Over the last 25+ years, the legendary Chuck Berry, an inarguable architect of rock n' roll and known worldwide for hits like "Johnny B. Goode" and "Roll Over Beethoven," had been working on what would become his final album. The aptly-titled Chuck is his first studio record since 1979 and was finished prior to his death this past March. The LP features current rock staples like Gary Clark Jr., Nathaniel Rateliff and Rage Against The Machine's Tom Morello alongside members of his family, including son Charles Jr., who had already built himself a successful career in IT, but had virtually zero music experience, before joining his father's band in the early 2000's. This week, Charles Jr. remembers 16RPM records, his mother's vinyl collection and his dad's guitars over the years, plus we discuss his own vinyl buying habits and why this final album took over a generation to complete. He also talks about the memories he's made through his father's music with his own son, Charles III, including their recent appearance together on The Tonight Show. The album Chuck is available on Dualtone Records wherever you buy music; go to ChuckBerry.com for more info. SPONSORS: Vinyl Me, Please; Pinwheel Records; Vinyl For A Cause; Flipbin.
Born in Italy and raised in the English city of Oxford, Olivia Chaney is an acclaimed and classically-trained pianist/folk singer who -- thanks to a Twitter dialogue with Decemberists frontman Colin Meloy -- recently partnered with the group to form the side-project Offa Rex, providing a psychedelic motif to traditional British folk songs from as early as the 17th century. This week, Olivia talks about being intrigued by Bob Dylan's John Wesley Harding LP as a child, the vinyl care package she recently received from her label Nonesuch, opening shows for the legendary Robert Plant, the song selection process for Offa Rex's debut album The Queen Of Hearts, how our discussion has potentially influenced her to record direct to analog from now on and how cassette tapes on family road trips not only formed her earliest musical memories, but also became the focus for the cover of her debut album, 2015's The Longest River. Visit both oliviachaney.net and offarex.co for music, social media and more! SPONSORS: Vinyl Me, Please; Pinwheel Records; Vinyl For A Cause; Flipbin.
As one of indie-rock's busiest mastering engineers, TW Walsh has tackled almost 1,000 different projects, including releases for Sufjan Stevens, Ben Gibbard and The Shins. He's also had a longtime friendship and working alliance with former Vinyl Emergency guest David Bazan, writing and performing on albums for Pedro The Lion, Headphones and most recently Lo Tom, as Walsh and Bazan are joined by Starflyer 59's Jason Martin and Trey Many. As Lo Tom's debut full-length was released last month by Barsuk, and his newest solo effort Terrible Freedom came out in April, Walsh joins us to discuss his father's extensive record collection, the future of mastering in the age of digital DIY, how the benefits of streaming have prevented albums from growing on us, Elvis Costello's vast and diverse discography, whether Walsh will continue to press vinyl on his own and how he became the subject of one of Bazan's best-known lyrics. Visit twwalsh.com to buy his releases on vinyl or digitally, and pick up Lo Tom's new album from Barsuk.com or wherever you purchase music. You can also follow @LoTomLoTom on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. SPONSORS: Vinyl Me, Please; Pinwheel Records; Vinyl For A Cause; Flipbin.
Original Violent Femmes drummer Victor DeLorenzo and his Nineteen Thirteen bandmate/cellist Janet Schiff discuss their own relationships with vinyl over the years, the unique sounds they're creating as a portable two-piece band and how a chance meeting at a diner spawned their musical kinship. Janet recalls "inventing" her own cello as a child, spinning records in her makeshift basement roller rink and whether or not to buy your bandmate's classic LP while he's in the record store with you, while Victor talks about the iconic artwork of the Femmes' self-titled debut and sets the record straight on their now legendary gig opening for The Pretenders at Milwaukee's Oriental Theatre in 1981, plus how it feels to have sports fans in packed stadiums around the world clapping along with his seminal percussion on "Blister In The Sun." Check out their two most recent albums, Music For Time Travel and The Dream, on Spotify and visit nineteenthirteen.com for upcoming gigs, their social media and more!
Despite vinyl's comeback, selling it online as a small, independent label is an uphill battle; Now imagine doing so door-to-door. As former Director of Operations for G.E.D. Soul Records, there were times when Nashville native David Guy would do just that: visit record stores across the country unannounced, selling funky 45's and adding to his own vast record collection along the way.
Currently, David is a hard-working bassist for hire, having spent time in many G.E.D. Soul projects like The Coolin' System and DeRobert & The Half-Truths -- as well as Time Is Tight, a Booker T. & The MG's tribute act -- before joining up with Amanda Shires last year, touring behind her 2016 album My Piece Of Land and playing some of the largest shows he's ever done, opening for Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit.
With even more excitement coming soon (Amanda and her band hit Red Rocks next month and film a set for PBS' Austin City Limits in a few weeks), David discusses some of his recent soul jazz finds on vinyl, the remarkable history of United Record Pressing's Motown Suite, which albums he picks up for Amanda while on tour, how race can wrongfully decide who reaches a wider audience, and much more. Follow David's record collection and life on the road via Instagram @davidandguy, check upcoming tour dates at AmandaShiresMusic.com and pick up some of David's releases via GEDSoulRecords.com!
Despite dubbing themselves a "baby band" when comparing their short history in the music business to those that have championed their work, Muscle Shoals, Alabama siblings Lydia and Laura Rogers have a strong connection to the history and romanticism of vinyl records. From putting on mini-concerts for each other on their parents' waterbed -- in sync with Highway 101 and Linda Ronstadt albums -- to Jack White recording and putting the duo to vinyl for the first time, the Secret Sisters' love for the medium matches their undeniable devotion to the art of songwriting. Since that first Third Man seven-inch, they've continued to work with producers who eye authenticity as an integral part of their aesthetic: the legendary T. Bone Burnett, current Nashville staple Dave Cobb and most recently Brandi Carlile, who helmed the Sisters' emotional new album You Don't Own Me Anymore, a title that speaks volumes to the trials and tribulations of heartache, bankruptcy and professional distress that nearly killed the Sisters' career since their last record. Today, Lydia and Laura sit down to discuss touring United Record Pressing and watching their first vinyl release being pressed, why vinyl continues to be the measurement by which the Sisters gauge how well their own albums sound, how You Don't Own Me Anymore's exemplary cover art is a familial response to their recent struggles, and some stellar stories involving Levon Helm, Fiona Apple, Elton John and human-sized catfish. Visit SecretSistersBand.com for tour dates, social media and more.