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3 Chords and the Truth: What's not to like?
August 30, 2014 01:56 AM PDT
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Today on the Big Show, your Mighty Favog jumps the shark.

I find it isn't too bad if you drink enough Geritol beforehand.

Let's just say that my parents were playing the long game with all those Saturday evening force feedings of The Lawrence Welk Show all those years ago. All they needed was a Magnavox console and a captive audience.

Well played, damn you.

For more information on your humble host's condition, kindly tune in to the new edition of 3 Chords & the Truth, airing right now somewhere on the Internets. Really, this week's program is an exceptional one. Even the, well, you know. . . .

I can't say much more about it right now. It's way past my bedtime, and I think I may have iron-poor blood.

It's 3 Chords & the Truth, y'all. Adios, au revoir, auf wiedersehen . . . good night!

3 Chords and the Truth: Takin' it easy
August 12, 2014 10:17 PM PDT
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The Big Show is early this week.

Things to do, places to be.

So, here's 3 Chords & the Truth now, because I'll be busy taking it easy later. A mini-vacation, don't you know?

And technically, the mini-vacation already has started, so you're on your own in finding out about this week's edition of the Big Show.

Embrace the mystery -- although I'm reliably informed that a great way to find out about this week's program is to listen to it. Whatever.

Do what you will. I'm off duty.

It's 3 Chords & the Truth, y'all. Be there. Aloha.

3 Chords and the Truth: Confusing kids, one at a time
August 09, 2014 12:38 AM PDT
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The older I get, the more I understand that I come from a place and time that's largely indecipherable to the younger among us.

Typewriters . . . mystery. Cassette decks . . . enigma. Rotary-dial phones . . . puzzle.

OHMYGAWD! You didn't have Internet back in the '70s? How did you live?

Well, in an analog manner, I guess.

Thus, in an age when something as pervasive as radio is becoming an anachronism like the rest of my life, perhaps it's time to explain a few things.

For example, you know this week's edition of 3 Chords & the Truth? Lots of radio stations and programs -- which we listened to . . . and we liked it -- were kinda sorta like the Big Show.

THERE was some variety going on. Top-40 meant just that . . . the top records on the pop chart, no matter what they might be.

You also had things like progressive-rock stations. Freeform stations and shows.

Freeform? Like, they'd play ANYTHING?

Yep. Just like 3 Chords & the Truth. You never quite know what's coming next. Back in the day, we found that adventurous and stimulating. ANDFORGOD'SSAKEDON'TTAKETHEBROWNACID, MAN!!!

I don't know where that came from.

Anyway, once there was this thing called radio. Take a seat, kid. Let me tell you about it and play you some stuff. You ever seen an LP record or a 45 before . . . ?

IT'S 3 Chords & the Truth, y'all. Be there. Aloha.

3 Chords and the Truth: 3 Chords town
August 01, 2014 11:42 PM PDT
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When you're alone and life is making you lonely, you can always go . . . to 3 Chords town.

When you've got worries, all the noise and the hurry seems to help, I know -- in 3 Chords town.

Just listen to the music from Omaha, by God, Nebraska. Linger on the website where the Big Show's there for playing. How can you lose?

The sounds are much brighter there -- you can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares.

So go to 3 Chords town! Things will be great when you're in 3 Chords town! No finer place for sure, 3 Chords town . . . everything's waiting for you!

DON'T hang around and let your problems surround you, there is great music . . . in 3 Chords town. Sooner or later, you'll click on these links, and you'll be in . . . 3 Chords town!

Just listen to the rhythm of a classic rock 'n' roller. You'll be dancing with 'em too before the show is over -- happy again. The sounds are much brighter here; you can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares.

So go to our town. Music's the best in Big Show town. Click on the bloody link -- 3 Chords town! Good times for you tonight -- my town! You're music future's bright . . . this town!

Just take my word for it . . . 3 Chords & the Truth is the bomb!

Downtown.

Uptown.

Midtown.

Outta town.

IT'S 3 Chords & the Truth y'all. Be there. Aloha.

3 Chords and the Truth: Hot day, cool tunes
July 25, 2014 09:40 PM PDT
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Oh, the weather outside is frightful, but the A/C inside's delightful.

But the summer heat's bad enough for us to go . . . let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

OK, your Mighty Favog has many powers but -- unfortunately -- the ability to make it snow at the end of July is not among them. So we'll do the next best thing on this week's 3 Chords & the Truth.

We'll play an extra cool, extra long set of music designed to conjure up the cooling power of December in the middle of meteorological Hades. It's sort of like Prof. Harold Hill's "think system" of music education, only we're thinking winter in hopes of taking the edge off of summer.

APART FROM that, you could say the show has its highs and lows this go around. Of course, even the lows -- and the Lo's -- are high points. As we strike a mortal blow against Yankee imperialism.

What? Hell, yeah!

Huh? You bet!

Confused? Relax. We got this covered.

All you have to do is listen to the Big Show, and all will become clear. Your confusion will turn into a profusion of musical enlightenment. And a cooling trend on a hot summer's day.

IT'S 3 Chords & the Truth, y'all. Be there. Aloha.

3 Chords and the Truth: Expect the unexpected
July 18, 2014 11:21 PM PDT
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Did you know that, back in 1956, you could get Elvis Presley on 78 RPM records?

You could, and my folks did . . . and we have just that on 3 Chords & the Truth this week.

That's just one of the unexpected things you'll hear on this, and every, episode of the Big Show. Because we're all about surprises. And good music.

Let's see -- what else would you like to hear about this venture into the world of 3 Chords & the Truth and the stupendous music we play?

WELL, there's all the good doo-wop and R&B this time on the program. And there's all the good jazz. And then there's some tasty tunes from the world of rock.

And, of course, then there's the. . . .

Hey! You don't think I'm going to give away all the intimate details of how this week's 3 Chords & the Truth excels, do you? C'mon, sit still for an hour and a half and find out for yourself.

It might be the most satisfying 90 minutes you'll spend this week. And we do it all over again almost every week on the Big Show. You just might learn something -- or hear something you have laid ears on in years -- and you'll have a ball doing it.

Really.

IT'S 3 Chords & the Truth, y'all. Be there. Aloha.

3 Chords and the Truth: Your musical answer
July 12, 2014 10:43 AM PDT
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This week, we answer a simple yet crucial question in putting together yet another fine edition of 3 Chords & the Truth -- did Steven Tyler always look this bad?

So we got out the vintage 1975 vinyl of Aerosmith's Toys in the Attic. And then we looked at the group shot on the back cover.

And your answer is this: Yes. Yes he did.

How Liv Tyler emerged from that gene pool, I don't know.

That's the kind of burning question we're happy to answer on the Big Show . . . and, uh, we also like to play lots of good music, too. As far as telling you anything else about this week's show, I can only shamelessly repeat what was said about the last episode of 3 Chords & the Truth.

Here you go:

THIS TIME, like every time on the Big Show, we play a little bit of this, a lot of that and some of the other thing. All of it comes with our iron-clad guaran-damn-tee that you'll love it or your money back.

Of course, the program costs you absolutely nothing, so there's that.

Then there's this: You're likely to say at least once, "My God, I haven't heard that in years!" Try that listening to the radio. You see, this little venture, hosted by your Mighty Favog, is like radio back when radio was actually radio.

Call it, if you will, freeform radio with a bigger playlist and a lot less reefer and patchouli oil. OK, maybe a little patchouli oil when the spirit moves us.

IT'S 3 Chords & the Truth, y'all. Be there. Aloha.

Four Songs: Yesterday Once More
Clean
March 21, 2008 12:40 AM PDT
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This week on Four Songs: five songs. It was necessary, one of the songs is by John Denver, and a "make good" was in order.

IN MY DEFENSE, I didn't pick the music. That was done according to what was hot with the record-buying public . . . in April 1975. Unfortunately, John Denver's "Thank God I'm a Country Boy" was big back then.

Unsurprisingly, I would have picked differently. But they don't let 14-year-old kids program Top-40 radio stations, and that's how old I was when this episode of Four Songs was done. Live. Through the facilities of the Big 91, WLCS radio in Baton Rouge, La.

In all its amplitude-modulated glory.

And glorious it was. So glorious that I was sitting at the kitchen table, early the morning of April 17, 1975, with my portable reel-to-reel tape recorder patched into the earphone jack of my clock radio to preserve a piece of WLCS forever.

It was a Thursday. Gary King was the morning man.

WLCS was one of Baton Rouge's two Top-40 blowtorches. Radio 13 -- WIBR -- was the other. 'IBR had some great jocks, and a friend of mine even was a part-timer there when I was in high school . . . but I was an 'LCS man.

No offense to WIBR.

Of course, by 1976, I was firmly in the camp of Loose Radio (WFMF during its album-oriented rock salad days). But I'll always love Double-U ELLLLLLL CEE Ess . . . even though it died in 1983, a few months after I married a KOIL woman from Omaha.

And if you're under, say, 30, you're not getting this conversation at all, are you?

LET ME EXPLAIN. Once upon a time, there was this thing called radio -- AM radio -- and we listened to it on "transistors," which were like iPods, only affordable. And better.

An iPod only can bring you the few hundred songs you load into it after illegally downloading them off the Internet or legally buying them on iTunes. But a transistor radio, that could bring you the world, baby.

All for free. And without the threat of a lawsuit by the music cops.

The world first came to my bedroom on a transistor radio tuned to WLCS. I also could tune in the whole wide world on WIBR, or maybe WTIX in New Orleans -- and sometimes KAAY through the ether from Little Rock at night -- but I mostly dug those rhythm and blues . . . and rock 'n' roll . . . and countrypolitan . . . and a bit of ring-a-ding-ding, too, on the Big 91.

What it was, was the breadth of American popular culture at my fingertips. And British Invasion, too.

Never was education so fun. I turned on the radio just to listen to some tunes, and I found myself under the spell of a thousand different tutors -- friendly voices from morning to overnight -- playing for me the breadth of musical expression . . . or at least the musical expression that charted well. It is because of 'LCS, 'IBR, 'TIX (and later, 'FMF) that this Catholic Boy has catholic tastes.

Your iPod is cool and all, but it can't do that.

SEE, THE DEAL IS that I can't repay the debt I owe to WLCS, for one. I can't repay the debt I owe to Gary King, that friendly morning voice on this episode of Four Songs.

For a spell there, King's was the voice I woke up to, got ready for school to and ate breakfast to. He played the hits and told me what the weather was outside, and Gene Perry gave the news at the top and bottom of the hour.

Back in the day, radio was a well-rounded affair.

King's also was the friendly voice that answered the studio line when an awkward teen-ager in junior-high hell would call to request a song. And his was the friendly voice that would take time to chat for a bit when that kid -- or his mother -- sometimes thought he had nothing better to do . . . like put on a morning show.

I didn't know it then, and Gary King (real name: Gary Cox) probably didn't know it, either, but what he was doing was being Christ, in a sense, to a lonely kid and his -- come to think of it -- lonely mother. I shudder to think what one of today's "morning zoo" shows would do with rich material like me and Mama.

That is, if they answered the studio line at all.

Via the AM airwaves, I made a human connection with WLCS and Gary King. I needed that. We all need that. And you can't get that from your iPod, though some of us will try to give it, because you have to work with what you have.

BEFORE APRIL 1975 was done, Gary King was gone. He originally was from Kentucky, and one day the call came from WAKY, the Top-40 powerhouse in Louisville that Gary grew up listening to.

On his last show, Gary's ending bit was "convincing" Gene Perry that he could catch a bullet in his teeth if the newsman would just help him out on the gun end. It didn't work as planned . . . which means it worked perfectly in radio's "theater of the mind."

I think I shed a tear or two.

And a couple of years later, I was learning the ropes at WBRH, Baton Rouge High's student-run FM station. And 33 years later -- after various pit stops on the air and hot off the press -- here we are at Revolution 21, trying to figure out what "radio" will be in this new millennium . . . right here on the Internet.

Thanks, Gary. I can't repay you in full, but maybe this will make a nice down payment.

On dem first day of Christmas . . .
Clean
February 13, 2008 12:52 AM PST

Here's another special audio presentation: A bit of nostalgia recorded off the TV in the early '70s in Baton Rouge.

I remembered this recording when I heard of the death of Jules d'Hemecourt, a journalism professor when I was in school at LSU . . . and the man behind "The Cajun 12 Days of Christmas" when he was news director at Channel 33 in Baton Rouge.

This must have been recorded by me, off the air, sometime around Christmas 1973. Maybe '74. D'Hemecourt, who also was the Channel 33 news anchor at the time, introduces the recording on a holiday newscast.

Back in the day.

Enjoy.

The tale of the tape
Clean
March 21, 2007 01:33 PM PDT
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Here's a special audio presentation -- don't worry, the podcast will post as usual Friday -- from Revolution 21. I thought you just might want to hear this . . . a ghost in the machine, as it were.

What it is, is a recording of legendary Alabama radio host Joe Rumore from Oct. 28, 1949 on WVOK, Birmingham. And it's an extraordinary look back 58 years across the tidal wave of change and cultural revolution that radically transformed America.

It's a look at who we used to be, and at a kinder, more gentle and humane era of broadcasting that -- to today's ears -- sounds like a just-received transmission across many light-years of interstellar space from a star system far, far away.

You can read more about it on "Revolution 21's Blog for the People" at http://revolution-21.blogspot.com/2007/03/way-we-were-1949.html.

Enjoy.

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