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Above The Basement - Boston Music and Conversation

Above The Basement is a Boston based podcast hosted by Chuck Clough and Ronnie Hirschberg that features casual and candid discussions with local, national and international musicians, artists, producers and others from Boston and beyond. The conversations offer experiences from those shaping our music community and for whom music is a passion. You hear their stories, hardships faced and overcome...and why they love what they do. While music is the common thread, Above The Basement has evolved into conversations that harness human interest, culture and community, bridging into discussions about health, science, education and other aspects of life.
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Above The Basement - Boston Music and Conversation
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Now displaying: February, 2018
Feb 28, 2018

Mary Gauthier didn't pick up a guitar until later in life, and although finding success as a Boston restaurateur, certain events forced a change. Ten albums later she continues to tell stories of her past, her own healing, and the search for honesty and truth.

Mary has lived through some challenging experiences and now she shares the songwriting pen and paper with US Veterans to tell their own stories through the Songwriting With:Soldiers program. 

We talked with Mary prior to her acoustic show at Boston’s brand new City Winery.

Afterwards we were fortunate and thankful to meet with a US Marine, veteran Bill Auger, who shared the story of his first songwriting experience with professional songwriter Darden Smith, and how the experience and the songs changed his life for the better.

Bill is joined by Songwriting With:Soldiers co-founder Mary Judd, who talks about the genesis, growth and unique aspects of their mission.

Song List:

All songs off the Rifles and Rosary Beads album

Song 1: Soldering On
Song 2: Bullet Holes in the Sky
Song 3: Rifles and Rosary Beads

Feb 24, 2018

Dr. Jay Keyser is known to many as MIT Professor Emeritus of Linguistics. He’s written several books and countless essays and poems throughout his prolific career centering in his love for language. Jay is a jazz trombonist in the highly regarded Aardvark Jazz Orchestra, which happens to be one of the oldest continuous jazz ensembles in the country.

Whether you know Jay as a writer, poet, musician, philosopher or teacher, it’s clear when you talk with him there is a thirst for knowledge and true love of life.

Jay talked to us about his experience with a life changing event in 2014, when an accident left him without any movement of his extremities at the age of 79.

Defining resilience, Jay candidly reports on his incredible recovery, his difficult yet exciting new chapter in music and writing and also his relationship with his wonderful wife.

Song List:

All songs performed by the Aardvark Jazz Orchestra
Composer Mark Sumner Harvey

Song 1: Spaceways (Passages)
Song 2: March of the Booboisie (Exocations)
Song 3: I Hear America Calling (Evocations)

Live Song:

Song 1: Sunny Side of the Street (music composed by Jimmy McHugh and lyrics by Dorothy Fields)

Feb 14, 2018

Massachusetts native Mark Erelli is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer and has been in the Boston music scene as a professional for almost 20 years.

He just released Mixtape – a compilation of covers from musicians who inspire him.

We had a great conversation covering his high school bands, the link between science and music, his move from entomology to full time musician, his thoughts on collaboration in the writing process and also the importance of reading instructions on smoke machine use.

Song List

Song 1: Brokedown Palace (Mixtape)
Song 2: Basement Days (Little Vigils)
Song 3: French King (For a Song)

Live Songs

Song 1: Ophelia (Mixtape)
Song 2: Against All Odds (Mixtape)

Feb 7, 2018

Chuck and Ron know all their listeners have frequently pondered the following question:

What do their Mom’s think of Above The Basement?

They decided to get to the bottom of it! After a lovely brunch at Woods Hill Table they sat with professional mothers Gloria Clough and Judy Hirschberg. They pestered them with questions and let them tell embarrassing stories about them - all the while fishing for compliments that only a mother could give.

Song List:

Song 1: Maggie (Ron Hirschberg - 1995)
Song 2: Sometimes (After The Frost - Northern Point) - 2010)
Song 3: This Time (Last Call For Opinions - The Butler Frogs)

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