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Unlikely Drummers, Dylan’s Birthday And Some Teen Spirit

Wednesday, May 22

Keep On is the sophomore release from Memphis-based soul/blues/R&B group Southern Avenue. Featuring sisters Tikyra (drums, vocals) and Tierinii Jackson (vocals) as well as Israeli-born guitarist Ori Naftaly, the group (rounded out by keyboardist Jeremy Powell) moves beyond its city of origin on this new release, creating a series of songs that suggest the future of Southern music is alive and well but open to contemporary influences. Listen for selections from this latest release as well as music from Nils Lofgren’s Blue With Lou, featuring tunes he co-wrote with the late Lou Reed.

Thursday, May 23

Max Weinberg joined Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band in the 1970s and became an integral member of that group. In the 1990s he served as bandleader for Late Night with Conan O’Brien and, later, The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien we’ll hear some of the key performances from his career on this episode as well as selections from Some Girls, the 1978 LP from the Rolling Stones.

Friday, May 24 

We celebrate Bob Dylan’s 78th birthday with selections from throughout his career as well as covers from The Replacements, John Martyn, Shelby Lynn & Allison Moorer plus music from Robyn Hitchcock’s 2002 Dylan tribute, Robyn Sings.

Saturday, May 25

John Bonham is considered one of the greatest rock ‘n’ roll drummers of all time. When he died in 1980, at the age of 32, he left behind a relatively small body of work, the then-latest release, Led Zeppelin’s In Through The Out Door which demonstrated his finesse and power behind the kit. We’ll hear selections from that release on this episode as well as music featuring Bonham’s son, Jason.

Monday, May 27

Established as a holiday to remember persons who have died while in service to the United States military, Memorial Day is observed on the final Monday of May. On this episode of Strange Currency we’ll hear from musicians notable for their service in the military, including Jimi Hendrix and Mothers of Invention member Jimmy Carl Black.

Tuesday, May 28

Though known primarily as a guitarist, Kentucky-born musician Adrian Belew got his start on percussion. We’ll hear selections that feature him in both capacities as well as music from his former King Crimson bandmate Bill Bruford.

Wednesday, May 29

We’ll hear selections from the latest by The Mountain Goats, In League with Dragons plus music from Phish guitarist Trey Anastasio as well as The Cavves’s latest, Venture Out.

Thursday, May 30

Billy Ficca had played drums in a number of capacities, although perhaps nowhere as brilliantly as on the 1977 debut from the band Television, Marquee Moon. We’ll hear selections from that release as well as from the Lawrence, Kansas-based outfit The Ants.

Friday, May 31 

First known as The Bangs, The Bangles became one of the most notable pop groups of the 1980s, featuring drumming from Debbie Peterson. We’ll hear selections from that group as well as music from Bikini Kill, featuring Tobi Vail, who spray-painted the phrase “Kurt smells like Teen Spirit” (Teen Spirit was a deodorant) on her then-boyfriend Kurt Cobain’s bedroom wall in the 1990s, giving Nirvana the title of a song that became an anthem of a generation.