Darol Anger: Keepin’ It in The Fam

Monsters & Hamsters is still on hiatus, but I took a break from the break to have a chat with big-deal fiddle guy Darol Anger, who’s bringing his 5th Annual Keepin’ It In The Fam world-class string-band holiday show back to Next Stage in Putney on December 2, along with big deal banjo guy Tony Trischka, the soulful Emy Phelps, and kickass whippersnappers Grant Gordy and Ethan Jodziewicz. Songs from last year’s Fam Holiday show are sprinkled in. More info at www.nextstagearts.org

Sanity Sabbatical

Monsters & Hamsters is taking a sanity sabbatical through the end of 2016.

In addition to the usual ongoing behind-the-scenes tasks and chores around the station, brokenradiosm I’ve been trying to catch up with deferred maintenance and needful upgrades… the sorts of things that go unnoticed until stuff goes off the rails and suddenly there’s a cascading series of emergencies.

It’s too much. I can’t do it all.

The quality of Monsters & Hamsters has suffered, and you good people deserve better. And I’m getting stressed and not having fun, and I deserve better (particularly since I, like everyone else at the station, am a volunteer). Plus I wanna get the www.stage33live.com project actually rolling, which is gonna require time and effort too, and if the station falls apart it’ll mess with that. So while I’d rather do my show than station grunt work, I gotta be strategic.

Some of our other hosts from other time slots will sit in on Wednesday evenings from 7:00 to 9:00 from time to time, and when that doesn’t happen, syndicated talk programs from the Black Sheep Radio schedule that you might have missed will air.

I’ll still be poppin’ ’round the station to get things done, but I’ll be off the air until January. Catch you in 2017! Probably. Happy New Year!

Pretty Big Place: Episode #1 Throwback

Usedta was before the fluffy-chat thing I do now that I had a music show back when I first got involved at WOOL. pbpside It was called A Pretty Big Place With Lots Of Room, and my cohost was a sexy robot because I was afraid of the microphone. The very first one was six years ago next month… though it seems like much, much longer ago than that.

Tonight, we’re gonna revisit that first show for no good reason other than that I had a tooth extracted a couple days ago and I’m not feeling fit for polite company.

Here’s what’s on the menu: Shaky Hands, Nortec Collective, Sierra Leone‚Äôs Refugee All Stars, Polyrock, Times New Viking, Nils Frahm, Laura Veirs, Micachu and The Shapes, William Burroughs, Beirut, Shadowy Men On A Shadowy Planet, Ramesh B Weeratunga, Fireman, Coolhand Band, Cows, Futureheads, De Ndirande Pitch Crooners, Wahala Project, Major Lazer, Chatmonchy, Doc Watson, James Brown, Mae Shi, The Slew, Ali Farka Toure, The Others, Welder, Deolinda, Twink, King Missile, and a crazed Christina Aguilara / Velvet Underground / Communards mashup.

WOOL-FM at 91.5 locally and streaming from www.wool.fm everywhere else at 7:00 Eastern on Wednesday nights.

Luminous Crush in-studio

Laura and Ben from dream-pop purveyors Luminous Crush stopped by for an in-studio to play some acoustic-duo songs (AcoustiCrush!), spin a couple studio tracks from the upcoming full-length Luminous Crush debut CD Lumina, and have some fun. The CD release blowout show is going to be September 17 at the Wardsboro Town Hall (don’t be fooled, that’s way cooler than it might sound) in Wardsboro VT. More info at their website, www.luminouscrush.com

(Oh, there’s bonus tracks at the end of this in-studio too.)

The Ghost of Paul Revere

We caught up with Griffin Sherry of The Ghost Of Paul Revere as he took a little break from working on their new album. They’re coming to town! “We encourage a lot of dancing, a lot of stomping, a lot of singing along… expect a good long show with a lot of energy, ’cause that’s what we like to do.” The soulful and intimate all-acoustic Rockingham Meetinghouse is on track to sell out before the Sunday, September 25 (2016) show, so if you wanna go it’ll be a smart idea to nab tickets now – see www.flyingunderradar.com or www.tinyurl.com/ghost925 … More info about the band (plus tracks) at www.ghostofpaulrevere.com

Sam Creigh in-studio

Had a good time wingin’ it with Sam Creigh, careening from protest folk to cumbia to ping-pong to Mary Poppins. Got some live performances out of him, he hand-picked some CD tracks, we did a lot of yakking. Had him in for the whole show and somehow never managed to give out the guy’s website! www.samcreigh.com

The Ladles in-studio

The Ladles are out on tour and it was our good fortune that they stopped by the WOOL-FM studio to play and chat. There’s a rare confluence of strong writing, really interesting arrangements, and all-around goodness happening with these three. And they’re on the rise: their debut EP is fresh out, they’re on the Sound Of Boston short list of bands to watch in 2016, and they won the Grassroots Festival band contest just the other day. Tour dates and more info online at www.theladles.com

Lara Herscovitch interview

Lara Herscovitch was on her way back from playing at Vermont’s big annual Solarfest, and her route happened to go by WOOL-FM… so we switched on the tractor beam and pulled her in for what turned out to be a really inspiring conversation.