’s life, but also into his emotions, as the “Crazy Love” singer/songwriter is unabashedly sentimental. In an interview with veteran journalist Robert Neil, Young tells the stories behind the songs, and when he gets to the track “My Friend,”...

Duration:00:25:27

Leader of the Band: Remembering Dan Fogelberg with Stories and Insights from His Record Producer

8/19/2017
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Dan Fogelberg’s talent was apparent from an early age, and by the time he was 19, he had a recording contract with a major record label. The man who would produce this young talent was Norbert Putnam, who was only about nine years Fogelberg’s senior. Together, these two worked on three of Fogelberg’s albums, which would turn out to be some of the most important records in his career. In an exclusive interview for this radio documentary, veteran journalist Robert Neil speaks with Putnam...

Duration:00:47:51

New Music – A Review of Herb Alpert’s New Album, Music Vol. 1

8/1/2017
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A living legend is back with his sixth album in the past seven years. Herb Alpert, the famed trumpeter and former record company executive, works with producer Jochem van der Saag on the new album Music Vol. 1. The combination of these two talents is masterful and satisfying, and it produces a collection that will please several generations of fans. The album features primarily cover songs with new treatments that emphasize rhythms and backbeats, and this review not only takes a look at...

Duration:00:14:08

Lessons in Rock and Roll and Jazz Music – Guitarist Doug Jackson of Ambrosia Talks about His Craft

7/20/2017
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Doug Jackson is the guitarist for the progressive rock group Ambrosia, which hit the singles and albums charts in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s. The bands biggest hits include “How Much I Feel” from the 1978 album Life Beyond L.A., and “Biggest Part of Me” and “You’re the Only Woman (You and I)” from the 1980 album One Eighty. Jackson permanently joined the group in 2000 after founding member David Pack had left to work on other projects. In this conversation, Jackson talks about his...

Duration:00:20:19

David Bowie -- Changes: Retrospective of a Rock Icon

7/15/2017
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On January 10, 2016, the music world was surprised and saddened to learn one of the biggest rock and roll icons of the last four decades had died. Due to his desire for privacy, the public was unaware that David Bowie had been diagnosed with liver cancer 18 months prior, and two days after his 69th birthday – and the release of his final studio album – he died of the disease at his New York home. This special episode of the Documenting Popular Music, written and narrated by veteran...

Duration:00:34:22

Rock and Roll History - Jazz Musician Ron Aprea Talks about Recording with John Lennon

7/5/2017
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Having played with some of the greats on the big band scene, saxophonist Ron Aprea has carved out a long and successful career as a jazz musician. He has also been part of rock and roll history as one of a small group of horn players to record with John Lennon on the former Beatle’s 1974 Walls and Bridges album. In this interview with Robert Neil, Aprea talks about his recent tribute album to Lennon and the Beatles as well as what it was like to record with Lennon (including a story about...

Duration:00:42:44

Urban Country: The Country/Pop Music Phenomenon of the Early 1980s

6/26/2017
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In the late 70s, a music trend began to take shape as Top 40 radio stations started playing more and more songs by artists that had usually been proprietary to county stations. By the early 80s, a legitimate country/pop phenomenon was under way, and numerous country songs and performers were receiving mainstream acceptance. Hosted by veteran journalist Robert Neil, this feature spotlights some of the prominent artists involved in the shift and examines the reasons behind the changes....

Duration:00:39:57

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