Podcast

Interviews with some of the world’s most successful songwriters.

Nick Lowe Episode 50 – Nick Lowe

Songwriter and producer Nick Lowe, whose credits over more than four decades include hit songs like ‘(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding’, ‘Cruel to be Kind’ and ‘I Love the Sound of Breaking Glass’, joins Simon and Brian for a special 50th episode chat about the writing of those beloved classics as well as later works like ‘You Inspire Me’, ‘The Beast in Me’ and ‘All Men Are Liars’. Nick also discusses his new Christmas album, Quality Street, which includes original songs like ‘Christmas at the Airport’ and ‘I Was Born in Bethlehem’.

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Suzanne Vega Episode 49 – Suzanne Vega

Suzanne Vega illustrates her approach to songwriting by talking about the processes behind songs like ‘Marlene On The Wall’, ‘Tom’s Diner’, ‘Luka’, ‘Men In A War’, ‘Book of Dreams’ and ‘In Liverpool’. Suzanne also discusses her early history as a dancer and musician, attending the Greenwich Village Songwriter’s Exchange, the thinking behind the recent Close-Up series of releases, and her plans for a new album of original material.

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Rickie Lee Jones Episode 48 – Rickie Lee Jones

Singer-songwriter Rickie Lee Jones chats with Simon and Brian about the writing of songs like ‘Chuck E’s in Love’, ‘The Last Chance Texaco’, ‘Coolsville’, ‘Weasel and the White Boys Cool’, ‘Skeletons’ and ‘The Evening of My Best Day’. Rickie talks in detail about her approach to constructing lyrical flow, her recent covers album The Devil You Know, and her plans for a new album of original material, which you can now pledge to support.

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Linda Thompson Episode 47 – Linda Thompson

British folk singer Linda Thompson joins Simon and Brian to talk about the writing of her new solo album Won’t Be Long Now. Linda talks about songs like ‘Love’s for Babies and Fools’, ‘If I Were a Bluebird’ (written with Ron Sexsmith), ‘Paddy’s Lamentation’ and the maritime themes of songs like ‘Never Put to Sea Boys’ and ‘Never the Bride’. Linda describes what it’s like working with family members, especially her son Teddy Thompson, and the vocal condition that silenced her live performance career. The new album also marks the first recording with Richard Thompson in over a decade.

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Ron Sexsmith Episode 46 – Ron Sexsmith

Singer-songwriter Ron Sexsmith discusses his approach to the art and craft of songwriting by detailing the processes behind songs like ‘Secret Heart’, ‘Speaking With The Angel’, ‘Words We Never Use’, ‘Strawberry Blonde’, ‘Gold in Them Hills’, ‘Imaginary Friends’, ‘The Grim Trucker’, ‘Brandy Alexander’, ‘Believe it When I See It’ and ‘Life After A Broken Heart’. Ron talks in depth about his love for artists like Bill Withers, his collaborations with producers like Mitchell Froom and Bob Rock, his work with songwriters like Don Black, and his ongoing pursuit of ‘hit’ records.

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Chip Taylor Episode 45 – Chip Taylor

Singer-songwriter Chip Taylor picks up his guitar to talk Simon and Brian through the writing of songs like ‘Wild Thing’ (The Troggs/Jimi Hendrix), ‘Angel of the Morning’ (Merrilee Rush/Dusty Springfield/Chrissie Hynde), ‘I Can’t Let Go’ (Evie Sands), ‘Welcome Home’ (Walter Jackson), ‘Storybook Children’ (Billy Vera and Judy Clay), ‘Try’ (Janice Joplin), and selections from his recent solo albums like ‘F**k All The Perfect People’, ‘Dance With a Hole in Your Shoe’ and ‘Phoned in Dead’. Chip also talks in detail about the Brill Building days, his alternate career as a professional gambler and the writing processes behind his latest release Block Out The Sirens of This Lonely World.

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Neil Finn Episode 44 – Neil Finn

Neil Finn of Split Enz, Crowded House, Finn Brothers and Pajama Club chats with Simon and Brian about his songwriting process and the writing of songs like ‘Fall At Your Feet’, ‘Don’t Dream It’s Over’, ‘Weather With You’, ‘Four Seasons In One Day’, ‘Not The Girl You Think You Are’ and ‘Edible Flowers’. Neil also talks about his work on The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and details the production of his forthcoming solo record, due in early 2014.

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Rumer Episode 43 – Rumer

Singer-songwriter Rumer talks with Sodajerker about her approach to writing songs like ‘Slow’, ‘Aretha’, ‘Come To Me High’, ‘Blackbird’ and others from her debut album Seasons Of My Soul. Rumer also talks in detail about how events in her life have influenced her creative work, paying respect to great songwriters on her second album, Boys Don’t Cry, and her plans for the future.

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Johnny Marr Episode 42 – Johnny Marr

Songwriter and guitarist Johnny Marr, loved by pop fans worldwide for his work with The Smiths, The The, Electronic, Modest Mouse and The Cribs, joins Simon and Brian for a conversation about the writing processes behind his fantastic new solo album The Messenger. Johnny also talks in detail about his musical influences, growing up in Manchester, his relationship with the guitar, his songwriting partnership with Morrissey, and his collaborations with artists like Kirsty MacColl (‘Walking Down Madison’) and Billy Bragg (‘Sexuality’).

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Allen Toussaint Episode 41 – Allen Toussaint

Influential New Orleans songwriter, producer, arranger and pianist Allen Toussaint sits down with Simon and Brian to discuss his long and highly productive career including the writing of classic songs like ‘Mother in Law’ (Ernie K-Doe), ‘Whipped Cream’ (Herb Alpert), ‘Working in the Coal Mine’ (Lee Dorsey), ‘Here Come the Girls’ (Ernie K-Doe), ‘Southern Nights’ (Glen Campbell), ‘Happiness’ (The Pointer Sisters) and more. Allen talks in depth about his creative process and also gives advice for young songwriters.

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They Might Be Giants Episode 40 – They Might Be Giants

John Flansburgh and John Linnell of They Might Be Giants take an hour out of their busy tour schedule to talk with Simon and Brian about their new album Nanobots; their approach to songwriting; the Dial-A-Song service; writing music for children; their collaborations with production team Clive Langer and Alan Winstanley on songs like ‘Birdhouse in Your Soul’, and more.

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P. F. Sloan Episode 39 – P. F. Sloan

Singer-songwriter P. F. Sloan, known the world over as the author of political anthems such as ‘Eve of Destruction’ (Barry McGuire) and popular hits like ‘Secret Agent Man’ (Johnny Rivers), ‘A Must to Avoid’ (Herman’s Hermits), ‘Summer Means Fun’ (Jan & Dean), ‘You Baby’ (The Turtles) and ‘Take Me For What I’m Worth’ (The Searchers), joins Sodajerker to talk about starting in music as a teenager, his songwriting partnership with Steve Barri, the heady successes of the 1960s, and the many struggles that pushed him away from music for more than 30 years.

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