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We Appreciate Your Enthusiasm on WGN-TV Today

I was a guest on the Midday News this morning, and interviewed by Dan Ponce about We Appreciate Your Enthusiasm. Check it out here.


The Tubes: a Preview

Debuting tomorrow on my Steve Dahl Network podcast: my interview with Fee Waybill of the Tubes.

I’ve loved the Tubes for decades, dating back to when my impressionable young mind was utterly destroyed by “White Punks on Dope” and “Mondo Bondage.”

The band will be in Lincolnshire next month (Viper Alley on October 26), in what amounts to a can’t-miss show. The Tubes changed the rules for live rock and roll performances, taking the piss out of the medium well before it was fashionable to do so.

Fee was kind enough to hang on the phone for close to an hour, and we talked about the band’s long history, their mid-80s collapse, the moment when they first encountered John Candy, the worst venue in Chicago, and why Dave Grohl could be an honorary Tube.

If you’re not as familiar with the Tubes, here’s a chance to catch up before the interview hits tomorrow. Get ready to scroll: here comes a bunch of YouTube clips …

White Punks on Dope

My first exposure to the band. This song was the gateway drug (groan) that led to further discovery.

Don’t Touch Me There

“I love your salty taste.

I love your fingertips.

When I reach for your waist …”

Dirty, retro, and as good as the Tubes get:

She’s a Beauty

You know this one; the band’s commercial peak. The once-ominpresent-on-MTV video features Fee Waybill as a P.T. Barnum-esque carnival barker.

Talk To Ya Later

“As I mentioned near the close of the last record, this record you are now playing is another example of the completion backward principle.”

As I mentioned in the interview, this track stands as one of rock’s great “kiss off songs.”

Amnesia / Mr. Hate

Two of the best songs from the band’s finest album (The Completion Backward Principle)

“The Fishin’ Musician” on SCTV

We talked about this legendary TV appearance in the interview; a classic for both John Candy and the Tubes.

“What Do You Want From Life” (live)

An always-anticipated descent into madness during the Tubes’ live show.

See you on October 26th.


A quick Candlebox primer

This week on my show, I’m joined by Candlebox singer Kevin Martin.

The Seattle-born band saturated alternative and rock radio throughout the 90s with songs like lighter-flicking power ballad “Far Behind”:

“You” was another big Candlebox hit. Like “Far Behind,” it too came from the band’s self-titled 1993 debut:

Their second album, Lucy, wasn’t nearly as successful as their first, but it sold well enough to achieve gold status (over 500,000 units shifted). “Simple Lessons” is the first song on the album:

Less than two years after the band released their third album, Happy Pills, they broke up. The move was made primarily to get out of their record deal with Maverick.

The band got back together in 2006, and has since released two albums, including this year’s Love Stories & Other Musings.

“Believe in It,” from Love Stories:

During the interview, Kevin and I talk about the band’s early days and lack of acceptance on the Seattle scene, the breakup, and the new album. Thanks for listening!




Candlebox (1993)

Lucy (1995)

Happy Pills (1998)

Into the Sun (2008)

Love Stories & Other Musings (2012)

Geoff Tate of Queensryche: a Primer

Geoff Tate from Queensryche joins me later this week on the James VanOsdol show. To prepare you for the interview (as well as for his two area shows at the beginning of May), I thought I’d offer up this Queensryche primer:

“Empire”-Title track from Queensryche’s commercial breakthrough album of the same name.

“Silent Lucidity”-An unlikely top ten hit for Queensryche. A power ballad that transcends the notion of power ballads; epic before the word became a cliche.

“Operation Mindcrime”-80s metal with lyrical substance and musical teeth. The “Mindcrime” album remains a defining moment for the band and for rock concept albums.

“The Lady Wore Black”-Here’s a live version of one of the band’s very first songs, originally heard on their self-titled debut (1982).

“Sliver”-Lead track from the American Soldier album (2009).

“Jet City Woman”-Boot-quality solo performance of the Queensryche song, recorded earlier this year.

A Thomas Dolby Primer

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Thomas Dolby checks in from the road this week on the James VanOsdol show.

Beyond his solo material, Dolby’s work can also be heard on a varied list of accomplishments, including the score to Howard the Duck and keyboards on Foreigner hits “Urgent” and “Waiting for a Girl Like You.” He also played at Live Aid with David Bowie, and on the Grammys with Stevie Wonder.

Dolby’s music career was put on hold for most of the 1990s and 00s, when he diverted his attention to his own company, Headspace. While there, he did impressive things like creating the technology for mobile phone ringtones.

If you’re in the Chicago area, Thomas Dolby will be taking his “Time Machine” tour to the Park West on April 5. In case you need a refresher on his music, here you go:

“She Blinded Me With Science”-The one that put him on the map (it’s a flat earth map, but a map nonetheless). SCIENCE!

“Europa and the Pirate Twins”-From The Golden Age of Wireless, which also includesShe Blinded Me With Science.”

“Airhead”-A fairly ridiculous song, but it has its charms (my pick from the same album, Aliens Ate My Buick, is a song called “Ability to Swing”). “She’s not an intellectual giant …”

“I Love You Goodbye”-We talked in the interview about Dolby’s ability to capture the American experience, and I specifically referenced this song.

“Nothing New Under the Sun”-From his most recent work, A Map of the Floating City. After my first few listens, I couldn’t stop playing it. It’s one of those “creeper songs” that insidiously plant themselves in the recesses of your brain and never leave.

From A Map of the Floating City, an insane video for “The Toadlickers.” I referenced the video specifically in the interview–here’s some helpful context.

“Hyperactive”-I loved this one as a kid. The video’s still a riot.

Smoking Popes/Josh Caterer: New interview coming Wednesday for the Steve Dahl Network

I just finished producing my latest podcast episode, featuring an interview with an old pal: Josh Caterer of Smoking Popes. Since I’ve interviewed Josh dozens of times, I decided to take a different angle with him–I asked him to prepare a top 5 list to share on the show.

The result? You’ve honestly gotta listen when the episode hits next week (update 3/1/12: it’s up!). I wasn’t necessarily surprised by the list he made, but I was really impressed with how passionate and articulate he was about the topic.

The interview clocked in at over an hour, and I swear it’s entertaining throughout.

In addition to talking about topics related to Josh’s top 5 list, we also talk about the band, Iggy Pop, Alkaline Trio, Morrissey, the academic credibility of Columbia College, and … Steve Dahl.

In the meantime, please follow these Popes links and support the band!

The band
The band on Twitter
Josh on Twitter

Butch Walker interview: New episode posted on the Steve Dahl Network

Butch Walker is one of the hardest-working guys in entertainment. He’s a successful solo artist, producer, author, and subject of a new documentary. He’s also a humble, congenial, funny guy to talk with.

On the latest episode of the James VanOsdol show on the Steve Dahl Network, I talked with Butch about his latest album (The Spade), the pervasive influence of Dexy’s Midnight Runners, his role as producer for the likes of Fall Out Boy and Pink, the Metallica factor in documentaries, his new autobiography (Drinking With Strangers), the first Kiss album he ever bought, and how Matthew McConaughey ended up in the video for “Synthesizers.”

The episode can be found here.

For more on Butch: