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05-08-09 Footnotes
Show 180: Joe Nick Patoski on Willie Nelson, Review of Bob Dylan & Greg's DIJ

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1 First up in the news is the Future of Music Coalitions’ report on the state of indie airplay on commercial radio stations. In 2007, after controversies surrounding payola, the FCC and 4 major radio corporations signed a voluntary agreement to air more local and independent artists. The FMC has been keeping tabs on how they’re doing, and the stats are not good. Just as before, 85% of music on the radio comes from major labels. This may have been the conservative and profitable way to go for radio conglomerations in the past, but as the major label system crumbles, it would behoove radio to walk on the wild side a little more.

2 Following in the esteemed footsteps of Prince and No Doubt, Coldplay will give away a free live album with the purchase of a ticket to their Viva La Vida tour. Jim and Greg are always encouraged to see musicians try to give consumers a little more bang for your buck, especially since Coldplay tickets are not nearly as expensive as a lot of summer shows.

3 In other concert industry news, one group that isn’t holding back spending in this economy is the corporate sponsor. According to IEG Sponsorship Report, sponsorships will hit an all-time high in 2009. Companies like JC Penney, Clorox and KC Masterpiece want to cash in on big name music acts. After seeing the Virgin Mobile-sponsored Britney Spears show recently, Jim and Greg wonder if these are such wise investments though. And, they shudder to think of the corporate presence at the upcoming Woodstock reunion.

4 This week Jim and Greg are joined by Texas music authority Joe Nick Patoski for a discussion about the life and career of Willie Nelson. In his many decades making music, Willie has never fit into any boxes—rock/country, religious/profane. But, as Patoski reveals in his book Willie Nelson: An Epic Life, that is what makes him such an amazing musician and such a thriving American icon. Jim and Greg discuss with Joe Nick the difficulties Willie had in making the transition from a songwriter to a successful solo artist. They also talk about his family history, his outlaw status, both literal and figurative, and his role as the “zen bubba” of pot.

5 Another rock icon Bob Dylan has a new album out this week called Together Through Life. This is Dylan’s 33rd studio release, and for this effort he’s enlisted some help including David Hidalgo of Los Lobos and lyrics writing partner Robert Hunter. The release of this record took Jim and Greg by surprise, and to Greg it feels a bit tossed off. The lyrics especially don’t feel as important as what you’d expect from this legendary wordsmith. Greg calls the album “mid-tier” Dylan and gives it a Burn It rating. Jim admits that the lyrics aren’t full of gravitas, but to hear the rocker jamming for pure joy at the age of 68 is wonderful, especially with the squeezebox stylings of Hidalgo. He gives Together Through Life a Buy It.

6 To cap off the show, Greg adds a track to the Desert Island Jukebox. Last week he played Nirvana’s live version of “Where Did You Sleep Last Night?” This week he wants to highlight another great song from that Unplugged set: “Jesus (Don’t) Want Me For a Sunbeam.” It was written by the Scottish duo The Vaselines. The band has headed out on a new US tour and re-released their acclaimed 1992 album The Way of the Vaselines. Both are excellent opportunities to take another look at one of Greg, and Kurt’s, all-time favorite songs.

Songs Featured in Show #180
The Ramones, "Do You Remember Rock and Roll Radio," Lifestyles of the Ramones, 1990
Coldplay, "Lovers In Japan/Reign of Love," Viva La Vida, 2008
Britney Spears, "Toxic," In the Zone, 2003
Willie Nelson, “On the Road Again,” Honeysuckle Rose, 1980
Willie Nelson, “Family Bible,” Yesterday’s Wine, 1971
Willie Nelson, “Shotgun Willie,” Shotgun Willie, 1973
Willie Nelson, “Red Headed Stranger,” Red Headed Stranger, 1975
Willie Nelson, “Nightlife,” Country Willie: His Own Songs, 1965
Roy Orbison, “Pretty Paper,” 1963
Willie Nelson, “Columbus Stockade Blues,” Country Favorites, Willie Nelson Style, 1966
Willie Nelson, “Yesterday,” Live Country Music Concert, 1966
Willie Nelson, “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain,” Red Headed Stranger, 1975
Willie Nelson, “Your Memory Won't Die In My Grave,” Spirit, 1996
Bob Dylan, “Beyond Here Lies Nothin,” Together Through Life, 2009
Bob Dylan, “It’s All Good,” Together Through Life, 2009
The Vaselines, “Jesus Wants Me For a Sunbeam,” The Way of the Vaselines: A Complete History, 1992
Grateful Dead, “Operator,” American Beauty, 1970
The Beach Boys, “Darlin’,” The Beach Boys in Concert, 1973
The Allman Brothers Band, “Done Somebody Wrong,” At Fillmore East, 1971
The White Stripes, “Jolene,” Live At The Wireless, 2002
Warren Zevon, “Poor Poor Pitiful Me,” Stand in the Fire, 1981

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