It’s hard to believe that we’re almost halfway through May already.
We offer up our second edition of MIRRORBALL and a somber new episode of Sydney’s Big Electric Cat Friday afternoon on The AIR.
At 2 PM we present an AIR Music Special, the second edition of MIRRORBALL, hosted by Mel Larch. We follow that with a rememberance of David Greenfield, the keyboardist for The Stranglers on Sydney’s Big Electric Cat at 3 PM. You can hear these shows on The AIR website, or just click on this embedded radio player…
Your PopCulteer is trying to assemble some fun stuff to go along with VirtuALL FestivALL, and that is taking me away from the essayist’s chair this week, so we shall once again devote our weekly column of randomness to telling you about the new programming Friday afternoon on The AIR.
A couple of weeks ago I told you about a fateful car trip last summer when your PopCulteer and his wife were driving around Pennsylvania looking for toys and chocolate for our anniversary, we were passing the driving time by listening to the porn-nostalgia podcast, The Rialto Report. In particular, we were listening to a two-part podcast about porn-star turned Disco Queen, Andrea True.
This got Mel (Mrs. PopCulteer) talking about her love of Disco music of the late 1970s, and we came up with the idea of doing a Disco Music special for The AIR, with the idea that it might turn into a series if enough people like it. It turns out that enough people did like it, as it became the most-listened-to non RFC program on The AIR in its first airing.
As I mentioned before, MIRRORBALL is Mel’s baby. While I hated Disco during its peak, I have come to appreciate the production and the musicianship and actually like the best of it now, but Mel knows this stuff inside and out, so I just follow her lead while producing the program.
Here’s the playlist for episode two, so you can follow along at home…
Amii Stewart “Knock On Wood”
KC and the Sunshine Band “I’m Your Boogie Man”
Rose Royce “Car Wash”
Sylvester “You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)
Kool And The Gang “Ladies Night”
Donna Summer “Love To Love You Baby”
Disco Tex and the Sex-O-Lettes “Get Dancin'”
Candi Staton “Young Hearts Run Free”
Silver Connection “Fly Robin Fly”
Peter Brown “Dance With Me”
Patrice Rushen “Forget Me Nots”
Barry White “Can’t Get Enough Of Your Love Babe”
You can tune in at 2 PM and hear our second installment. Later today, it will go up in the Podcast section of The AIR website, so you can listen on demand. Let us know what you think. Mel would love to do more of these, and we plan to bring you more specials that focus on different types of music in the future. MIRRORBALL will also be replayed Saturday at 7 PM and 11 PM, Sunday at 11 AM and Tuesday at 1 PM. We’ll probably sneak in a few more airings during the week.
Sydney was friends with the entire band back in her days in pirate radio and Greenfield’s death from Covid-19 on May 3 hit her pretty hard. She introduces the show, and then turns it over to his music for the remainder of the two-hour episode.
Sydney did not give us a full playlist, but I know that the show opens with “Golden Brown,” which was based on a harpsichord riff Greenfield came up with, and it includes songs that Greenfield sang lead on with The Stranglers, some of his more memorable keyboard lines with the band, and work he did outside the band with Celia and The Mutations, The Purple Helmets and in collaboration with The Stranglers’ bassist, J.J. Burnel.
The show concludes with “Waltzinblack,” his tour-de-force with the band.
Sydney’s Big Electric Cat is produced at Haversham Recording Institute in London, and can be heard every Friday at 3 PM, with replays Saturday afternoon, Tuesday at 7 AM, Wednesday at 8 PM and Thursday at Noon, exclusively on The AIR. You can also hear select episodes of Sydney’s Big Electric Cat as part of the overnight Haversham Recording Institute marathon that starts every Monday at 11 PM.
And that is it for this week’s PopCulteer. As always, check back for fresh content every day, including all our regular features.