Todd Morgan & The Emblems and music appreciation

It would be easy for Todd Morgan & The Emblems to follow the often tread cover band path, but it has raised the bar with songwriting influenced by rockabilly, jazz, Big Band, and rock. Todd Morgan discusses his influences, and the band’s third recently released CD, “Sweet Pretender.”

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Independent radio and education

Corporate radio is struggling, and for good reason. Listeners are demanding variety, and finding it online or via satellite. How can people hear their favorite types of music (with unlimited artists), and support their local community?  Dennis Newhall of Sacramento’s K-ZAP and Joe Parente of Process Theater, Inc. discuss their joint effort in bringing back a local favorite radio station of pub rock and blues into non-profit status, and assisting students with learning the evolving craft and technology of radio, and what the media has to offer in the future.

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Cigar box guitars and ukeleles

Cigar box guitars are a blast to build and play, from actual cigar boxes to jello molds to auto parts. Will King of  Cigar Box Nation talks a little cigar box guitar building 101.

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Prison blues and kazoos

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Why should real prisoners have all the fun? Captain Rufus T. Whizbang (Neil Hillel) and the Ophir Prison Marching Kazoo Band and Temperance Society, Ltd. have entertained thousands of people around California and Nevada with their wacky musical presentations and skits. Rubber Ducky, anyone?

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Rap and students

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Andre Justice  (“AJ”) loves the ladies, and loves to rap. He also happens to have cerebral palsy, so he needed a little assist to achieve his musical goals. He approached Amaru Yawo-El (“Düc”), a special educational assistant at Luther Burbank High School, who also performs hip hop. The power duo have recorded some tracks, and plan on assisting other students with learning disabilities to sing, perform, and record rap with their Anybody Can Rap (ABC-Rap) 

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Cowboy music and heritage

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Do you know the difference between cowboy music and country music?

Ron Scoffield has always had a connection with the Old West. He repairs/restores horse drawn carriages and stagecoaches (in fact, he participated in the Bicentennial Wagon Train), and plays guitar while singing cowboy music. During the summer, his Red Mule Ranch hosts Cowboy Campfire Nights, which offers cowboy music, cowboy poetry, and a BBQ. Ron’s brother, Gary, was in town to join him on stage, so I sat down with both of them as they sang a couple of songs, and shared their stories.

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Appalachian dulcimers and heritage

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The Appalachian dulcimer’s unique sound resonates on a cellular level with those of Irish or Scottish heritage, and is just plain lovely to the rest of us. Robert Scott of Where Ravens Fly discusses the history of the instrument, and plays a couple of songs on a Appalachian dulcimer he designed.

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