The home page of the Western Swing Society describes western swing as “a division of the American phenomenon known as jazz [fusing] elements of musical roots…including blues, Dixieland, ragtime, big band, country, pop, and breakdowns.” That kind of explains why we revisit this genre so often here on Deeper Roots. What it has most in common with jazz is the use of improvisation; what it does try to do is to take things one step further: make it dance-able. The foot-tapping rhythm and the encouragement of participation drew audiences far and wide from the north, south, east and west. This week show meanders through some fun sounds including tracks Hank Penny, Milton Brown, Ocie Stockard, and (of course) Bob Wills. We’ll have some tribute songs and old standards for you on Sonoma County community radio.
A laid back Friday morning in store as we celebrate a century of America’s music with classics from every corner. Dave Stroud hosts with a potpourri of doo wop, gospel, rock, R&B, soul, and country wrapped up just for Deeper Roots listeners out there. We’ll be hearing from Johnny Cash, The Ravens, Mike Farris, (more than one) Bo Diddley, and The Neville Brothers as we watch the trees turn their late summer umber under warm Sonoma County September skies. Tune in for the very best, including The Living Sisters and The Andrews Sisters, side by side, this one time. Only on Community Radio because all other $$$ stations fail to play with heart.
Well, it’s about time. For being one of the premier blues women of the 20th century, we’ve been remiss in our coverage here on Deeper Roots. You can, however, check out our blog post Memphis Minnie on the Ice Box to prepare you for the music we’ve got for you this coming Friday. Not only will we share some classic tunes from Minnie and Kansas City Joe McCoy but we’ll be pairing much of them with contemporary covers including some special ones: the Alabama Shakes, Maria Muldaur, Precious Bryant, and Eilen Jewell (just to name a few). The article mentioned above is a well worn first hand observation of a Memphis Minnie performance published in the Chicago Defender in 1942, written by Langston Hughes. We’ve got enough to fill the room…and the airwaves, this coming Friday morning so here’s hoping you can drop in.
There have been some great Americana sounds released this year and there is no sense in ignoring them, certainly. In fact, you can tune into Sonoma County Community Radio each week for Blue Moon Americana, broadcasting Thursday mornings at 5am on KOWS and 9am on KWTF. We’ll be spending some time covering the covers of tradition and some from the contemporary well this week on Deeper Roots. Tune in for some great sounds…truly. Fun covers of blues, gospel, folk, country, and jazz from the likes of Whitehorse, Jesse Dayton, Steve Earle, Willie Nelson and Kristi Jean & Her Ne’er-Do-Wells. We’ll hear everything from Amazing Grace to Redneck Friend this week on Deeper Roots. Check it out this Saturday evening, a rebroadcast of a live show from the KOWS Cherry Street Historic District in Santa Rosa.
Gamblers, ramblers, casinos. Barstools, loaded dice, tumbling dice, poker hands, and the demon rum, and chance. Honky-tonks, Vegas, and craps…all for you on the country side. Join Dave Stroud for a high-falootin’ time on Deeper Roots as the demon chance teams up with casino country in music. We’ll walk the fine carpets of the Vegas casino as well as the sawdust floors of the country bar with performances by Buck Owens, Tex Williams, The Country Gentleman, and Jimmie Dolan. We’re heading out west to pay a little bit of an homage to the gaming side of the stories this week on Community Radio for Sonoma County. Hope you can join in.
It had to start somewhere. And it did. The music that inspired rock and roll also inspired the countless British Invasion groups that littered the charts beginning in the early-to-mid 60s. Mayall, The Yardbirds, and, of course, The Rolling Stones. The early years of the Stones found them playing covers of some of the great stateside R&B, blues, and soul classics. Our Deeper Roots show today feasts on the originals (as did Jagger, Richard and company) and brings you the seminal sounds of Chuck Berry, Muddy Waters, Solomon Burke, Arthur Alexander, and a host of others in our tribute to the music that was a fusion of blues, R&B, and soul. Music that made rock and roll the world music phenomenon that it was to become. Tune into Community Radio on Fridays for roots music.
Summer is here and so we’ll be celebrating those lazy, hazy, crazy days that come with it. We’re approaching the dog days, as they say, and that also means festivals, music, cool drinks, swimming gear, and lighter beers. This week’s show has us getting serious about summer songs: Elvis, Sam Cooke, The Chantels, Dolly Parton, Dave Brubeck, and just a touch of surf sounds from The Sandals. Summer winds, summer wages, summer rain, and summer love this week on Deeper Roots, recorded at the KOWS studios planted square in the Cherry Street District of Santa Rosa.
We’ll be serenading you with some island melodies, country tunes, and rock, all featuring the steel guitar, an instrument whose origins take us back to the late 19th and early 20th century invention by native Joseph Kekuku. The music this Friday features some early Hawaiian popular influences including Sol Ho’opi, Hoot Gibson, and King Nawah’s Hawaiians. The focus moves to mid-to late century greats featuring Pete Drake, Buddy Emmons, Buster Martin and Speedy West. The popularity of the ‘island sound’ in the early century brought us the sound of steel across many genres, including gospel, folk, blues, and country. Spend a couple of hours on an August morning in Sonoma County taking a journey from Hawaii to Forth Worth.
Mac Wiseman spoke with a roots music magazine in 2006, reflecting on his career in music. “Not to sound too critical, but the ‘bluegrass’ classification was the worst damned thing ever happened to me,” he observed. “Up until then I was getting as much airplay as Marty Robbins or Ray Price.” But it was his voice, those golden pipes, that will be remembered sweetly. In 1946 he moved to Knoxville and found a gig playing with country singer Molly O’Day on radio and in the studio recording that would catapult him into a career in bluegrass; first with Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs and then, Bill Monroe. We take some time to look at all sides of Mac’s music, from bluegrass to country and rock to pop. A truly American treasure.
One way to lounge about in the summer heat is to go directly at it with songs that complement the temperature from different angles (and genres). Tune in Saturday afternoon for a fresh look as Dave sits in for Steady Eddie once more with some rockabilly with Jimmy Simmons and Billy Lee Riley, hot country biscuits from Asleep at the Wheel and Al Dexter, hot soul stew from James Brown and Major Lance, and some humid yet playful pieces from Fats Waller and Lee Press-on & The Nails. We’ll also be taking a drone flight above some Mason-Dixon Line tradition from the very distant past with the Old South Quartette (featuring Polk Miller), and Victoria Spivey and Don Flemons. It’s summer and the heat will be with us for some weeks; too hot to handle? Too darn hot? Too hot for (fill in the blank)? Join this hot little collection in a special fill-in on a Saturday afternoon in Sonoma County. At least it’s a dry heat.