Download the Hunger HERE! Listen into all my shows here!
The illist villain to strike to turntable crew is coming straight at you once again, for your face, and your earholes. Better get ready, better get set, ’cause you thought you saw something, YET, Hell is in the hizzzhouse!!!
OK, I got that out of my system. Thanks.
Another Monday back in our new studio, and I’m getting used to the groove. This show is a wee bit different where the mic breaks are concerned. You’ll have to give it a listen and let me know what you think. Don’t be shy about leaving a comment.
Lots of new music, and almost all on vinyl this week. I realized that over the past 18 months, streaming from home, where I couldn’t access my vinyl, that I have a heap load of great music on my hard drives. I wasn’t about to keep that to myself.
I’m looking forward to getting some guests in the studio to interview soon. I already have my wish list, so stay tuned.
Download the Rebirth HERE! Listen into all my shows here!
532 days. That’s how long it had been since I had the pleasure of broadcasting from a radio studio. That finally came to an end Monday night as I entered the new home of Radio Valencia, now a storefront location deep in the heart of the Mission District of San Francisco.
Granted, there is work to do. We have a new mural by Alan Forbes that we need to get up, signage needs to be added on the front, new furniture purchased, and art hung on the walls, but I can tell you this is the place that I’ve dreamed about for decades. Really, decades. Have you ever seen the show “Northern Exposure“? Then you know.
Download the Disrespect HERE! Listen into all my shows here!
It’s Memorial Day, so I’m going to honor the troops (of whom I have many as friends and former students) by sticking it to the man! I’m a strong believer in a strong defense. But I am not much for spreading Democracy around the world. I think we ought to practice what we preach, and allow nations to self-actualize as much as possible. We butt our heads (and arms) into other nation’s biz a wee bit much over the years. And too many of our men and women in uniform have paid the ultimate price. I have no problem flipping the bird to the politicians who put our sons and daughters into harms way for the prize of land, labor, markets and other resources. I have yet to hear of one war we have been involved in that, at the heart of it, was about caring for human suffering. If we can’t reap some reward, we aren’t going in. Remember Rwanda?
I believe to the depth of my being, if our nation cared so much about our vets, they wouldn’t make up 50% of the nation’s homeless population. Let’s put as much effort as we do preparing them for battle, into preparing them for coming home.
So here ya go. Two hours of stickin’ it to the man.
The show starts with the final minute from my Live Bootleg Bonanza, 6-8PM. You can check that show out here. It’s Stevie Wonder (1974) & The Ramones (1977).
The Ballad of the Green Berets: Sgt. Barry Sidler Rich Man’s War: Steve Earle Butcher’s Tale: The Zombies
1916: Motorhead Lay Your Weapons Down: Rich Kids on LSD War Pigs (Live 1970 Montreux): Black Sabbath
Masters of War: Bob Dylan Wooden Ships: Jefferson Airplane An Open Letter To My Teenage Son: Victor Lundberg The Unknown Soldiers: The Doors
I Can’t Write Left-Handed Anymore: Bill Withers War/No More Trouble: Bob Marley and the Wailers X-Men Doctrine And Declaration/General P. Counterintelligence: General Patton vs The X-Ecutioners Holiday in Cambodia: Dead Kennedys
Run to the Hills: Iron Maiden The Fiddle and the Drum: Joni Mitchell Your Flag Decal Won’t Get You Into Heaven Anymore: John Prine
Machine Gun (live 12-31-1969): Jimi Hendrix (Band of Gypsies) The “Fish” Cheer/I Feel Like I’m Fixin’ To Die Rag: Country Joe and the Fish
Universal Soldier: Donovan Some Mother’s Son: The Kinks I Don’t Want To Be A Soldier, Mama: John Lennon Fortunate Son: Creedence Clearwater Revival
(What’s So Funny About) Peace, Love and Understanding: Elvis Costello
Download the Majesty HERE! Listen into all my shows here!
I was about 12 or 13, laying in my bed on a weekend morning, listening to my clock radio, set to KFOG 104.5FM, when it was worth listening to. This song came on that hypnotized me; it’s the only way to describe it, really. I was paralyzed. I could not move, and my ears did not want that song to release me from its spell. When the song ended, I knew I had stumbled across some kind of magic. I had to know what that was? Who that was? And what else awaited me?
The song, “Stuck Inside of Mobile (with the Memphis Blues Again) took me on a journey that keeps showing itself in greater and more dynamic ways over 35 years later. Bob Dylan showed me that there is more to music than what shows up on the music directors list of approved songs. It’s possible this was the song that propelled me deeper into my love of the art of radio?
I think I had my dad take me to Rasputin Records in Pleasant Hill so I could buy whatever record that song is on. I couldn’t locate Blond on Blond that day, but I did come home with the next best thing, Highway 61 Revisited. I swear I wore that copy out in a matter of months. I felt that I had discovered this deep secret: brilliant music can be longer than 2:50 long.
Along my musical journey, discovering the joy of so many great artists across numerous genres, I have
always gravitated back to Dylan. How many people have said this? How many essays have been written about the man and his lyrics, not to mention the myth of BOB DYLAN? I like not being able to separate fact from fiction when it comes to his persona. I don’t care to know the “real” Bob Dylan, when the shaman is much more interesting. And isn’t that really what he’s going for anyway?
Now, if I could just travel back to that innocent 12 year old version of me laying in bed being woken by the brilliance of Dylan, just for one moment.
I’ve been asked countless time what my favorite Dylan album is, and I have to go with “Blood on the Tracks“. It’s a summation of everything that came before, in terms of his prose. And it’s filled with emotion regarding the end of his marriage. You can feel his heart in every beat. All of his albums come close, but this one really does it for me.
What’s your favorite Dylan album? Leave a comment, and please share this with all of your Dylan-loving friends.
I merely scratched the surface with this show.
If you missed my 6-8PM live bootleg show, you can catch it by going here. I played the 90 minute “Judas” show from May 17, 1966, followed up with a few tracks from the 1975/1976 Rolling Thunder tour, and a track from the 1986 Dylan/Petty tour.
So much Bob Dylan for your earholes!!!
If you’re looking for some reading material that’ll fill up an afternoon, Rolling Stone has opened up their archives of many (all?) their Bob Dylan reviews and interviews.
Hell’s Kitchen Radio with John Hell Mondays 8-10PM Pacific Radio Valencia in SF
Download the Surprises HERE! Listen into all my shows here!
There are times that I really want to send a sternly written letter to some commercial radio station, reminding them of the disservice they are doing to their listeners. It’s almost as if they are some junkie pushing tainted drugs. The user doesn’t even know there are quality drugs down to the left end of town (or in most cases left end of the dial). In this case on the left end of the internet.
But why write a letter when I can just share this show, right? Should I send this show off to the program directors of the top commercial stations so they can see how much better they can be (that sounds pretty egotistical, and I didn’t even need to reread it), or shall I just go to where their listeners hang out and offer them a better bang for the buck.
Allow me to bang you. Bang you all.
It was tax day on Monday, so there are a few tunes that fit some kind of money theme, but other than that, I’m all over the place in a good way. I even improvise a bit more than usual and through in the 23 minute epic, “Echoes”, by Pink Floyd. It’s the greatest version you have ever heard. Tune in to find out why. I’m also falling in love with Mike Krol. This guy…sheesh!
I’ve been pulling out a number of anniversary box sets lately. CSN&Y, Ray Charles, The Who. I have new Ty Segall later in the show that will kick your ass. And that’s what you want in a radio station, shows that will kick your ass in ways you didn’t know you needed.
Download the Joy Ride HERE! Listen into all my shows here!
Some nights I like to play music for you like we’re hanging out on the floor in front of my dad’s Hi-Fi, and I’m really excited to pull this record out, hopefully to blow your mind. I hope there are moments during this show that blow your mind. I hope that you take a moment to search out these bands, and support them by purchasing their music.
Download part one: the live shows Download part two: the studio Funk HERE! Listen into all my shows here!
It’s James Brown’s birthday. Whatever you’re doing isn’t better than what I’m playing for the next four hours. Get on the good foot, I’m starting out with two hours of live JB throughout the years, then two hours of studio selections from across his illustrious career, focusing on my favorite era 1968 – 1975.
I was lucky to have seen the Hardest Working Man in Show Business perform live three times, and each was better than the previous. I was also honored to have interviewed him in 1992 (or was it 1993?) soon after he got out of prison, during my Friday 10am-2pm jazz, soul, funk show on KFJC, Temple of the Bird. He graciously offered my 15 minutes to talk about his music and not to bring up prison, women, or drugs. Thanks James.
The opening two hours, which you can find here, feature two shows from two of his hot 70s-era bands.
July 1971 – Apollo Theater, New York City, New York
December 18, 1977 Stars at The Hotel Bradford, Boston MA
The second half of my show is all about the hot studio sessions that had us up and sweating on the good foot. See the set list below and get up on the get down.
James Brown: Nancy Dupree Lickin’ Stick, Lickin’ Stick: James Brown Say It Loud (I’m Black and I’m Proud): James Brown Message From James Brown Super Bad: James Brown
Doin’ It To Death: Fred Wesley and the JBs Let’s Go Get Stoned: James Brown Let’s Make Christmas Mean Something This Year: James Brown America Is My Home, Pt. 1: James Brown
Let A Man Come In And Do The Popcorn: James Brown Down And Out In New York City: James Brown Brother Rap: James Brown Please Please Please 1974: James Brown
More Mess On My Thing: The JBs Funky Music Is My Style: The JBs Shake It Baby: Maceo and the Kings Men Get Up, Get Into It, Get Involved: James Brown
I Know You Got Soul: Bobby Byrd If You Don’t Give Me What I Want: Vicki Anderson What So Never The Dance: Bootsy Collins
Talkin’ Loud and Sayin’ Nothing: James Brown My Thang: James Brown
Download the Greeting HERE! Listen into all my shows here!
Hosting a special is always a treat. I like the work once I’m inspired. A few weeks ago this “Hello/Goodbye” idea popped into my head. It’s not very original, but it’s what you do with it that counts. How would you fill a two hour show of only songs that have the theme in the title, or are obviously about the theme?
I need to thank my buddy Michael for a few suggestions as well as many of the KALX staffers for throwing a few hundred titles my way. Wow! It’s an embarrassment of riches. I only have two hours to fill, so I wanted hour one to be the “Hello” theme, and hour two to close it out with the “Goodbye” theme. I opened and closed with Cheap Trick: “Hello There” and Auf Wiedersehen”. To segue from one to the other, I used the over-obvious Beatles tune “Hello/Goodbye”.
During my research I discovered there are countless songs about goodbye. It makes for a more emotional tale, than a song featuring a greeting. That being said, I think I represented both salutations well. You be the judge.
Next week it’ll be mostly new music, and we’re getting closer to being in our new studio on 22nd Street in San Francisco. Let the excitement commence!
Download the Ride of your Life HERE! Listen into all my shows here!
A night with nothing to prove. After last week’s country/americana show, I feel like I needed to cleanse myself with a variety of genres. That’s the usual as you may know. There’s lots of music that’s new to you on here. Ace of Cups first ever release (2018), Joe Strummer compilation, prank phone calls to religious radio stations, Ethiopian jazz master, Chilean psych, Irish neo-folk, the king of Be-bop, a rediscovered folk gem, rumbling guitar, punk, funk, and junk.
See how far I go for you?
In the weeks to come I’m planning a few specials: Hello/Goodbye, days of the week, time of day, and a multi-part special on John Dwyer of Thee Oh Sees, Oh Sees, OCS, Damaged Bug, Yikes, Coachwhips and many more bands.
So much to look forward to, coming up Monday’s 8-10PM Pacific on Radio Valencia.
And don’t forget about John Hell’s Live Bootleg Bonanza, Monday’s 6-8PM Pacific, where I pull full shows from my vast live bootleg collection. Take a look at this blog for previous shows. Tune in every Monday to see what I have planned.
Download the Ride of your Life HERE! Listen into all my shows here!
There’s something about hosting a thematic special that really gets the juices flowing. I don’t know if this was really a special, but I stuck with one genre for the most part on this show. My fabulous daughter, Little Lauson Hell tells me she doesn’t like Country music. To which I respond, you just haven’t really heard good Country music. Like anyone with musical taste, commercial anything is usually crap, that’s goes double for Country, but there have been some real treats in the history of this genre. I merely scratched the surface by playing some of my favorite artists. And it’s not hit-heavy as you will see.
And I didn’t program this show chronologically. So there.
I hope you find some treats in here. That’s the plan, right?