Saturday, December 26, 2009

EPISODE157 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week we celebrated the start of our 4th year of Talking 80s Music. Oddly timed, as it also comes right before the end of this decade. It also marks nearly 30 years since the start of the 1980s. So, we decided to do a countdown of the 25 biggest U.S. singles of the 1980s to commemorate the event. Quite an undertaking and, if anything, Martin has a new respect for Casey Kasem, Shadoe Stevens and anyone else that does countdowns.

To ensure that everything went well, we recorded the countdown earlier so there is a noticeable jump in audio quality. Not much we could do to correct for that. We did this so we could get back to our families to help take down Christmas trees, stockings and all. From all of us, to all of you, have a happy new year!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

EPISODE156 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

With Christmas and other winter holiday celebrations going on during the upcoming week, we figured we'd look at other forms of giving. Many charity singles and albums were released during the decade and we felt that it's a good time to focus on some of those. We play a charity retrospective mix, Cliff Richard & The Young Ones' "Living Doll," Stop The Violence's "Self Destruction" and Band Aid II's "Do They Know It's Christmas?" So many overlooked songs and some really hard to find. Probably about time they come out with a compilation of those tracks.

As we look back on the recording, it's too bad more of these songs aren't available digitally as they'd still be making money for the charity of their choice. (And it'd help the quality of a few songs in the mix.) Very happy with how everything else came out overall. This is the last episode in our 3rd year running and our appreciation goes to goes out to each of you, our listeners. Enjoy the holidays!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

EPISODE155 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

We'd been feeling the metal urge and this week we turned our focus on a man that can literally bend metal on stage... Thor's Jon Mikl Thor. We talked with him about his career and featured a few live ("Lightning Strikes" and "Warriors Of The Universe") and studio tracks ("Thor Against The World" and "Call Of The Triumphant".) We can now say we've had our strongest show yet.

Beware your electronics when talking to the Norse god of thunder as something happened to our audio during the interview (crackling) and after. We've replaced our sound card. As you can tell, the audio sounds crisper. Definitely a blessing from the gods.

Best Of Thor (Vol. 3)Thor
"Call Of The Triumphant" (mp3)
from "Best Of Thor (Vol. 3)"
(Smog Veil Records)
Buy at iTunes Music Store
Buy at Rhapsody
Buy at Napster
Stream from Rhapsody
Buy at Amazon MP3
More On This Album

Thor Against The WorldThor
"Thor Against The World" (mp3)
from "Thor Against The World"
(Smog Veil Records)
Buy at iTunes Music Store
Buy at Rhapsody
Buy at Napster
Stream from Rhapsody
Buy at Amazon MP3
More On This Album

Saturday, December 05, 2009

EPISODE154 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week on Talking 80s Music, we touched on one of the bigger teen heart-throbs of the 1980s... Corey Hart. Some great music came from the Canadian singer/songwriter but for some reason it never manifested overseas (i.e. England.) We put together a retrospective mix, played an unplugged version of "Never Surrender" as well as "Eurasian Eyes" and "I Am By Your Side." Well worth taking our Corey Challenge we mention during the show -- play any of his hits other than "Never Surrender" and "Sunglasses At Night" to one of your friends and see if they can guess the artist.

We had a great time working on this episode. Has to be the content. Maybe it's also knowing that we provided some of our listeners with the missing puzzle pieces that make up the bigger picture of this artist. Did notice a few problems with the live version that were corrected later. If this continues, we may have to tweak a few things again.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

EPISODE153 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week, we focused on Wide Boy Awake -- the short-lived project by former Adam & The Ants bassist Kevin Mooney. No retrospective mix necessary as we touched on all their singles ("Chicken Outlaw," "Slang Teacher," "Billy Hyena" and "Bona Venture.") If people are known by the company they keep, Wide Boy Awake will be remembered kindly as their songs appear on many compilations of the decade.

We also played a demo of the new OMD song, "Sister Marie Says," and sample of "Ain't Gonna Die" from Bruce Kulick's upcoming album, BK3. What better way to hear what's coming to stores near you next year. Technically, we had a slight problem calling into the chat room and starting the show. For some reason the software dialpad wouldn't let us enter our passcode, making us start a little late. But otherwise, all went well.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

EPISODE152 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This time, we celebrated Paul McCartney week. The singer/songwriter released his new live CD/DVD, Good Evening New York City, this week and we gave away a copy of it during our show (with a trivia question.) We will also feature a retrospective mix and a few singles ("Take It Away," "No More Lonely Nights," "Press" and "Put It There") he released during the decade in an brief overview of his illustrious career.

Don't think that more fun could have been had during this show. Martin was able to touch on some of his favorite McCartney songs and remind a few people out there about some of his singles that got brief airplay but are still running around your heads. When it came time to give away the copy of Good Evening New York City... a few of the callers that were holding out for the trivia contest dropped out (the show went longer than normal.) The first call in was from Martin's cousin Johnny... well, he thought it was. You'll understand after hearing it. (Without a second caller behind them, they got a rare second chance and won.)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

EPISODE151 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week on Talking 80s Music, we decided to fill in another historical gap by explaining away any notion that Cyndi Lauper just appeared out of nowhere screaming "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun." Stardom is seldom sudden and often their early work to get to that level goes unnoticed. To fix this we showcased her short-lived band Blue Angel and exposing you to a rockabilly-ish side of one of the eighties most recognized artists. We featured their "I Had A Love," "Maybe He'll Know," "Take A Chance" and "I'm Gonna Be Strong." Their album is well worth purchasing.

Had a great time working on this episode. There is something about reminding people of the music they should have heard and their radio stations are unlikely to play. We also played a sample of Slash's cover of "Paradise City" featuring Cypress Hill and Fergie as well as, "Amazing," the first single off Steevi Jaimz' latest album. Technically, all went pretty well. Had to amplify the mic towards the end of the show which added some static. Thinking that the playing of the songs is slowly knocking the mic level down but we'll mess with it later.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

EPISODE150 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week we turn our eighties obsessed peepers on the solo career of Jane Wiedlin of the Go-Gos. Often overlooked, Wiedlin's voice is necessary voices in 80s music. We play a brief retrospective mini-mix, "Blue Kiss," "Inside A Dream" and "Whatever It Takes." We could have spent longer on her but we'll get to hear her more when we do a full episode on the Go-Gos.

Nothing really technical to note. Tough week though. Dedicating this episode to the late Fred Sicks. Everything is going well otherwise and have a few interviews in the works. No, I'm holding it back until it's in the can and ready for your consumption.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

EPISODE149 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week's episode of Talking 80s Music fell on Halloween. Despite being Martin's favorite holiday, it's also the excuse he used to delve into the often creepy and disturbing side of rock music by focusing on industrial powerhouse Skinny Puppy. We featured their classic tracks "Smothered Hope," "One Time One Place," "Shadowcast" and "Tin Omen" in an effort to cover their career.

Still keeping our fingers crossed (and knocking on wood) as it must be said that the show has been sounding better technically. Thought of throwing in a bunch of Halloween sounds but... this wasn't an glossy show. We considered a few live tracks but the bass end of the songs we looked at were almost non-existent yet oh so necessary for showcasing a band like this.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

EPISODE148 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week on Talking 80s Music, we filled a historical gap by focusing on the Joe Perry Project. A lot of people think that Aerosmith has just been a juggernaut since the 1970s but there was a low moment when the band was without their guitarist as he walked... a different way. We played live versions of "Let The Music Do The Talking" and "Once A Rocker, Always A Rocker," "East Coast, West Coast" and a clip of "We've Got A Long Way To Go" from his new solo album, Have Guitar, Will Travel. It's an interesting story for fans and rock-a-holics alike. If anything, it leaves you with questions. What would have happened if the albums were promoted properly? Would the amazing success of Aerosmith have happened without this fractured moment? Did corporate sabotage keep fans from hearing great music? You'll have to answer those questions on your own.

Before we get to the technical stuff, we've been asked by our sponsors to get as many listeners to fill out this survey for us about the show. We'd be very appreciative if you do. Anyhow, using the system we have set up, we've eliminated the hum in the last few episodes. Don't see us playing with things to make them any worse. Did have a fun time on this show and
our future episodes look even more promising.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

EPISODE147 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week on Talking 80s Music, we celebrated the life of one of the most powerful set of lungs in R&B... the late Luther Vandross. Quite a bit of work to cover a man that was very busy during the decade as a solo artist, backing vocalist and arranger but we do our best to do right by him. Expect a big retrospective mix, a live version of "A House Is Not A Home" as well as "I'll Let You Slide" and "Give Me A Reason." The mix is well worth paying attention to as you can see how diverse an artist he was by just a sampling of some of his work.

Need to put that link up for you to see a young Luther with his group Listen My Brother on an episode of Sesame Street. See if you can spot him. Went a bit longer on this episode than we expected but there is just so much to cover that leads you to his career and after our decade of focus. Had a lot of fun but a lot more work than normal. Must say that it sounds pretty good in the final mix. Good shows are what keeps us going and this could be one of them.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

EPISODE146 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week we had been thinking about getting a little healthier. A little jogging, eating better and taking our vitamins. So we're going to work on your musical health and get you your Vitamin Z -- the kind created in Sheffield. We'll focus on the band's two studio releases (1985's Rites Of Passage and 1989's Sharp Stone Rain) and even feature a song you should recognize. Great band to stump your friends on.

One of the best sounding episodes that we've done in awhile (from the microphone side.) And, oddly enough, we just changed back to our older mic. Go figure. The first two songs should have a little pop to them as they come from a vinyl source. Fun music and we had our first visitor from Egypt in the chat room.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

EPISODE145 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week, we figured that it was time to talk about one of the biggest icons of a single music genre and they don't get any bigger than late reggae artist Bob Marley. We played a retrospective mix (focused on his last two albums and singles), a bootleg of "Could You Be Loved" recorded in 1980 at Rockpalast and the unlikely posthumous collaboration, on "Roots, Rock, Reggae," with Steven Tyler and Joe Perry.

Fun episode where we also previewed a sample from Cinderella's upcoming live album. Noticing some vocal audio issues during the show and hope to rectify it. Might try to route the microphone differently next week.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

EPISODE144 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week on Talking 80s Music, you hear The Truth, the whole Truth and nothing but The Truth as we focused on the U.K. act of the same name. Expect a retrospective mix of some of their singles, "A Step In The Right Direction," "Weapons Of Love" and, the very hard to find theme from the 1987 film The Hidden, "It's Hidden," to cover the many different phases of their career. Listen and ask yourself how many bands they sound like. The vocals on their biggest U.S. hit, "Weapons Of Love," remind Martin of the late Robert Palmer.

The mixing did seem to go too well but the problem remained that we had a mic that almost disappeared in the mix. To fix that, we had to accept a constant hum in the background... or some intermittent static. We opted for the static. This does mean we have to look at some changes for the next show. But overall, we had a great time and met some new listeners.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

EPISODE143 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

It was a death that rocked the music world at the beginning of a new decade and ended a brilliant career short. This week on Talking 80s Music we turned an eye on John Lennon. His output during the 1980s was limited to two albums (you could add Menlove Avenue but that was mainly early outtakes) but he did have an affect on the music of the 80s and we remind you how. We featured clips from one of his last interviews, a retrospective mix and demos of the songs "I'm Losing You" and "I'm Steppin' Out."

Quite an interesting journey. Sometimes you really don't think about how much an artist affects you until you focus your attention explicitly on them. Overall, no major technical hitches. Towards the end of the show we had people in the chat room from the U.K. and New York which weirded Martin out a little. (Lennon born in Liverpool, U.K. and ending his life in New York.) In retrospect, songs titles like "I'm Losing You" and "I'm Steppin' Out" sound like departures and are creepy as well. Still a little static in the background but not enough to annoy.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

EPISODE142 - Talking 80s Music with Martin Hennessy

This week on Talking 80s Music we dig deep to uncover the short history of Rockwell. Yes, you probably remember his biggest hit "Somebody's Watching Me" but he wasn't a 'one-hit-wonder.' We dispel that myth, go into his history and hopefully leave you with less questions than we start. Features a retrospective mix, "Knife," "He's A Cobra" and "Carme'." There really isn't as much information out there about Kennedy William Gordy. Maybe that will change in the future. During the show we also previewed the song "Next Time Around" from Mr. Big's upcoming live album.

We noticed that we left out the Chart Flashback which will return for double duty next week. Technically, nothing too wrong on this end. A little hiss but no hum. It does seem that there was some audio cut-out during the songs for those in the chat room. But they also had trouble staying connected to the chat area. Oddly enough, a new update of Firefox was released today so... this could have a lot to do with it. Let's hope it is resolved in future updates.