Radio Free 21 Club

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All new music from:
 Joe McGinty, Anna Coogan, Amy Allison, Peter Blegvad, Jody Harris, Peter Holsapple, Freedy Johnston, Dave Schramm, and Kate Jacobs, plus Nicholas Hill covers Kimberly Rew.

Presented by: Nicholas Hill

The Radio Free All Stars: Joe McGinty, David Mansfield, Jeremy Chatzky, Clem Waldmann, Mike McGinnis, Dave Schramm

Back at The Living Room in NYC for a wonderful night with new All Stars Clem Waldmann and the 100% unrehearsed Mike McGinnis (listen for the clarinet solo on Dave’s second gorgeous song). Joe McGinty was both guest and band. His songs are so many things at once, and his piano playing divine. We went country with Anna Coogan in from Ithaca — what a voice! — and Jody Harris showing his roots. Freedy flew in a bit of blues just as we were hitting the stage, and come to think of it more blues from Peter Blegvad. Kate is still developing her musical, and got Joe and Anna and Amy to sing with her. Nicholas sang Hey War Pig.

Dave Schramm, That Way (Dave Schramm) recorded live with the Radio Free All Stars; Hot Stove Music (BMI)

Peter Blegvad, The Way to Play the Blues (Peter Blegvad) performed and recorded by Peter; Copyright Control Peter Blegvad; live overdub by David Mansfield, National steel guitar.

Anna Coogan, Never Make Her Wait (Anna Coogan) recorded live with the Radio Free All Stars; Yeah Say Yeah Music (BMI)

Joe McGinty, D Train Rider (Joe McGinty); recorded live with the Radio Free All Stars; Tralfaz Music (ASCAP)

Kate Jacobs, There’s a Train (Kate Jacobs, arrangement by Andy Burton); recorded live with the Radio Free All Stars with vocals by Joe McGinty, Amy Allison, and Anna Coogan; Small Pond Music (BMI)

Peter Holsapple, The Donkey Song (Peter Holsapple) performed and recorded by Peter; Hospital Music (BMI) admin Bug Music

Amy Allison, Nightingale (Amy Allison); recorded live with the Radio Free All Stars; Shop Girl Songs (BMI) admin Bug Music

Jody Harris, One More Time (Jody Harris); recorded live with the Radio Free All Stars; Copyright Control Jody Harris

Freedy Johnston, I Really Miss Ya Blues (Freedy Johnston); performed and recorded by Freedy; Trouble Tree Music (BMI)

Dave Schramm, 3 A.M. Slant (Dave Schramm) recorded live with the Radio Free All Stars; Hot Stove Music (BMI)

Nicholas Hill, Hey War Pig (Kimberly Rew) recorded live with the Radio Free All Stars; Kate Jacobs and Anna Coogan, background vocals;

Joe McGinty, This Song Is Three Days Old (Joe McGinty); recorded live with the Radio Free All-Stars; Tralfaz Music (ASCAP)

Engineered by Jimi Zhivago, Steve Ha, Milton Ruis and Gaines LeGerve at The Living Room, NYC January 25, 2012

Special thanks to Jennifer Gilson and everyone at The Living Room.


Peter Blegvad, on The Way to Play the Blues:

A paean to the Stones – with a quote from John Cage as chorus. The song was an attempt to update the age-old musical question, expressed by the Bonzo Dog Doodah Band as “can blue men play the whites?”

And while we’re on the subject, let’s savour this description (below) by Benjamin Piekut of the play Rockgroup, written in 1965 by Amiri Baraka:

It featured “4 boys in whiteface” wearing “Beetle suits” in a band called The Crackers. The action of the play is relatively straightforward: a band is introduced, takes the stage, sets up, and performs a song (“White shit white shit white shit / hocus-pocus in the clouds allright”). After their brief concert, The Crackers bow to the effusive applause of the crowd, “dainty and faggish and removed from reality swaggering like toygirls.” As dollars rain down from above, the band collects the money and packs up their instruments; it is revealed that their “geetahs” were plugged into the rear end of a black man who had been slumped underneath a black cloth at the back of the stage during the performance. The man wears tawdry remnants of a showbiz career: “falling down conk and raggidy [sic] sequined stage evening clothes.” The Crackers place this secret source of their power into a travelling case, placating him with a little money, some “white powder,” and “then one of the white boys put on a lady outfit, and kiss him on lips, then nigger, he swoon dead away in box, and white boys carry him off with them.”

— from “October or Thermidor” in “Experimentalism Otherwise, The New York Avant-Garde and Its Limits” by Benjamin Piekut

Peter Holsapple on The Donkey Song:

About The Donkey Song — this tune’s from a couple years back, recorded at the old house. Just a guitar, a slide guitar and a vocal. I believe this was inspired by a news item. Nobody ever tells the donkey’s story. I figure, I’m an ass, so it behooves me to do that (rimshot).


Dave Schramm on That Way and Three A.M. Slant:

Why two songs? Couldn’t decide which one to do, so what the hey.

That Way is a list song. Kind of a snippy little number. A compendium of haughtiness and disdain. Didn’t know how it would all turn out. Thanks to the newly minted All-Stars for the groovy big rock band interpretation.

Three A.M. Slant was an instrumental until recently. Suppose it was meant to be cinematic, perhaps a soundtrack to some imaginary Italo-Western photoplay. The sudden Mike McGinnis nails it. Kills it even. Grazi.