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Nocturnal Journal with Dave Hoekstra

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The two-hour show will revolve like a Lazy Susan around the things Dave has turned us all on to: roots music, tunes off the beaten path, supper club sounds, backroads travel, tiki culture, world music, old diners, rhythm and blues and Merle Haggard. Expect lots of guests and in-studio artists from all parts of Chicago.

The two-hour show will revolve like a Lazy Susan around the things Dave has turned us all on to: roots music, tunes off the beaten path, supper club sounds, backroads travel, tiki culture, world music, old diners, rhythm and blues and Merle Haggard. Expect lots of guests and in-studio artists from all parts of Chicago.
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Chicago, IL


The two-hour show will revolve like a Lazy Susan around the things Dave has turned us all on to: roots music, tunes off the beaten path, supper club sounds, backroads travel, tiki culture, world music, old diners, rhythm and blues and Merle Haggard. Expect lots of guests and in-studio artists from all parts of Chicago.




Stormy Weather prepares to send off the Star Plaza with a Doo-Wop extravaganza

Dave Hoekstra welcomes Henry Farag and the members of Indiana-based a capella giants Stormy Weather. The group sings a few tunes and talks about their upcoming performance as part of the Ultimate Doo-Wop Show at the soon-to-be-gone Star Plaza Theatre. They also discuss street corner memories in Northwest Indiana, Gary as an underrated hot bed for doo-wop music, and more. Longtime radio producer and musician/songwriter Roman Sawczak also joins the show with his memories of the Star Plaza’s...

Duration: 00:40:03

Scott Smith’s ‘Chasing the Blues’: “If you could have any record in the world, what would it be?”

Dave Hoekstra talks with Scott Smith, director and screenwriter of the upcoming feature Chasing the Blues, set to premiere this weekend at the Chicago International Film Festival.

Duration: 00:16:12

Nocturnal Journey: On the road with Ray and Wilma, Cracker Barrel connoisseurs

Dave Hoekstra talks with Ray and Wilma Yoder, who have spent over three decades on the road, visiting all 645 Cracker Barrel restaurants in 44 states. The Yoders, natives of Indiana near the RV capital of the world, talk about what sparked their love affair with this roadside slice of Americana and why it became their version of the ‘movable American dream’. Dave has a more extensive write up on the Yoders at his website. Video courtesy of Jon Sall. […]

Duration: 00:25:36

Little Steven Van Zandt makes a statement with ‘Soulfire’: “This is me as an artist”

The great ‘Little Steven’ Van Zandt joins Dave Hoekstra to discuss getting back in the studio after 18 years for a new solo record, Soulfire. He talks about rediscovering his creative voice after taking time out to focus on acting and touring with the E Street Band, his mission to promote some of the talented 60’s R&B artists that ended up getting overshadowed by The Beatles, the lost art of arranging in pop music, why he decided to get political after […]

Duration: 00:25:44

Video and audio: Music from Makani and the spirit of the Na Kupuna Ukulele Club

Dave Hoekstra welcomes the Lee family: Alyssa, Brittany, Courtney, Gracie and father Kaleo, of the local Hawaiian music group Makani, for some live tunes and a conversation on the legacy of the Na Kupuna Ukulele Club, a group of elder ukulele players that became a well-oiled machine playing gigs around the city. The girls talk about how their father and grandfather’s influence got them into playing music at young ages and tapping into the “blood harmony” of playing in a […]

Duration: 00:39:08

Joe Bryl’s ‘Jackets Required’: A celebration of the weird and wild in vintage pop-culture artwork

Dave Hoekstra welcomes collector Joe Bryl and filmmaker Tom Palazzollo about Chicago’s cultural memory and the upcoming exhibit Jackets Required (Party Night at Joe’s) at Co-Prosperity Sphere (3219 S. Morgan), which features items from Bryl’s personal collection of pulp novels, weird record covers, sexploitation movie posters and other pop culture ephemera, and explores how these art forms interact with their audiences, and the people who collect them.

Duration: 00:17:37

Hideout 101 and the ‘Sputnik Birthday Party’ with club co-owner Tim Tuten

Dave Hoekstra visits with Hideout Chicago co-owner Tim Tuten, as the club prepares to celebrate it’s Sputnik Birthday Party’ with the return of the Hideout Block Party, starting Saturday 9/23. They talk about Tuten’s early adventures in the city, how the 60th birthdays of Jon Langford, Eleventh Dream Days’ Rick Rizzo and other regular performers inspired a Sputnik-themed party, the inspiration for the template for the club, which blends the “American roadhouse” feel of FitzGeralds, the...

Duration: 00:27:09

State Park supt. Levi Bray and NAARVA’s Carolyn Buford: Camping is for everyone

Dave Hoekstra talks with Levi Bray, interim Superintendent of the William W. Powers Recreation Area, the only state park located in the City of Chicago, and Carolyn Buford, president of NAARVA (National African-American RVers Association), about spreading the love for camping and recreation among young people and people of color, who are relatively under-represented among surveyed campers.

Duration: 00:20:35

Talking suds and slams with veteran ballpark vendor/poet Bob Chicoine

Dave Hoekstra visits with his old friend, longtime ballpark vendor and poet Bob Chicoine, who does a couple live readings and talks about the changing crowds at baseball games in his time working the aisles, from slinging Schlitz at Comiskey in the ’70’s to pouring for the upscale crowd in the front rows of present-day Wrigley Field.

Duration: 00:17:45

Jumping on the ‘Smile Train’ with Graham Elliot, Nicholas Tremulis, Wayne Baker Brooks and Sergio Mayora

Dave Hoekstra previews World Smile Day Chicago, which takes place on 10/6 at 2 N. Riverside Plaza, featuring live musical performances, games, giveaways and more, all benefitting Smile Train, which provides support and information for families with children born with cleft lip and palate. First, we talk with celebrity chef Graham Elliot, who was inspired to get involved by his son, who was born with a cleft lip; he talks about his family’s journey in learning about surgeries, treatments...

Duration: 00:38:49

Digging up a rich musical history with the Paramount Music Festival

Dave Hoekstra takes a look at the classic blues label Paramount Records, headquartered in Port Washington, Wisconsin in 1917 to the early ’30’s. He talks with Kris Raymond, director of the Paramount Music Association, about the history of the label, home to vital recordings from artists like Son House and Ma Rainey and the festival itself, which features over 25 performances over three days from the likes of Billy Branch, ‘Chief’ Eddy Clearwater and more. Award-winning blues artist Cathy...

Duration: 00:41:14

Chicago Characters: Roman Brach and the last of the newsstands

Dave Hoekstra visits with an old neighborhood friend, Roman Brach, who runs a newsstand at 1555 W. Division Street in Wicker Park. They talk about the history of the neighborhood and the precarious placement of a Nelson Algren statue across the street from the newsstand, how the business has changed with the death of the written word, his own journey from landing at Ellis Island as a boy in the early 50’s, and more.

Duration: 00:21:36

The Shake ‘Em on Downs thrive on the classic ‘girl group’ sound

Dave Hoekstra welcomes the Shake ‘Em on Downs, who pay tribute to the great groups of the 60’s and defining diva voices of today. We hear some classic hits from groups like The Supremes and The Ronettes, and talk to producer/drummer/manager Jeff Phillipe about the process of putting the band together, and what inspired him to do so. The girls talk about their musical backgrounds and what and individual voice can add to an ensemble, the art of naming a […]

Duration: 00:40:01

Carlene Carter talks working with Mellencamp, growing up in the Carter Family: “We had as much as we could have of a normal life”

Dave Hoekstra visits with country music royalty, as Carlene Carter joins the show to talk about her new album with John Mellencamp, Sad Clowns and Hillbillies. She discusses how her longest-running musical collaboration with Mellencamp came to fruition and growing up and performing as the daughter of country legends June Carter and Carl Smith (and the step-daughter of Johnny Cash), and more.

Duration: 00:19:57

Yoshi Sekiguchi’s improbable journey as the “Japanese Hank Williams”

Dave Hoekstra visits with Yoshi Sekiguchi, known as the “Japanese Hank Williams” for bringing American country music to post-World War II Japan. Yoshi talks about what drew him to artists like Hank Williams and Marty Robbins and, as a singer, getting the music to resonate with Japanese audiences, starting his family and relocating to the United States, where he found work as a graphic designer for Hugh Hefner with Playboy in Chicago, and much more. They’re joined by guitarist Dr. […]

Duration: 00:39:13

Re-imagining the Disney Birthplace: “There’s a deep history with Chicago and Walt Disney”

Dave Hoekstra talks with Emmett Broderick, graphic designer for Kane County Cougars, and Brent Young and Dina Benadon of Super 78 Studios in Los Angeles, who are the driving forces behind the effort to restore the Walt Disney Birthplace house at 2156 N. Tripp in Chicago’s Hermosa neighborhood.

Duration: 00:20:51

Take me out with the crowd: Dale and LuAnn Klein explore America’s ballparks

Dave Hoekstra talks with ballpark enthusiasts Dale and LuAnn Klein, who have spent more than 30 years travelling the country visiting over 330 Minor League and 50 MLB stadiums. They talk about what they love in a ballpark experience, how an impromptu game in Nashville in the 80’s led to their three-decade run driving around in a series of Dodge Caravans and taking in America’s fields of summer, and more

Duration: 00:22:15

Video and audio: Music with The Sylvies – a true family affair

Dave Hoekstra welcomes the ten member lineup of the The Sylvies to the studio for some live music and a conversation on their origins in the creole flavor of Cane River, Louisiana, the subsequent 30 years of performing a rich catalog of American music and the ins and outs of being a real, touring family band.

Duration: 00:48:57

The voice behind ‘The Archies’, Ron Dante: “I’m so lucky, I’m creating new memories every day”

Dave Hoekstra visits with musician and producer Ron Dante, who’s coming to town with the Happy Together Tour at the Silver Creek Event Center at Four Winds New Buffalo on Friday, August 11. Dante takes us through his long career in the music business that started with getting picked to be the voice behind The Archies by legendary producer Don Kirshner, how he met Barry Manilow and worked on some of his most famous recordings, an unlikely stint publishing the […]

Duration: 00:26:32

Veterans for Peace and the ‘Power to Peace’ Festival: “Our overall mission is to have a vision of a world without war”

Dave Hoekstra previews the upcoming 1st Annual Power to Peace Festival, a music festival and convention produced by Veterans for Peace, slated for August 9-13 at the Palmer House Hilton, featuring a concert at the Vic Theatre on 8/11 with the likes of Watermelon Slim and Maggie Brown, and a performance at the Copernicus Center on 8/13 with Jackson Browne. Veterans for Peace Executive Director Michael McPhearson and festival organizer Miles ‘Megaciph’ Thomas talk about their individual...

Duration: 00:43:45

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