Brandon Nelson's blog

  • Thu
    Sep 04
    7:00 pm -
    8:00 pm
  • Sun
    Sep 07
    7:00 am -
    8:00 am

naked vocals

this week ifreddies a fun idea i got from someone's facebook post. It was a link to an a-cappella performance of david bowie and freddie mercury (well, not technically a-cappella, but just the isolated vocal tracks) singing "under pressure." It sounds like another (more silent, mysterious) song.

so, of course, i was suddenly inspired (as is my wont every week) like a lightning bolt of what (in my tired years) passes for creativity, and i put an entire hour show together featuring only naked vocal tracks.

you're gonna hear the amazing textures of voices like the supremes, marvin gaye, the beach boys, and especially freddie mercury and queen.

  • Thu
    Aug 21
    7:00 pm -
    8:00 pm
  • Sun
    Aug 24
    7:00 am -
    8:00 am

the women of 2004

10 years ago...listen to the women who were making music by adding their voices to the eclectic sounds of 2004.

ani difrancothere were the delicate whispers the french chill group, air....

the brazen attitude of new york's ani difranco [pictured]....

the mad stomps of omaha's tilly & the wall....

the twangy insights of los angele's rilo kiley....

the fascinating edge of canadian singer feist....

the serene heart of welsh singer jem....

and the divine bliss and chill of denmark's bliss....

  • Thu
    Jul 24
    7:00 pm -
    8:00 pm
  • Sun
    Jul 27
    7:00 am -
    8:00 am

road trip!

road trip!

umphrey's mcgeetime to get in the car and drive to des moines to see the musicians' musicians, umphrey's mcgee. well, that's what i'll be doing. and i'm bringing you with me.

i'll start the show on the road, and on the way i'll play some new tunes by elbow, and finally, i'll bring the microphone right onto the stage where you can hear their final set live. ;)

  • Sun
    Jul 13
    7:00 am -
    8:00 am

best new music

coldplaygreat new music from coldplay (pictured), and also jack white, natalie merchant, the black keys, broken bells, a stunning new song from robert plant (yes, him!) and a new song by a wonderful band you should hear: radio moscow.

get up sunday morning and turn on your radio to turn on the best music from this year.

here's the playlist

  • Thu
    Jun 26
    7:00 pm -
    8:00 pm
  • Sun
    Jun 29
    7:00 am -
    8:00 am

1984

30 years ago the synths were tinny, the drum machines were mechanical, mullets seemed to make sense, and the music was so full of reverb it was hard to even hear. but i found an hour's worth of wonderful and historically significant music from 1984 to make your this week's show wonderful and historically significant.

don henleythis week's 1984 show features 2 songs that were banned (the bbc refused to play the erotic dance tune "relax," and a number of christians boycotted cindy lauper's ode to masturbation, "she bop"), john lennon released a new album 4 years after his death, and his son julian released one by seemingly channeling his father, we were warned of the chaos in bangkok, and don henley's [right] ultimate reminder that "all she wants to do is dance"....

against the metal, post glam glitter of the 80s, todd rundgren released his humanitarian, pre- apocolyptic, 1984 global masterpiece, "one world":

Politicians and dictators and the guys with the dough
They think they run the world but they just don't know
'Cause down here on the street we got it under control
From Berlin to San Francisco, from London to Tokyo.

  • Thu
    Jun 19
    7:00 pm -
    8:00 pm
  • Sun
    Jun 22
    7:00 am -
    8:00 am

california

this week...

golden gate 

 

 

 

 

 

...california dreaming...

  • Thu
    Jun 12
    7:00 pm -
    8:00 pm
  • Sun
    Jun 15
    7:00 am -
    8:00 am

summer dreams

this week...summer dreams...

summer dreams

  • Thu
    Jun 05
    7:00 pm -
    8:00 pm
  • Sun
    Jun 08
    7:00 am -
    8:00 am

the best live band you'll ever see

they might be the hardest working band in the usa; having traveled to all the weirdest and hippest venues, now they're playing at some of the biggest and best. a 12-minute song seems to fly by in a flash...

umphrey's mcgeedespite their relative youth, umphrey's mcgee guitarist jake cinninger says umphrey's main influences are led zeppelin, the beatles, sting, chick corea, the band, and tommy emmanual. with those eclectic influences the result is progressive rock fusion with improvisational wizardry that cannot be categorized or contained.

they'll be in des moines july 24th and omaha july 2nd. who's on the bus with me? it'll be a 2 hour performance you won't forget. 

  • Thu
    May 29
    7:00 pm -
    8:00 pm
  • Sun
    Jun 01
    7:00 am -
    8:00 am

musical commencement advice from our best minds from 40 years ago

by now everyone's heard jim carrey's cozmically funny and wise commencement advice to mum last week. as i browsed through music to play from 40 years ago, i realized a lot of music from 1974 was also intended as good advice to the (then) youth of the world. so, along with excerpts from jim carrey, i'll be playing some of the following advice (find these quotes as you listen along) (here are all the songs):

jim carrey"you can spend your whole life imagining ghosts, worrying about the pathways to the future..." - jim carrey

"you're only dancing on this earth for a short while, and though your dreams may toss and turn you now, they will vanish away like your dad's best jeans..." - cat stevens

"genuflect, show respect, don't forget..." - stealer's wheel

"listen to the lion" - van morrison

"look here brother, who you jivin' with that cosmic debris. don't you waste your time on me." - frank zappa

"you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows..." - bob dylan, harry nilsson, john lennon

"love is a rose but you better not pick it; it only grows when it's on the vine." - neil young

"when the demon is at your door, in the morning it won't be there no more. any major dude will tell you." - steely dan

"whatever gets you to the light, is alright, it's alright." - john lennonjoni mitchell

"you know two heads are better than one." - joni mitchell

"to appreciate we deactivate. he knows who goes within himself..." - donovan

"when you were young and your heart was an open book you used to say live and let live..." - paul mccartney

"new music, sweet music, can lighten us, can brighten the world, can save us." - cat stevens

"back when i was young my hope was strong but in time blew it all to hell. if i thought i knew what was good for you, i'd have gone and done it for myself." - todd rundgren 

  • Thu
    May 01
    7:00 pm -
    8:00 pm
  • Sun
    May 04
    7:00 am -
    8:00 am

the big big bang

lots of great new (dare i say it?!) pop songs have been released in the last couple years. some you've heard; most of these you haven't. but they're all singable and authentic.

sugarpie candymanto the left is the swedish swing band, sugarpie and the honeymen. their "bohemian rhapsody" is...well...it swings.

broken bell's "after the disco" was released earlier this year. they continue to be an amazing melodic force.

i start and end with 2 versions of "the big big bang"--an ode to the cosmos, vedic cosmology, and cosmic orgasms:

The big big bang, the reason i'm alive,
When all the stars collide, in this universe inside.
The big big bang. 

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