The Relix Audio Hour
The Relix Audio Hour is a podcast supplement to Relix magazine. A unique audio experience for music fans of all varieties, it presents everything from exclusive interviews to concert and album reviews in a compact, easily listenable format.
Episode Eight: Jimi Hendrix’s ‘Electric Ladyland’ 50th Anniversary Special
In the newest episode of our podcast The Relix Audio Hour, we roll the clock back 50 years and take a deep dive into the recording process of Jimi Hendrix’s 1968 opus Electric Ladyland.
Host Jesse Lauter sits down with the record’s engineer/mixer Eddie Kramer as well as Hendrix historian John McDermott to explore the ins and outs of the groundbreaking LP, which would be Hendrix’s crowning recording achievement.
Kramer recalls joining the project in April 1968, and witnessing Hendrix in the throws of the creative process. “It was such a rush of information being thrown at me,” he chuckles.
Courtesy of the Hendrix estate, you can also hear audio of Hendrix himself describing the LP. Much of the episode’s soundtrack comes from the recently released Electric Ladyland deluxe boxset, as well its companion film At Last The Beginning: The Making of Electric Ladyland.
“He was a man who was blessed with god-given talent, amazing talent. But he was able to focus. He had a vision. Once he got on track with a song, and he knew pretty much in his head where it was headed, he wouldn’t stop. He wouldn’t let go – it’s like a pit-bull – until he achieved the end goal,” Kramer says of Hendrix.
Kramer and McDermott also recall Hendrix’s admiration of Steve Winwood, who plays organ on Electric Ladyland‘s “Voodoo Child.”
“He loved Winwood’s playing. I think at one point he asked him, ‘Hey, let’s put a band together. Or at least join my band,’” Kramer posits, adding to the myth of rock and roll’s greatest group that never was.
Listen to episode eight of The Relix Audio Hour here.
Episode Seven: Phil & Grahame Lesh with Eric Krasno
In episode seven of our podcast The Relix Audio Hour, we present the second installment of our “Conversations with Kraz” series, in which guitarist Eric Krasno chats with musicians about their craft and more. This time around, Kraz speaks with Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh and his son Grahame, a chat that took place backstage at Phil Lesh & The Terrapin Family Band’s SummerStage performance at New York’s Central Park this past September
The conversation begins with Krasno and the elder Lesh on-on-one, speaking about the bassist’s formal music education, how his unique playing style with the Dead was inspired by classical music—especially Bach—being invited by Jerry Garcia to join the Grateful Dead (even before he’d played bass), the merits of collective improvisation and Lesh’s appreciation of all the bands playing the Dead’s music these days. “Songs are like fairy tales,” Lesh says, “all versions are true. I can predict that they’ll still be playing these songs in 100 years.”
Grahame then joins the discussion, talking with his father and Krasno about his own early bands when he was in school, learning Dead songs from Phil and singing harmonies with his brother Brian, playing shows with Phil and The Terrapin Family Band and more, including how TFB have been writing and recording some new songs. Both Lesh’s also speak on the importance of Phil’s Terrapin Crossroads venue in San Rafael, CA, which Phil calls “a game changer” in his later musical career.
Listen to episode seven of The Relix Audio Hour here.
Episode Six: Nels Cline & Carl Broemel, Jay Blakesberg
In episode six of our podcast The Relix Audio Hour, producer and host Jesse Lauter moderates a conversation between two lead guitarists, Wilco’s Nels Cline and My Morning Jacket’s Carl Broemel.
The two musicians—who both joined their respective iconic modern-rock bands in 2004, after the groups had already garnered passionate fanbases—discuss how they came to meet up with Wilco and MMJ, along with their first live outings with the bands. Cline and Broemel also talk about their solo careers and recent releases—The Nels Cline 4’s Currents, Constellations and Broemel’s Wished Out—along with the fact that both of their band’s happen to be on hiatus at the moment, offering them more time to focus their attention elsewhere. Other topics of conversation include the roles of lead guitarists in modern music, how they reset when they hit a musical roadblock, (not quite) growing out of collecting vintage guitars and more.
Episode six also features iconic rock photographer Jay Blakesberg discussing an upcoming career retrospective, “Chasing Splintered Sunlight,” at Southport Galleries in Southport, CT.
Listen to episode five of The Relix Audio Hour here.
Episode Five: Mickey Hart & George Porter Jr.
In episode five of our podcast The Relix Audio Hour, producer and host Jesse Lauter moderates a conversation between Grateful Dead drummer and world music aficionado Mickey Hart and bassist George Porter Jr., founding member of New Orleans funk godfathers The Meters.
The two musicians delve deep into the relationship between bassist and drummer to form the rhythm section and foundation of a band, along a discussion on the different approaches taken by their respective legendary bands over the past 50 years, what sorts of music influenced them early on in their careers, and what it was like when they finally joined forces. The conversation took place backstage at this year’s LOCKN’ Festival, just before members of Dead & Company—including Hart—joined Porter Jr. and Foundation of Funk on stage for a few tunes.
This episode of the podcast also includes a coda with keyboardist Robert Walter, who takes us through the space and sci-fi influences on his new album with his band 20th Congress, Spacesuit.
Listen to episode five of The Relix Audio Hour here.
Episode Four: Courtney Barnett, Lola Kirke & Howlin’ Rain
In episode four of our podcast The Relix Audio Hour, Courtney Barnett discusses her new album, Tell Me How You Really Feel with Relix’s Editor-in-Chief Mike Greenhaus.
Also in this episode: Lola Kirke gives a track-by-track breakdown on the writing and recording of her record, Heart Head West, and Ethan Miller of Howlin’ Rain explores the collision of science, chance and magic that allowed for his latest LP, The Alligator Bride, to exist.
Listen to episode four of The Relix Audio Hour here:
Episode Three: John Mayer and Eric Krasno
In episode three of our podcast The Relix Audio Hour, we present a conversation between two guitarists, John Mayer and Eric Krasno, recorded backstage at this past weekend’s LOCKN’ Festival in Arrington, VA. The episode is the first in our “Conversations with Kraz” series, in which the Soulive guitarist invites musicians to speak about their craft.
Mayer, who was onsite to play four sets with Dead & Company (along with a couple guest spots), and Krasno, who shared the stage with Mayer on Saturday as the two sat in during Krasno former band Lettuce’s late-night Jerry Garcia Band tribute, begin their sprawling discussion on the topic of songwriting, with both covering their differing approaches to the craft throughout their careers. The conversation then shifts, apropos to their LOCKN’ surroundings, to the guitarists’ appreciation and discovery of the music of the Grateful Dead, along with their love of musicians like Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan (and lamenting the lack of guitar heroes who made it past 40). The duo also jokes throughout about various guitar minutiae, including how Mayer self-deprecatingly describes some of his onstage work:
“That’s what I call practicing on stage: You play a lick that you almost landed, then you just start taking stage time to basically try to nail a skateboard trick. It’s the guitar equivalent! Then you listen back to it, and you’re like, ‘Oh, no!’”
Listen to episode three of The Relix Audio Hour here:
Episode Two: David Fricke and Don Was
The second episode of our podcast The Relix Audio Hour details a riveting conversation between producer Don Was and rock critic David Fricke.
The Q&A delves into Was’ studio work with legends like The Rolling Stones and Gregg Allman, as well as producing tribute concerts with artists like Ryan Adams and his tenure as the head of Blue Note Records. It was recorded live at the second annual Relix Live Music Conference at New York’s Brooklyn Bowl.
“My style of production is to work with artists who I have tremendous respect for,” Was tells Fricke, who is best known as an editor at Rolling Stone and a contributor to Relix.
Listen to episode two of The Relix Audio Hour here:
Episode One: Leon Bridges
“This is a podcast for music lovers like you and me, and we hope to turn you on to some cool things along the way,” host/producer Jesse Lauter explains in episode one of The Relix Audio Hour.
Our debut episode has something for everyone: Leon Bridges discusses the making of his highly-anticipated album, Good Thing with Bill Murphy; contributing writer Jesse Jarnow reviews Bob Weir & Phil Lesh’s recent tour, where they “stripped-down” the Grateful Dead catalog with guests Trey Anastasio (Phish) and Larry Campbell (Bob Dylan); and finally, Phish’s songwriter Tom Marshall, along with RJ Bee, explain their new venture, the Osiris Podcast Network. Our theme music is provided courtesy of keyboard extraordinaire Marco Benevento.
“Welcome to debut episode of The Relix Audio Hour,” Relix editor Dean Budnick tells the listener. “Just as that name has a classic feel, we hope the content will similarly reflect the timeless, enduring nature of all we do at Relix magazine and over at our websites Relix.com and Jambands.com.”
Listen to episode one of The Relix Audio Hour here: