Mike Portnoy shares his 10 Essential Neal Morse songs. Mike Portnoy and Neal Morse have been friends and collaborators for 20+ years through four bands. They first connected while Mike was in Dream Theater and while Neal was in Spock’s Beard. In this monster FOUR HOUR episode, Mike shares his personal list of Neal’s essential songs – spanning from Spock’s Beard through Neal’s solo work, Transatlantic, and The Neal Morse Band. Mike also shares some great stories about how they first connected, how they work together, what about Neal’s music inspires him personally and professionally, and he shares some great insights to their working relationship as well as their personal friendship. Nothing beats one friend celebrating the work of another!
Andy Timmons shares his 10 Essential Brian May and Queen songs. Andy has been a lifelong Queen fan, even crediting Brian May with his discovery of harmony while studying songs from A Day At The Races as a young guitarist (a story he shares in this episode for the first time), but it was the recent success of the Bohemian Rhapsody film that inspired him to revisit the entire Queen catalog for a very serious, deep dive. Through sharing his ten essential Brian May/Queen songs, Andy tells great stories about connecting with these songs personally, the talent behind them and what sets these songs apart, the unique qualities of Brian’s guitar tone, playing, and singing, even personal experiences of playing with a 1947 King George Sixpence – the same coin Brian famously uses to play his Red Special.
We close out the episode with Andy’s gorgeous solo guitar rendition of Queen’s You Take My Breathe Away/Bohemian Rhapsody – a MUST hear!!
Chris Trapper of The Push Stars shares his 10 Essential Colin Hay songs. Chris has gone from being a fan of Colin’s solo work to a longtime partner on the road and a dear friend to the legendary Men At Work frontman. Through sharing his ten essential Colin Hay songs, Chris tells great personal stories about how he first discovered Colin’s solo work, how he first starting performing with him at festivals and as an opening act, firsthand memories of Colin’s struggles with lawsuits, death, life, career ups and downs, and what about Colin’s work, humility, humor and spirit inspires and influences him.
Oh, and which of Colin’s songs does Chris consider a classic on par with Imagine and A Change Is Gonna Come? Listen and find out.. it’s a good one.
Sean Watkins of Nickel Creek and The Watkins Family Hour shares his 10 Essential Glen Phillips of Toad The Wet Sprocket songs. Sean has gone from being a fan of Toad The Wet Sprocket to writing, recording and touring with Glen Phillips in a variety of configurations including the Works Progress Administration and the Mutual Admiration Society. In this episode he shares details of that connection, what about Glen’s music inspires him musically, lyrically, and performance-wise, he provides some truly wonderful insight into some of Glen’s greatest songs in and out of Toad The Wet Sprocket, how and why it is that Glen just gets better and better, and much more.
Danny Seraphine shares his 10 Essential Chicago songs. Spanning all eras of the iconic band Chicago, Danny picks his favorites, shares memories of early drumming influences, some childhood memories, some really detailed and wonderful stories about the formation of Chicago, colorful memories of playing a mob bar with an owner that insisted on singing Sinatra songs with the band, locking with Terry Kath as a bass player and guitarist, the very first time the original Chicago lineup played together, meeting and working with percussionist Laudir de Oliveira, what happened to Al Kooper’s video recording of the band’s first studio sessions, sharing influences with The Bee Gees and Earth, Wind & Fire, getting fired from the band, what it meant to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with his old bandmates, where he is now with performing live, and much more.
Dave Bickler shares his 10 Essential Survivor songs. Spanning all eras of the classic melodic band Survivor, Dave picks his favorites, shares memories of joining the band, the production struggles in making the first album with Ron Nevison, Bruce Fairbairn, and John Kalodner, memories of making the classic videos, recording Caught In The Game, getting fired and his recovery from vocal chord surgery, what he learned through that, what it was like seeing Survivor carry on without him, first meeting Jimi Jamison, their friendship, what it meant to tour and share the stage with Jimi, the struggles within the band, and what we can expect from his upcoming debut solo album, and much more.
Ricky Phillips Picks The Essential Ronnie Montrose
Ricky Phillips of Styx, The Babys, and Bad English shares his 10 Essential Ronnie Montrose songs. From Van Morrison to Edgar Winter to Herbie Hancock to Montrose to Gamma, the work of under appreciated guitar god Ronnie Montrose has influenced countless fans and colleagues for decades – Ricky Phillips of Styx among them. In sharing his 10 essential Montrose songs, Ricky also shares how he first discovered Ronnie’s music, how he connected with Ronnie, what set Ronnie apart as a versatile guitarist and songwriter, the joys of jamming and playing with Ronnie before his passing, what it meant to Ricky to complete and release Ronnie’s final recordings on the 10×10 record, which of Ronnie’s friends did he pull in to help honor him, and much more.