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#171: Ben Vaughn’s Primitive Fever Dreams

Ben started releasing sardonic retro rock records with the Ben Vaughn Combo in the early '80s, and has now released over 20 of them exploring various genres, while also working on TV soundtracks like Third Rock from the Sun and That '70s Show, hosting a radio show, and producing for several artists including Ween. We discuss "Wayne Fontana Was Wrong" from The World of Ben  Continue Reading …

NEM#170: Bob Mould From Hüsker Dü to Sugar to Now

Bob released six albums with Hüsker Dü in the '80s, went solo, had a wash of fame as Sugar in the early '90s, and has released around a dozen solo albums. We discuss  "Forecast of Rain" from Blue Hearts (2020), "I Don’t Know You Anymore" from Beauty & Ruin (2014), "JC Auto" by Sugar from Beaster (1993), and "In A Free Land" by Hüsker Dü, 1982 singe remixed for Savage  Continue Reading …

NEM#169: Wesley Stace (aka John Wesley Harding) Likes Words

Wesley started performing as John Wesley Harding in the late '80s (often eliciting comparisons in his early work to Elvis Costello), moved from England to the U.S. in 1991, and has 20+ releases, switching to his own name in 2013 as a result of his success as a novelist. We discuss "The Impossible She" (and end by listening to "Come Back Yesterday") from Late Style (2021),  Continue Reading …

NEM#168: Clive Nolan (Arena, Pendragon, etc.) Moves Forward Relentlessly

Clive is a keyboardist, orchestrator, singer, and composer of three musicals and several concept albums as a solo artist or collaborator. He's played with Pendragon since 1986 and has led the bands Shadowlands and Arena since the 90s. We discuss "Dragon Fire" from his most recent solo album, Song of the Wildlands (2021), "Silent Words" from his musical King's Ransom (2017),  Continue Reading …

NEM#167: David Christian (Comet Gain) Sings for the Awkward and the Wayward

David has released 8 albums and some EPs as the London-based Comet Gain since 1994, putting out literate, energetic, sloppy rock, typically splitting the lead vocals with a female voice. As a pandemic project, he just released his first solo album. We discuss "Mum’s and Dad’s Other Ghosts" by David Christian and the Pinecone Orchestra from Those We Met Along the Way (2021),  Continue Reading …

NEM#166: L. Shankar’s World of Violin and Voice

Shankar played with John McLaughlin in Shakti in the mid-70s and has released over 25 solo albums while backing A-list artists including Phil Collins, Peter Gabriel, Frank Zappa, Elton John, Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton, Metallica, Korn, and more. We discuss "Can’t Wait" (feat. Jonathan Davis) from Chepleeri Dream (2020), "Back Again" from M.R.C.S. (1991), and "Darlene"  Continue Reading …

NEM#165: Paula Cole Beautifully Picks at Wounds

Paula Cole (Grammy-winner with two huge hits) has released 10 studio albums since 1994 after backing Peter Gabriel on his Secret World tour in the early '90s. We discuss "Blues in Gray" from Revolution (2019), "Father" from 7 (2015), and "Hush, Hush, Hush" from This Fire (1996). We also listen to "Steal Away/Hidden in Plain Sight" from American Quilt (2021). Intro: "I Don’t  Continue Reading …

NEM#164: James McMurtry Doesn’t Have to Make Sense

...But he usually does.  The legendary Texas singer-songwriter has put out 10 studio albums since 1989. We discuss "If It Don’t Bleed" (and listen to "Blackberry Winter") from The Horses and the Hounds (2021), "How’m I Gonna Find You Now" from Complicated Game (2015), and "Be With Me" from It Had to Happen (1997). Intro: "Choctaw Bingo" from Saint Mary of the Woods  Continue Reading …

NEM#163: Lilli Lewis Is Not Just a Jazz-Singing Pianist

Lilli is also an activist, folk-rock diva, record label executive, and daughter of a preacher man. She's released 10 albums and 3 EPs since 2003. We discuss "Coffee Shop Girl" and listen to "Copper John" from Americana(2021), "Warm and Gentle People" from We Belong (2019), and "Song for the End of Days" from Castles of Her Crystalline (2005). Intro: "Lady" from The Coming of  Continue Reading …

NEM#162: Ray Benson (Asleep at the Wheel): Texas Swing for Half a Hundred Years

Ray started Asleep at the Wheel in 1969 and has put out 26 albums of original tunes and classic covers while touring constantly. We discuss the title track from Half a Hundred Years (2021), "Pedernales Stroll" from Keepin' Me Up Nights (1990), and "Am I High" from The Wheel (1977). Intro: "The Letter (That Johnny Walker Read)" from Texas Gold (1975). Closer: "The Road Will Hold  Continue Reading …

NEM#161: Chuck Prophet Is On the Couch

Chuck joined Green on Red as guitarist in 1985 and has released 15 solo albums of tuneful guitar rock since 1990, touring constantly and doing a lot of co-writing. We discuss "Womankind" from The Land That Time Forgot (2020), "Your Skin" from Bobby Fuller Died for Your Sins (2017), "Castro Halloween" from Temple Beautiful (2012, the extended single version). We conclude by  Continue Reading …

NEM#160: John McCutcheon Learns the Lessons of Folk

John has released 45 albums since 1975 of original folk, traditional folk, children's music (garnering six Grammy nominations for those), and instrumentals: He is fluent on guitar, banjo, violin, dulcimer, and more. His songs very often tell stories, and we discuss several of those: "Atonement" from Bucket List (2021), "Soup" from John McCutcheon’s Four Seasons: Wintersongs  Continue Reading …

NEM#159: Steve Bartek (Oingo Boingo) Is a Writer, Not Just an Arranger

Steve is best known as guitarist/arranger for Oingo Boingo through their eight albums from 1981-1995 and for following its leader Danny Elfman into a life creating movie soundtracks, often for filmmaker Tim Burton. However, his activity as composer goes all the way back to the late '60s and continues today. We discuss "Tango" by jackiO from their self-titled album (2019),  Continue Reading …

NEM#158: Dar Williams: Songs as Thought Processes

Dar has released 11 albums on labels since 1993 of highly literate, introspective folk-pop songs. We discuss "Berkeley" (and listen to "Today and Everyday") from I'll Meet You Here (2021), "Empty Plane" from Emerald (2015), and " Are You Out There" from End of the Summer (1997). Intro: "As Cool As I Am" from Mortal City (1996). For info see darwilliams.com. See the new video  Continue Reading …

NEM#157: DEVO’s Gerald V. Casale: Guises of Social Critique

Jerry has co-fronted Devo since its founding in the mid-70s, releasing nine albums with them, but his solo career has been sporadic, with a release as Jihad Jerry & the Evildoers in 2006 and a few singles. We discuss his new song and video "I’m Gonna Pay U Back," and one of those Jihad Jerry tracks (that album now reissued to include the new track) "The Owl," and the  Continue Reading …

NEM#155: Melvin Gibbs Protests w/ Bass, Jazz Composition, Production, Sound Design

Melvin has played bass on over 200 albums since 1980 in the worlds of jazz, rock, and hip-hop, and has numerous songwriting credits, doing stints with Defunkt, Arto Lindsay, Rollins Band, SociaLybrium (with Bernie Worrell), The Zig Zag Power Trio (with Vernon Reid), etc. We discuss his solo tune featuring Kokayi "Get Some" from 4+1 Equals 5 for May 25 (2021),  the title  Continue Reading …

NEM#154: Chris Connelly (ex-Revolting Cocks/Ministry): From Apocalyptic Industrials to Poets in Love

Chris started in the Scottish electronic band Finitribe in the early '80s and then moved to Chicago in 1988, doing stints in Revolting Cocks, Ministry, Pigface, et al, before embarking on a 23-album solo career. We discuss "A Phantom Marriage" from The Birthday Poems (2021) feat. Monica Queen, the title track from Bloodhounds (2018), "De Testimony" by Finitribe from Let the  Continue Reading …

NEM#153: Steve Kilbey (The Church) Reveals the Secrets to Being Prolific

Steve has written over 1000 songs across 17 Church albums starting in 1980, 13 solo albums and numerous collaborations. His style is theatrical and psychedelic, and his lyrics aim for "maximum ambiguity." We discuss "Love Song Yet to Be Named" by Steve Kilbey and The Winged Heels from The Hall of Counterfeits (2021) and some tunes by The Church: "Another Century" from man  Continue Reading …

NEM#152: Glen Phillips (Toad the Wet Sprocket) Builds His Capacity

Glen led smooth alt rock legends Toad the Wet Sprocket from '88 to '97 through six albums, has released 7 often folky solo albums (and 3 more Toad albums since their reunion) since then plus various side projects. We discuss "Old Habits Die Hard" by Toad (a 2020 single), "Leaving Oldtown" from his latest solo release, Swallowed by the New (2016), and "One Wind Blows" from  Continue Reading …