December 2019 Podcast – Co-Hosted by Jim Benson (S1 E11)

When it comes to the success of the Listen Project (and success is surly a subjective concept here), there is no way that I would have been able to put together and present all of the music from our shared past without Jim Benson.  For over 20 years, Jim WAS the Local Artists Show on WBWC 88.3, Baldwin Wallace College’s (now University’s) radio station starting back when one needed to park a car in the student union parking lot next to the station so you could hear a show.  He hosted hundreds of artists and bands and managed to capture the full richness of the NE Ohio music scene for two hours each week.  Certainly, my band would not have received airplay without Jim’s belief that we had a good record and his willingness to play it.  Jim also was a contributor and co-host for Inner Sanctum, the Sunday night local music show on the old WENZ 107.9 “The End” when that station played great music.  He served three terms as President of the old Cleveland Music Group, a non-profit organization created in the late 1980’s to promote the NE Ohio music scene at events such as the College Music Journal’s Music Marathon in NYC, the South by Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas and the Undercurrents event held here in Cleveland for a number of years in the 1990’s. Jim also managed Youngstown, Ohio’s Ivet bringing that band to the verge of a major record deal before the usual rock and roll “influences” caused them to flame out.

Jim stepped away from the local music scene in the 2000’s but his love for NE Ohio music has never wavered.  I knew immediately when I started the Listen Project that I had to have Jim on-board.  His music archive is incredibly comprehensive and spans the period of time on which the Project focuses, and his encyclopedic mind has forgotten more about the local scene that probably any of us can really remember.  We’ve been in and out of contact over the years, but social media has allowed us to really stay in touch over the past decade which is surprising because the man doesn’t event have a cell phone and I’m pretty sure he hates the concept of digital music outside of the compact disc.

This month’s podcast is the podcast I really intended to do out of the gate.  It took some work to get Jim to agree to go back “on air” so to speak.  Originally, it was a solid, “No.  Too much work” so I decided to go outside of my normal comfort zone and press on.  I had a glimmer of hope when he accepted an invitation to help co-host a local music marathon on WBWC this past July 4th as part of the station’s annual summer marathon series.  Of course, I had to show up and see Jim back in those studios behind the mike where he belongs.  So I waited…in the weeds and asked him out of the blue in October to co-host my monthly podcast with me in December.  Jim picked the songs (including what would have been the first single on Ivet’s never released major label debut) and the playlist order. After a false start due to technical difficulties, we completed this podcast from the comfort of his kitchen.

My sincere hope is to get Jim to do three or four of these a year with me.  It really is fascinating to hear his take on the golden age of the NE Ohio scene.  I’d be nowhere without the access to his music collection that he’s given me.  I hope you enjoy what is the longest podcast the Listen Project has produced to date and if you want to hear Jim Benson more frequently, drop a comment below or at our Facebook page.

The Listen Project – December Podcast

“I’m A Rocker” – Raspberries (from Pop Art Live)
“Dance the Night Away” – Exotic Birds
“Just Got a New Guitar” – Ronald Koal & the Trillionaires
“Devil or Angel” – Nation of One
“Let’s Face the Music & Dance” – Pony Boys
“Metro Metro” – System 56
“Red Light” – Indian Rope Burn
“Wash Away” – The Jellybricks
“Winona” – Rotary Ten
“We’re One for the Show” – Anna Nausea
“Play the Game” – In Fear of Roses
“Supersonic” – Paranoid Lovesick
“My Backyard” – The Walk-Ins
“Pin Your Head to the Drywall” – Nation of Teflon Souls
“This Is Supposed to Be Fun” – Sosumi
“World on a String” – My Dad is Dead
“Big World” – Terrible Parade
“Sidewalk Paths” – Jehova Waitresses
“Bust Some Skulls” – Bluto’s Revenge
“Final Solution” – Pere Ubu
“Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” – Euclid Beach Band
“Grindrod” – Ivet

November 2019 Podcast – It’s All Music to Mark Addison (S1 E10)

Sorry for cutting it so close to the end of the month but my hosting service was problematic.  Now that I’ve got it all figured out, this month, as usual we feature some of the finest music to come out of Northeast Ohio.  On top of that, we have an interview with the legendary Mark Addison, singer, songwriter and guitarist of the Generators, Hungry Young Men, Nation of One and the Wanton Seeds AND the premiere of one of his newly written songs.  We also touch on the “Akron Sound”  featuring four bands from Akron that are not Devo or the Waitresses (their time will come).

Playlist

“Born & Raised On Rock and Roll” – Beau Coup
“That’s Just the Way It Is” – Donatello
“Saturday Night Fish ry” – Joe Bell & The Swing Lizards
“Mr. Sensible” – Mr. Sensible
“I’m A Generator” – The Generators
“Be Home Soon” – Hungry Young Men
“Devil or Angel” – Nation of One
“Runaway Train” – Mark Addison
“It’s All Music To Me” – Mark Addison **brand new song** 
“It’s No Fun” – Hostile Omish
“Come Over To My Coffin” – Snyders of Berlin
“Bust Some Skulls” – Bluto’s Revenge
“Wise Up” – Tin Huey
“Go Ahead and Kiss Her” – Unit 5
“Just the Facts” – In Fear of Roses
“Heading Home” – Time No Reason

Barncore & Butterchurns

Everyone’s favorite barncore butterchurners are back.  The Hostile Omish will be appearing at Sassy’s Bar & Grille in Twinsburg, OH on Friday, November 29th from 8:00-11:00 PM.  Formed in the late 1980’s in Bedford, OH, the Schwind brothers and friends created the whole new genre of barncore by adding two butterchurners on stage to compliment the tradition drums, bass, guitar and voice configuration favored by most bands.  Their shows are both infrequent and legendary so do not miss this chance to see them on stage in their natural habitat playing their hits like “Lizard Up My Buthole,” “It’s No Fun (Omish Excommunicated Blues).” and “Who Put Sea Monkey’s In My Mom’s Douche.”.  Plus, the band’s newest album, “XXX” will be available for sale as well as (totally unconfirmed) the butter churned on stage that night.  Want a quick fix of Hostil Omish barncore?  Go here to listen to their second cassette release, 1991’s “Caution: This Buggy Makes Wide Right Churns.”  The, grab your Amish hat, hitch up your horse and buggy, and head on out to Twinsburg on November 29th for what will be, one way or another, a memorable show.

October 2019 Podcast – Yesterday & Today (S1 E9)

Sometimes I come up with great ideas (not often, just ask my wife), but it dawned on me after our exclusive release of new music from Columbus’ The Bounty in August and now, new music from Skydragster (the band formerly known as Medicine Men/Medicine Show) that quite a few musicians from our focused time period are still writing, recording and performing new music.  So, why not produce a “yesterday and today” podcast and feature some new music (without the plastic babies and raw meat, though)?   I posted my thoughts at the Listen Facebook group and received much encouragement.  Including the aforementioned Skydragster and The Bounty, we’ve got a lot of cool songs this month including brand new music from the French Lenards,

Setlist
“In Too Far” (1992) – Medicine Men
“Play Guitar All Day” (2019) – Skydragster

“Big World” – Terrible Parade
“Clutter” (2017) – Fits of Hail

“Held Like A Gun” – Knifedance
“Devil In The Bottle” – Black Static Eye

“Walk With The Giants” (1990) – The Bounty
“Bridge To Nowhere” (2019) – The Bounty

“Fly” (1996) – World In A Room
“Pieces” (2019) – Honeythief

“The Smoker” (1991) – The Vivians
“The Smoker” (2019) – Strange Messenger

“Perfect Impossible” (1994) – Jehova Waitresses
“Mistake” (2017) – Jehova Waitresses

“Scuzz Missle” (1991) – Sleazy Jesus & The Splatter Pigs
“Faded Blue” (2019) – The Tufted Puffins

“She Said” (1991) – The Outcasts
“The Curve” (2018) – Don Owens

“Protection” (1996) – The Simpletons
“Run With Me” (2018) – Tony Lang

“After Saturday Night” (1987) – The French Lenards
“Like Grains Of Sand” (2019) – The French Lenards

 

 

September 2019 Podcast – Seven Inch Special (S1 E8)

This month’s theme is the seven-inch single.  For most of you listening, you know exactly what I’m talking about but for those that don’t, before Apple Music, Spotify and even before mp3 players or compact disc players, bands released their best songs on seven-inch vinyl discs as “singles” played on record players, an entirely non-portable format.  The “A” side was usually the “hit” and the “B” side was, in most cases, the “non-hit” although sometimes a DJ would find a diamond in the rough when he accidentally flipped the record and played the “B” side. The disc came in a sleeve that may or may not have artwork or a photo of the band depending on just how DIY the project was.  The seven-inch single was the major format for most radio stations including college radio where most of the music you’ll hear in this podcast was played.  Enjoy!

September Set List

“Good Rockin’ Feeling” – Raven Slaughter (1988)
“Another Girl Like You” – American Noise (1982)
“Never Again Without You” – Billy Sullivan (1986)
“Only an Emotion Away” – Richard & the Heartbeats (1987)
“Mystified” – Nick Riff (1993)
“Walking & Thinking” – The Revelers (1994)
“I Want to Be with You Tonight” – Lipstick (1985)
“Don’t Leave Me Lonely” – Jet (1986)
“Who Knows Why” – Exotic Birds (1983)
“State of the Art” – Separate Checks (1986)
“Muchacha Latina Today” – Lucky Pierre (1984)
“3 Little Monkeys” – Psychobilly Cadillac (1990)
“New Era” – Wild Giraffes (1977)
“Countdown” – Times (1979)
“To Keep You Warm at Night” – Verdanzen (1986)
“Walking in Circles” – The Akt (1987)
“Res-Q Me” – Serious Nature (1987)
“Made in Japan” – Messages (1983)
“She Don’t Need Me” – Max Crucial & the Krushers (1988)
“You and Me (We’ll See)” – Back Pages (1988)
“Can You Walk on the Water” – The Mice (1984)

 

August 2019 Podcast (S1 E7)

This month’s podcast features music that I’ve only heard as a result of the Listen Project.  While I may have known or know of a band featured this month, the first time I heard these songs was when I was compiling the archive and these are some of my new favorites.

Why is the Flash at the top of this page?  Well, like him, if you pass on this podcast, you will probably find me posting them infrequently.  I spend anywhere from ten to twelve hours per month researching, compiling and producing the podcast.  Don’t get me wrong – I’m still passionate about the music both in preserving it and representing it to a new generation but the feedback has been almost non-existant.  I’m a one-man operation with no sponsorship or budget and my satisfaction comes from knowing that there are people out there who truly enjoy the podcasts.  So, do me a favor.  “Listen” (see what I did there) and comment either here on at the Facebook page or email me at chris@listenclevelandmusic.com.  All feedback is welcome.  If you think it’s great, let me know,  If you think it’s crap, let me know.  If there’s something you want to hear and I have it, I’ll play it.  If I don’t have it, I’ll try to find it. Thanks for enduring my rant.  Enjoy this month’s music.

August Setlist
Hello – Sputnik
There Goes My Heart Again – 3D
Wanted – Jonah Koslen & the Heroes
Supersonic – Paranoid Lovesick
Fly This Time – Ten Years Hooked
Facedown – Uptown Sinclair
Invisible – Jaded Era
Peacemeal – Throckmorton
Better Than Me – Romans Go Home
Gone – Mothertrain
Radio Song – Cyde
Drowning Pool – Drill Kitty
Race Against Time – Ray Carmen
Breaking the Sound Barrier – Rare Blend
Stop the Madness – The Spudmonsters
Puzzles – The Unknown
Jesus – Greenhouse 27
Lovely – Five Minutes Fast
If I Were A Girl – The Fifth Wheel

A LISTEN PROJECT EXCLUSIVE: The Bounty Say Everyone Loves A Second Act

I am truly humbled and excited to be writing this post.  I received a Facebook message earlier this week from vocalist Jim Kozelek who fronted the Columbus band, The Bounty in the late 1980’s/early 1990’s.  A little history here – The Bounty, while from Columbus, had a very strong following in NE Ohio and played a number of gigs here on the Northcoast.  The band released an LP, Walk With the Giants in 1991.  Two tracks from the album appeared on two different Jim Clevo Presentations compilations.  “Buffaloes” appeared on the 1990 The Killer Blow disc while the album’s title track (one of my favorites) appeared on 1991’s Clearing the Air double CD compilation.  The Bounty disbanded circa 1992 and seemingly disappeared into the ether.  As I was compiling music for the project, I picked up a vinyl copy of their album and it’s become one of my favorites of the era.  While I didn’t get to see the Bounty perform, I could tell they must have been a great live band.  After a little detective work, I discovered the band’s Facebook page and learned that, lo and behold, they were back at, reuniting for an acoustic show in September 2017 and working on new music.

Well, the work is done and ready to go.  Based on a good word from my guru, Satan himself Jim Benson, Jim Kozelek reached out to me and asked if I would like to be the first in NE Ohio to release some new Bounty music.  My response – “Of course, I do!”  Almost 30 years after the release of Walk With The Giants, The Bounty is ready to release their sophomore effort, Everybody Loves A Second Act.

From the band’s media release:

The Columbus, Ohio band The Bounty will release, in electronic format only, the 10-song album Everybody Loves a Second Act.

Everybody Loves a Second Act belatedly follows the nine track 1991 release Walk with the Giants.

Recorded at Sonic Lounge in Grove City, Ohio and engineered by Joe Viers, Everybody Loves a Second Act is packed with full bodied, melodic, guitar driven songs crossing between power pop and roots rock/Americana.

“Unlike Walk with the Giants, which was recorded one song per session at the Recording Workshop, this was really the first time we were in a studio where we could do what we wanted. So there are a lot of different guitars and vocals, a lot of different textures and melody lines to the songs” said Jim Kozelek.

Lennie Blodgett – Drums

Jamey Ball – Bass Guitar; Guitar; Lap Steel

John Estep – Guitar; Mandolin; Backing Vocals

Jim Kozelek – Vocals

Joe Viers – Bass Guitar on “Stop,””Watershed,””Turn,””Sleep,””Go to Pieces”; Horn sounds on “Sleep”

Maria Kozelek – Backing Vocals on “These Things Take Time”

So here’s two songs from The Bounty’s soon to be released new digital album.  If you like them, comment below and then go the the band’s Facebook and give them a “like.”  When you’re done there, check out the full release of Walk With The Giants at my YouTube page.

The Bounty ELASA Cover

“Bridge To Nowhere”

“Big Love”

The Bounty 002

July 2019 Podcast (S1 E6)

This month, I decided to focus on many of the incredible female vocalists that made the Northeast Ohio scene from the end of the 1970’s through 2000.  Enjoy and please post your feedback in the comments.

July 2019 Playlist (lead vocalist name in parenthesis)

Candle Garden – Public Library (Leigh Anne Bowling)
Black Widow – The Vivians (Diane Duncan)
Leavin’ – Odd Girl Out (Alexis Antes, Anne E. DeChant & Victoria Fliegel)
Summertime – The Generators (Eva Dilcue)
The Rain Came Down – The Walk-Ins (Bonnie Bowers)
How It Grows – The Walk-Ins (Ann Marie Kovach)
Lovalution 232 – The Walk-Ins (Bethany Edwards)
Flowers – The Normans (Eugenia Dare)
Songwriter – North by Northwest (Heidi Tittjung)
Realism – Ceilings Below (Linda Wilson)
Far & Wide – The Waynes (Laurie Hallal)
Clean & Simple – Jehova Waitresses (Linda Roy)
Life’s Blood – Queue Up (Ali Hernan)
The Game of Love – Jinni Fontana (Jinni Fontana)
Something Fishy – Gunnblue (Avril McInally)
Outside – The Frans (Mandy Lascko)
Holy Holy – Primary Colours (Jeanette DeMain)
Stand Alone – Tracey Thomas (Tracey Thomas)
Laughing in the Rain – In Fear of Roses (Georgi Smith)
Dream Girl – Superkreme (Susan Rasch)

June 2019 Podcast – Magnetic North Special (S1 E5)

For over 30 years, Chris Keffer has produced, engineered, mixed and mastered thousands of hours of NE Ohio music from a variety of genres at his Magnetic North Studios. This month we pay tribute to his work and his dedication to helping musicians reach their potential.  Every song in this month’s playlist was recorded at Magnetic North between 1988 and 1999.

Playlist

Here We Go Again – The Palindromes

Beer – Sleazy Jesus & The Splatter Pigs

Elijah – Lake Effect

She’s Out There – Atomic Cafe

Fooled Again – North By Northwest

The Thrills of a Race Car Driver – Grain

Annie Mae – The Unknown

Sweet Young Thing – Blue Taxi

King Kong – Cats on Holiday

Very Mary – Gypsy Moths

Play the Game – In Fear of Roses

Opportunity – Jehova Waitresses

Break Out – Joe Bell & The Swing Lizards

Miles From Somewhere – Third Wish

Everything Suffering – Crypt Kicker

Set Myself Up – The Revelers

Veronica – Beatnik Termites

My Backyard – The Walk-Ins