Nakedly Examined Music is a podcast about making music: Why do we do it? Why do we do it the way we do it? Mark Linsenmayer interviews songwriters and composers famous and otherwise about specific recordings, which are presented in full on the podcast.

NEM#131: Ward White Audited

Ward has issued about ten releases of lyric-driven, stylish pop since 2003. We discuss the title track from Leonard at the Audit (2020), “Titans” from Diminish (2018), and the title track from Pulling Out (2008). Intro: “Sabbath” from Ward White Is the Matador (2014). End: “Bubble and Squeak,” also from the new album. For info see wardwhite.net.

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NEM#130: Mark Farner (ex Grand Funk Railroad) Back from the Dead

Mark led Grand Funk Railroad through 13 albums in the 70s and early 80s and has had around eight solo releases.

We discuss “Nadean” from For the People (2006), “Not Yet” from Some Kind of Wonderful (1991), and the title track of Born to Die by Grand Funk Railroad. End song: “Take You Out.” Intro: “I’m Your Captain” from GFR’s Closer to Home (1979). For more see markfarner.com.

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NEM#129: New People – Matt Ackerman and Mark Lint on Collaboration

Your host dissects the collaborative chemistry with guitarist Matt Ackerman as the two front men of the band New People (2006-2013).

We discuss “Down So Low” (intro: “Love Is the Problem”) from The Easy Thing (2008), “Manager” from Impossible Things (2011), and “Local” and “At the Time” from Might Get It Right (2013), plus “We Who Have Escaped” (later in 2013, released on Songs from the Partially Examined Life). Intro: “Love Is the Problem” also from The Easy Thing. For more, see newpeopleband.com and marklint.bandcamp.com.

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NEM#128: Roger Joseph Manning Jr.’s Crazy Fun with Arrangements

Roger rose to fame as keyboardist/songwriter for Jellyfish in the early ’90s, then formed Imperial Drag, The Moog Cookbook, TV Eyes, backed Beck, and finally released two albums under his own name starting in 2006. He’s recently released a solo EP and one with The Likerish Quartet that reunites him with some other members of Jellyfish.

We discuss “Lighthouse Spaceship” by The Lickerish Quartet from Threesome, Vol. 1 (2020), “The Turnstile at Heaven’s Gate” from Catnip Dynamite (2008), “Time to Time” by Malibu (a solo techno project) from Robo-Sapiens (2007), and listen to “Operator” from his solo Glamping EP (2018). Intro: “The King is Half-Undressed” by Jellyfish from Bellybutton (1990). For more, see thelickerishquartet.com and rogerarranging.com.

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NEM#127: KatieJane Garside Is an Impulse of Chance

KatieJane gained fame fronting British grunge band Daisy Chainsaw, left after their first full album but resumed the project under the name Queenadreena for four albums in the ’00s, then partnered with Chris Whittingham in 2007 to live on a boat and play as the stripped-down Ruby Throat for four albums. That band has now become loud again and been re-christened Liar, Flower.

We discuss “My Brain is Lit Like an Airport” and hear the title track from Geiger Counter (2020), then look back to “Hu’u” by Ruby Throat from Baby Darling Taporo (2017) and “Lesions In The Brain” by Lalleshwari (a one-off solo moniker) from Lullabies in a Glass Wilderness (2007). Intro: “Love Your Money” from Daisy Chainsaw from Eleventeen (1992). For more, see katiejanegarside.com.

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NEM#126: Jim Peterik Eyes Much More Than the Tiger

Jim has released 30+ albums since 1964 with Ides of March, Survivor, Pride of Lions, et al. Intro: His biggest hits, the title tracks of Vehicle (1970) and The Eye of the Tiger (1983).

We discuss his new solo single “Empty Arena” and two Ides of March tunes, “Friends Like You” from Play On (2019) feat. Mindi Abair and “L.A. Goodbye,” recorded in 1992 but originally from Common Bond (1971). End song: “The Spirit of Chicago,” a 1992 recording released on Ideology: Version 11.0. For more, see jimpeterik.com.

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NEM#125: Victor DeLorenzo (ex Violent Femmes) Starts with Drums

Victor started as a singer/songwriter, drummed with the Femmes for five albums in the ’80s, and has since recorded six solo releases and five more with nine thirteen, plus other collaborations, jazz jamming, and work in the theater.

We discuss “Invisible Shadows” from Tranceaphone (2020), “Carry Me” from Victor DeLorenzo (2013), “Arco, Pizzicato” by Nineteen Thirteen from The Dream (2016), and listen to “Audrey” from Pancake Day (1996). Intro/outro: “World Without Mercy” by Violent Femmes from The Blind Leading the Naked (1985). More at victordelorenzo.weebly.com.

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NEM#124: Alev Lenz’s Tracts of Blood and Sisterhood

Alev started in Germany with her metal band “Alev” in the early ’00s and has released three atmospheric, idea-filled solo albums since 2009 plus several soundtracks and collaborations.

We discuss “The Chair” (and at the end listen to “Cigarettes & Blow”) from 3 (2019), plus the title track from Two-Headed Girl (2016), “Flowers of Love” from Storytelling Piano Playing Fräulein (2009), and “In this Mouth” by Anoushka Shankar feat Alev Lenz from Love Letters (2020). Intro: “Fall Into Me” from the Black Mirror Soundtrack (2016). For more, visit alevlenz.com.

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NEM#123: Rick Kemp (Steeleye Span) Slows Down

Rick played bass on 15 albums with Steeleye Span between 1971 and 2016 and had released five solo albums since 1996.

We discuss “Race Against Time” from Perfect Blue (2018) and two Steeleye tunes: “Cromwell’s Skull” from Dodgy Bastards (2016) and “Samain” from They Called Her Babylon (2004). We conclude by listening to “Bachelor’s Hall” from Steeleye’s All Around My Hat (1975). Intro: “John Barleycorn” from Present – The Very Best of Steeleye Span (2002). For more, see rickkemp.co.uk.

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NEM#122: Jack Hues (from Wang Chung) Plays Jazz and Prog

Jack fronted Wang Chung for five albums in the ’80s, left the limelight to produce, and got a jazz combo going by 2000 which he’s released five albums with, reformed Wang Chung, and only now is having a debut solo release, the double album Primitif.

We discuss “Whitstable Beach” from that album, “Class War and Sex War” by Jack Hues and the Quartet from A Thesis on the Ballad (2015), and “Brahms Blues” by The-Quartet from Illuminated. (2006) We conclude by listening to “To Live and Die in L.A.” by Wang Chung from Ochesography (2019).

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NEM#121: K.C. Clifford on Brokenness and Power

K.C. has created seven releases of confessional folk (sometimes gospel, sometimes country) since 2000. We discuss “No More Living Small” and listen to “You Couldn’t Stay” from her 2020 self-titled album, then talk about “Broken Things” from Orchid (2010) and “Find My Way Home” from Teeth-Marks on My Tongue (2004). Intro: “Emily” from Times Like These (2000). For more see kcclifford.com.

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NEM#120: Steve Harley is Wiser and Less Hungry

Steve started fronting Cockney Rebel in the early ’70s and has released a dozen albums of of narrative-driven, tuneful songs.

We discuss “Compared with You (Your Eyes Don’t Seem to Age)” and listen to “Only You,” his two originals from his new solo album Uncovered (2020) then look back to “Faith & Virtue” from Stranger Comes to Town (2010) and Cockney Rebel’s “Bed in the Corner”/”Sling It” from The Psychomodo (1974). Intro: “Make Me Smile (Come Up and See Me)” by Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel from The Best Years of Our Lives (1975). Learn more at steveharley.com.

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NEM#119: Chris A. Maxwell: The Power of What You Don’t Fully Understand

Chris fronted Gunbunnies in the early ’90s and was then a member of Skeleton Key, but he’s best known for being half of the production team Elegant Too. Since 2014 he’s released two solo albums.

We discuss two songs from 2012’s New Store No. 2, the title track and “Most of What I Know I Learned from Women.” We then talk about Elegant Too’s work with They Might Be Giants (feat. Doughty) on “Mr. Xcitement” from Mink Car (2001) and also working with St. Vincent on the Bob’s Burgers tune “Bad Girls” (2013). We conclude with Chris’s “Imaginary Man” from Arkansas Summer (2016). Intro: “Stranded” by Gunbunnies from Paw Paw Patch (1990). Outro: Elegant Too’s theme for ESPN’s 30 for 30. For more see maxwellsongs.com and elegatnttoo.com.

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NEM#118: Matt Wilson (Trip Shakespeare) Is Still a Writer

Matt released 4 albums and got on a major label with Trip Shakespeare in the late ’80s, released a solo album in ’98, ran bands with fellow Tripper John Munson for three albums over many subsequent years, ad has now released his first album as Matt Wilson & His Orchestra, When I Was a Writer.

We discuss “Decent Guy” and listen to the title track from that album and look back to “Dreams” by Twilight Hours from Stereo Night (2009) and “Sun Is Coming” from his solo album Burnt, White, and Blue (1998). Intro/outo: “Toolmaster of Brainard” by Trip Shakespeare from Are You Shakespearienced (1989). For more see minneapolismatt.com.

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NEM#117: Chris McQueen (FORQ, Snarky Puppy): Like Fusion, But Cool

Chris has played guitar for Snarky Puppy since it started in 2004, has led rock bands and explored acoustic guitar duets. We discuss “M-Theory” by FORQ from Four (2019), the title track to Western Theatre by Matt Read and Chris McQueen (2019), and “Coven” by Snarky Puppy from Immigrance (2019), and end with “Strut” by Foe Destroyer from their self-titled album (2013).

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NEM#116: hackedepicciotto: Nomadic Cinematographers

Einstürzende Neubauten’s Alexander Hacke and artist/singer Danielle de Picciotto have released seven albums together since 2011, the last four as hackedepicciotto.

We discuss “The Banishing” and “Third From the Sun” from The Current (2019) and “Propehcy” from Menetekel (2017), plus intro music is “Let There Be Joy” from Joy (2018). We conclude by listening to “Survivors” from Danielle’s solo album Deliverance (2019). For more, see hackedepicciotto.de.

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NEM#115: Julie Slick: Pedal Art Visualizer

Julie joined the Adrian Belew Power Trio in 2006 and released two solo albums starting in 2010. She then joined another bassist, Marco Machera for four albums, the last three as Echotest. Why two basses? Because Julie uses tech to change the sound of her bass to allow her to cover an orchestra’s worth of parts.

We discuss “Ladies’ Legs at the Temperature Hotel” and “No, You Are Dead/The Gate of Light” by Echotest from Daughter of Ocean (2019), plus “Pi” from her solo album Terroir (2012), and listen to “Supercell” by Echotest from From Two Balconies (2017). Intro/Outro: “Mela” from Julie Slick (2010). For more, see julieslick.com.

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NEM#114: Michaela Anne’s Hyper-Reflective Country

Michaela has released four albums of carefully styled, lyrically rich country since 2011.  From her latest, Desert Dove (2019), we discuss the title track, plus you’ll hear “By Our Design” as the intro and “Somebody New” as the closer. We also discuss “Worrying Mind” from Bright Lights and the Fame (2016) and “Is This What Mama Meant” from Ease My Mind (2014). For more, see michaelaanne.com.

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NEM#113: Bid (Monochrome Set): All-Permissive British New Wave Forever!

The Monochrome Set has under the leadership of Bid released 15 albums of eccentric British pop since 1980, and he’s had another nine as Scartlet’s Well. His songs often employ a ’60s dance vibe, literary lyrics, and a try-anything approach to arrangements.

We discuss “Eux Tous” from Fabula Mendax (2019), “Walking with the Beast” from Dante’s Casino (1990), “Adeste Fidelis” from Love Zombies (1980), and conclude listening to the title track of Spaces Everywhere (2015). Intro: “Eine Symphonie Des Grauens” (a 1979 single). For more, see themonochromeset.co.uk.

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NEM-Pretty Much Pop Crossover: The Singer Not the Song w/ Ken Stringfellow (feat. Game Theory)

Do you just embrace the pure sound of music or does context matter to you, i.e. the artist’s intentions and body of work?

Ken Stringfellow (Posies, R.E.M., Big Star), previous NEM guest for #39, joins Mark plus Erica Spyres and Brian Hirt for a special podcast-crossover episode to talk about what grabs us about music, it it gets to your ears, singers vs. songwriters, the concept “genius,” and how this attitude towards music translates to our intake of other media (e.g. favorite film directors).

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com, nakedlyexaminedmusic.com, and support us at patreon.com/nakedlyexaminedmusic to get a special, lengthy New Year’s update from Mark.

Also, check out Andy Frasco’s World Saving Podcast.