Thursday, December 30, 2021

THROWBACK THURSDAY: Happy Birthday John Hartford

Eighty four years ago today, December 30, 1937, in New York City (New York City????!!?) a boy named John Hartford was born. His family soon moved to St. Louis, where young John grew up watching the boats along the Mississippi (he'd later work as a towboat pilot on the Upper Mississippi and Illinois rivers) and listening to the Grand Ol' Opry on the radio.

He'd grow up to become one of the finest hillbilly instrumentalists (guitar, fiddle, mandolin), singers and songwriters of the late 20th Century. 

Most of us first became familiar with Hartford after a little song of his, having something to do with rolling up his sleeping bag, became Glen Campbell's first solo hit. Soon after that Hartford became a regular on the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour as well as the short-lived Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour.

Here are Hartford and Campbell performing that song on tv:

But Hartford quickly proved that he was no one-hit wonder. Though no other song of his ever became nearly as famous as "Gentle on My Mind," and his albums weren't exactly commercial smashes, in the 1970s he made some of finest country and bluegrass music around. His 1971 album Aereo-Plain, recorded with Norman Blake, Vassar Clements, Tut Taylor and Randy Scruggs should be considered a classic.

This is a later career (1999) song about New Mexico's most celebrated troubled youth:

Hartford died of cancer in 2001. His last hurrah was his appearance in the still amazing soundtrack of O Brother Where Art Thou? and the subsequent concert film, Down From the Mountain for which he served as MC as well as a performer:

Finally, here is my favorite Hartford song of all time, In Tall Buildings. 

Happy birthday and RIP, Gentle John.

Sunday, December 26, 2021


Sunday, December 26, 2021
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell 101.1 FM
Email me during the show! terrell(at)

Here's my playlist :

OPENING THEME: Let It Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Your Love Belongs Under a Rock by The Dirtbombs
Asking For More by The Grawks
Freaks in Uniform by Horrorpops
Naked Girl Falling Down the Stairs by The Cramps
Homemade Pie by Johnny Dowd
Gimme Germs by The Monsters
Blue Gene Vincent by Havana 3 a.m.
Snake Drive by R.L. Burnside with The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
The Lowlife by Nick Curran & The Lowlifes
You're a Moron by The Control Freaks
Psychedelic Baby by Rodd & The Librettos

Killing Me by Dead Moon
Bamboo Bimbo by Devo
It'll Chew You Up and Spit You Out by Concrete Blonde
Slow Boy by Kim Gordon & J. Mascis
Acme in the Afternoon by Degurutieni
Sugar Sugar by The Barbarellatones
I Walked All Night by The Embers
Wine by James Luther Dickinson

Crypt by Night Beats
Guy Like Me by Wolfy & The Bat Cubs
Come and Have a Go If You Think You're Hard Enough by The Mekons
The Lung Song by Old Time Relijun
All My Life by Howlin' Wolf
Ol' 55 by Frank Zappa with Tom Waits

I'm Shakin' by The Blasters
Shivers Down My Spine by King Khan & The Shrines
Insurrection Blues (Chickens Come Home to Roost) by Corey Harris
Green Shirt by Elvis Costello
Distant Fingers by Patti Smith
Dreaming My Dreams With You by Waylon Jennings
Broken Butterflies by Lucinda Williams
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

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Wednesday, December 22, 2021

WACKY WEDNESDAY: A Very Golden Throat Christmas


In these troubled times, it's extremely important to embrace our most cherished Christmas traditions. Such as celebrities who have no business singing crooning corny Christmas songs.

In case you forgot, here's what a Golden Throat is, ere is how I've explained it before:

Back in the '80s and '90s, when Rhino Records was actually a cool label, they released a series of albums called Golden Throats. These nutball compilations featured movie and TV stars, sports heroes and every stripe of cheesy celebrity singing ham-fisted versions of songs they had no business singing. Pop tunes, rock 'n' roll hits, country song, whatever. Nothing was sacred and nothing was safe from the Golden Throats. 

Because of the exposure from the Rhino series, some of these unintentionally hilarious songsters became notorious and ironically hip. Think William Shatner -- the Elvis of the Golden Throats! -- and his over-the-top renditions of "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" and "Mr. Tambourine Man."

So let's start off this Golden Throat Christmas Special with this turkey from Walter Brennan:

Christmas on the Ponderosa was always special when Pa Cartwright started to sing

What's Christmas without David Hasselhoff?

Et tu, Seth?

And let's go home for the holidays with the always poignant William Shatner, aided and abetted here by ... Billy Gibbons???????

Merry Christmas! And find more Golden Throat action HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE

Sunday, December 19, 2021


Sunday, December 19, 2021
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell 101.1 FM
Email me during the show! terrell(at)

Here's my playlist :

OPENING THEME: Let It Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Santa Claus by The Sonics
She Said Yeah by Larry Williams
Long Way Down by The Ar-Kaics
Once Upon a Time (in Your Mind) by Mal Thursday
I Didn't Know I Was Dead by Negativland
Abstract Blues by Kim Gordon & J Mascis
Grass Jeans by Kim Gordon
Get Me by Dinosaur Jr.
Santa Claus Has Got the AIDS This Year by Tiny Tim

Out for Blood by Johnny Dowd
Too Good to Be Blue by Trixie & The Train Wrecks
Misshapen Head by The Grawks
Ride by Ty Segall
Funky But Chic by David Johansen
Faith in Love by The Lostines 
Armenia City in the Sky by Petra Haden
Little Drummer Boy by Joan Jett

Must Be Santa by Bob Dylan
Don't Worry Kyoko (Mummy's Only Looking For Her Hand in the Snow) by Yoko Ono
Scumbag by Frank Zappa, The Mothers of Invention Yoko Ono & John Lennon
We Start the Fire by Old Time Relijun
Nail My Dick to the Wall by The Toy Trucks
Punk Rock Retirement Plan by Legendary Shack Shakers
A Poundland Christmas by Wild Billy Childish & The Musicians of the British Empire
My Insurance Man (from Bathtubs Over Broadway)

Almost Persuaded #2 by Ben Colder
Come Closer by Honshu Wolves
Jacob's Ladder by Michael Hurley
Girls by Eleni Mandell
Give Me That Old Time Religion by Joseph Spence
Christmas in the Trenches by John McCutcheon
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

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Thursday, December 16, 2021


On this day four years ago, December 16, 2017, we lost a wonderful American voice, Dorothy Jacqueline Keely, better known as Keely Smith. She was 89.

Keely, born in Norfolk, Virginia, became famous for singing in her husband Louis Prima's band. She met and began recording with Prima in 1949. They married in 1953 (and divorced in 1960.)

Onstage, besides her singing ability, Keely was best known for her hilarious deadpan expression and often appearing irritated at her husband's highly animated antics. Her obit in the New York Times says, "Her coolness amid Mr. Prima’s chaos cemented them as one of Las Vegas’s premier attractions and foreshadowed the style of Sonny & Cher in the 1960s."

I never thought of Louie and Keely in terms of Sonny & Cher, but, whatever ... Check out this 1960 clip from The Ed Sullivan Show.

I'm not sure where this performance was, but Prima & Smith's version of "That Old Black Magic" is one of their best-loved tunes.

Keely and Louie appeared in the Robert Mitchum 1958 classic Thunder Road. In this clip, Mitchum doesn't appreciate the loudmouth drunk whose obnoxious laughing nearly drowns out Keely's performance of "Won't You Come Home Bill Bailey."

In the mid '60s she released Keely Smith Sings the John Lennon—Paul McCartney Songbook, a collection of Beatles tunes. Here's a swingin' version of "Please Please Me."

But this was her first solo hit, from 1957. Keely, wherever you are, we wish you love.

Wednesday, December 08, 2021

WACKY WEDNESDAY: Rocking Madison Avenue

Bob Dylan was a spokesman for his generation.

The Pepsi Generation.

According to Billboard, his commercial, which debuted during the 2009 Superbowl, also featured rapper Will I. Am, is "the only piece of recorded music history that features the writers of `Visions of Johanna' and `My Humps,' with the latter rapping all over the Planet Waves cut `Forever Young.' The ensuing Super Bowl ad attempts to float the similarities between the two artists, mostly in that they both wear cool sunglasses. Doing it all for the Pepsi."

And unlike Michael Jackson, Dylan didn't even have to catch his hair on fire to do it.

But this hardly was the only t.v. commercial Dylan licensed his songs for or actually appeared in ads for Victoria's Secret, Chrysler, Apple iPods, Chobani yogurt, Google, his own brand of whiskey called Heaven's Door, and probably others I'm forgetting.

And he's not alone.

The world of rock 'n' roll tends to look down at rockers prostituting their pure art for the filthy lucre of the corporate world. In the '80s, John Fogerty preached that sermon in his song "Soda Pop", as did Neil Young in "This Note's for You." I also remember, around this era, Paul Simon on Late Night With David Letterman talking about Simon & Garfunkel being approached by Midas Muffler execs pitching an ad in which "The Sounds of Silence" would be changed to "The Sounds of Midas." 

Paul & Artie didn't bite. But Dylan and many others took big bites out of the corporate apple.

Back in the mid '80s, Lou Reed tried hard to make Honda motor scooters look tough. Anthony DeCurtis wrote in his 2017 biography of Reed, wrote

That Reed, a serious motorcycle aficionado, would not have been caught dead riding a scooter in real life seemed beside the point. At times, he could be defensive about the ad—“Who else could make a scooter hip?” he challenged one journalist. But he also cited more pragmatic reasons for his decision, and mentioned Andy Warhol, an early mentor of the Velvet Underground, as a model for his thinking. “I can’t live in an ivory tower like people would like me to,” Reed said. “I used to watch Andy do something for TV Guide or Absolut Vodka … When our equipment broke, that’s how it got replaced. We didn’t turn around and tell Andy we can’t touch that money because it came from doing a commercial. 

But Open Culture in 2013 said "The spot made a huge splash on Madison Avenue. Its influence could be seen all over the next generation of commercials. But it didn’t sell many scooters."

The piece quotes ad man and author Randall Rothenberg's book Where the Suckers Moon: The Life and Death of an Advertising Campaign: “For all its impact on the advertising industry the Lou Reed commercial did little for Honda. Young Americans had little interest in scooters, no matter how hip they were made out to be.”

But Lou wasn't alone, shilling for Honda in the 80s. Check out Devo's contribution:

And Iggy Pop apparently had a lust for auto insurance 

But it didn't start in the '80s.

The only disappointing thing about The Rolling Stones when I saw them play in Austin last month is that they didn't perform their classic Rice Krispies jingle from the mid '60s:

And in 1967, the same year as The Who Sell Out, The Who actually sold out!

Sunday, December 05, 2021


Sunday, December 5, 2021
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell 101.1 FM
Email me during the show! terrell(at)

Here's my playlist :

OPENING THEME: Let It Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Too Cool to Dance by The Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band
Murder City Nights by Radio Birdman
What Happens When You Turn the Devil Down by Mystery Lights
Never Look Back by Night Beats
Black Metal by Reverend Beat-Man & Izobel Garcia
Gimme Germs by The Monsters
Johnny Voodoo by Empress of Furs
Sally Was a Good Old Girl by Shocking Blue
My Bathroom by Patt Stanton Gjonola

Some Dispute Over T-Shirt Sales by Butthole Surfers
Oklahoma by P
Born Stupid by Paul Leary
Don't Want You Either by Mal Thursday
Castrati by Pocket FishRmen
Fire Engine by 13th Floor Elevators
Some Conversations You Just Don't Need to Have by Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears
Garbageman by William Shatner

Whiskey in the Jar by The Pogues & The Dubliners
Whatcha Gonna Do (When Your Baby Leaves You) by Chuck Willis
St. James Infirmary by Billy Lee Riley
Alligator Waltz by Rockin' Sidney
Everybody Calls Me Crazy by Clifton Chenier
I Am the Walrus by Frank Zappa
Yes We Have Bananas by Louis Prima
Five Guys Named Moe by Louis Jordan
Any Else by Negativland

Monday Morning Blues by Mississippi John Hurt
Marina by Honshu Wolves
Love Me by Elvis Presley
Sweet Mama by Alto Street
Party While You Still Can by Shinyribs
I Pity the Fool by Bobby "Blue" Bland
Muriel by Eleni Mandell
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

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Thursday, December 02, 2021

THROWBACK THURSDAY: Remembering Odetta

 On this day, just 13 years ago, December 2, 2008, a very powerful voice in American folk music went silent. Odetta Holmes, who was known to the world simply by her first name, died at the age of 77.

She was born in Birmingham, Alabama in 1930. According to The Washington Post:

After showing musical skill at a young age, she began classical vocal training that developed into ambition for a concert singing career. Her mother hoped she would follow the racially groundbreaking career of opera singer Marian Anderson. ...

After graduating from high school, Odetta followed her mother into work as a domestic worker. She also studied music in night classes at Los Angeles City College and found choral work in the West Coast touring company of the musical "Finian's Rainbow."

The show took her to San Francisco in 1949, and it was there that she was exposed to the folk music scene.

Odetta, who came to be known as the "Voice of the Civil Rights Movement," sang “I’m on My Way” on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during Dr. Martin Luther King's March on Washington in 1963. Also in 1963, she appeared on television with President John F. Kennedy on a nationally televised civil rights special called "Dinner With the President." She marched with King for voting rights in the Selma-to-Montgomery march in 1965. 

And she played at the Thirsty Ear Festival at Bonanza Creek Movie Ranch in 2001. That's the only time I ever got to see her perform live. 

Bob Dylan said in a Playboy interview just a couple of years ago " Bob Dylan, who said, "The first thing that turned me on to folk singing was Odetta. I heard a record of hers Odetta Sings Ballads and Blues in a record store, back when you could listen to records right there in the store. Right then and there, I went out and traded my electric guitar and amplifier for an acoustical guitar, a flat-top Gibson."

Here's Odetta  singing a chilling tune on Belgian TV in the '60s:

I believe this is the very first Odetta  song I ever heard back in the '60s, Woodie Guthrie's "Pastures of Plenty":

Skip ahead a few decades and here's Odetta with a full band singing Lead Belly's "Jim Crow Blues" with a full band. (Trigger warning for sensitive right-wingers: This song could contain traces of Critical Race Theory. Take note and protect the children):

In the spirit of the Christmas season, this is from Odetta's appearance on the Ed Sullivan show on Christmas night in 1960:

And here is a song I vividly remember from the time I saw Odetta at the Thirsty Ear Festival in 2001. She's backed here by The Holmes Brothers. 

Let it shine!


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