A good year…if I do say so myself. We’re going to count down the top ten of the year 1952…in pop, country, and R&B. The music that year featured sounds that portended the birth of rock ‘n roll, the blossoming of the Golden Age of Country, and the droll mainstream charts couldn’t have been more ripe for steamrolling. Webb Pierce and Hank Williams dominated the country charts while the white bread pop charts found Al Martino, Johnny Ray, and Rosemary Clooney. But it was the R&B charts that mirrored the emerging energy of swing, rhythm and blues, and rock with the likes of The Clovers, Ruth Brown, and The Five Royales. The DOW Jones average closed at an all-time high of (a whopping) 269.86. Tune in for the countdown. 67 years in the rear-view on Sonoma County Community Radio.
Turkey leftovers? No, country leftovers. “…and I fell asleep with a troubled dream and dreamed I road on the hellbound train.” Just one line from one track from our Friday morning Deeper Roots show which focuses on some country songs ‘from the edge’. An eclectic blend of sometimes morose and other times kitschy stories of mid-century country singers looking for the next “Big Bad John” with stories of engine mishaps, disturbances of mind and relationships, and the general consensus of lyrical country that ‘the world is a monster’. Hillbillies, rabble rousers, and would-be crooners give us those tormented testimonies of country music. Join Dave Stroud for a very unusual collection of sounds from the archives of the fifties and sixties, when country blossomed; the songs he’s going to feature had a hard time cracking the Top 100 because the stories told are ‘out there’, even for country music.
November kicks off with a party at our house. Some rare R&B nuggets, some classic old time country and honky-tonk, and a little bit of the New Orleans and house party themes to kick off the morning here on Deeper Roots. House parties, rent parties, and dance hall jamborees are celebrated by Bob Wills, Babs Gonzales, Little Esther, Jackie Brenston, and Dale Watson. We’ll also hear from Willie, T-Bone, and Merle on a Friday morning show that brings a little bit of light into the Sonoma County after weeks of trepidation from the fires. Please join Dave Stroud broadcasting live from downtown Santa Rosa.
A last minute playlist…some gentle sounds for listeners who’ve had a tough week here in Sonoma County. Songs of reflection take center stage on Deeper Roots where the scheduled playlist was a bit too frivolous to put on the air. With everyone focused on rebuilding, rehoming, and getting their power back as well as building a support network for those impacted through lost homes and property. And here’s to the first responders, the city and county officials who get it right this time…join Dave Stroud on a Saturday morning in October in a county still reeling from the firestorm of two years back. Easy listening is the order of the day.
We’ve got an eclectic collection of sounds today as we take on yet another free form collection of soul, folk, doo wop, R&B, country, blues, and Americana on Deeper Roots. Listen in as we spend time with Billy Ward & The Dominoes, Etta James, Tom Waits, The Harlan County Four, and Buck Owens. The show features mini-themes of Sonoma County, Bakersfield, and birthdays….nothing too political, nothing to lovey dovey…just a collection of fun sounds from some recent Americana talents and some legends, all for you, all on KOWS Community Radio this week, streaming to the world on www.freespeechnobull.com.
From the hills of Appalachia to the urban church pews of the East, North, South, and West…we’ve got camp meeting celebrations, old time religion, with biblical strains where voices raised above the fray brought solace to the masses. And speaking of voices, tune in for some of the very best gospel spanning bluegrass, tradition, soul, and black gospel from heaven’s radio. The Davis Sisters, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Aretha, The Blue Sky Boys, and Ralph Stanley are on the docket alongside The Carter Family, John Fogerty and Willie and Bobbie Nelson. Some brand new Americana surfaces to keep the kettle warm in the kitchen…Friday mornings with a dash of Billy Sunday’s crowd gatherings. It’s a Sunday meeting on a Friday morning here on Sonoma County Community Radio.
This morning’s show will be a collection of Elvis covers; songs that hit the charts for Elvis from 1956 into the break of the 1970s. Mostly number ones, but some repeated favorites, all covered by a cross-section of his contemporaries and those from another generation. We’ll have everyone from Santo & Johnny and Bobby Gentry to Rosie Flores and John Prine putting forward covers of Elvis Presley treats. We’ve also got a version of Heartbreak Hotel by Hanni El Khabib, a rare piece by rocker and session man (not bluesman) Robert Johnson, Billy Burnette’s bluegrass, and some C. J. Chenier to keep the eclectic blend alive. We’re on Friday mornings at 9 Pacific on KOWS and Friday evenings at 9 Pacific on KWTF.
Songs that were personal. Vignettes about the real world. A study in memories but on a deeper level where one wrestles the blood out of the words; and his were usually the simplest of words. Economy of words means a broader vision. That’s what I think of when I think of Guy Clark’s songs. From his sprawling narratives to the trapdoors he leaves you when he’s finished, his music was a little slice of melodic nuance laced with words that mattered. Every one. This week’s show won’t beat around the bush; we’ll just put them out there to reflect on and give a little bit of thanks that we have them. We’ll hear from Emmylou Harris, Jerry Jeff Walker, Steve Earle, Vince Gill, and a few nuggets from Guy himself.
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.