The Blues with Lee Hay

Saturdays at 11 PM

In honor of the 75th anniversary of King Records this month, the last special I'm producing has a potpourri of topics from a look at the Tokyo Happy Coats and Playhouse in the Park's production of "Cincinnati King" to Darren Blase's efforts to showcase his King Records collection at Shake It Records, plus the preservation work being done to save the King Records studio on Brewster Avenue.  

This King Records Potpourri special will air on Saturday night, September 22nd, at 11pm and again Sunday evening, September 23rd, at 7pm.

This presentation is on the third floor of the Main Library downtown, and at 2pm right before Roy Baugher's slideshow, Darren Blase from Shake It Records will be on the first floor talking about the comeback of vinyl recordings.  A great afternoon of musical history Saturday afternoon, September 22nd, at the Main Library downtown!

This King Records special will feature interviews with Waddell Falland & Jimmy Railey who were both members of The Solars, Bobby and the Expressions, & The Famous Flames, two of the Sisters of Righteous, Dr. Kay Robinson, and two of The Dapps.  Waddell Falland and Jimmy Railey spoke with me in 2007.  Geneva L. Kinard Woode & Denise Kennard Crowley from the Sisters of Righteous talked with Brian Powers about their careers at King Records as teenagers and backing up numerous King musicians including Hank Ballard.  Dr. Kay Robinson shared her thoughts on recording a gospel album for JBP.  Dave Parkinson, saxophonist, & Eddie Setser, guitarist, from The Dapps, also share their memories of working for James Brown Productions.  

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In honor of the 75th anniversary of King Records, music historian Brian Powers spoke with a number of folks this summer about their work with James Brown Productions which was based in the King Records building on Brewster Avenue.  From 1965 to 1971, James Brown's company created a new genre of music producing many hit records and was involved in civil rights and the Black Pride movement.  During this hour, which airs on WVXU/WMUB on Saturday, September 8th at 11pm and repeats on Sunday, September 9th at 7pm, you'll hear interviews with Brown's publicity director/tour manager Alan Leeds, his arranger David Matthews, and from musicians Carmon DeLeone and Chuck Sullivan, as well as related music.

King Records Month in Cincinnati kicks off Saturday, September 1st, at Listermann Brewing Company with their latest 4-pack of limited edition beer, “The King of Them All,” in honor of King Records.  “The King of Them All” is a salute to the day, 75 years ago in September, 1943, when Grandpa Jones and Merle Travis recorded the first songs for King Records. 

In honor of the 75th anniversary celebration of King Records in September, Lee Hay and Brian Powers have teamed up for another series of specials about some of the musicians who recorded at King Records.

The first special will feature "The King of Hillbilly Piano Players," Moon Mullican who recorded at King Records from 1946 until the late 1950's and was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1951.

The special will air on WVXU/WMUB on Saturday evening, September 1st at 11pm; Sunday, September 2nd at 7pm; and Labor Day, Monday, September 3rd at 1pm.

Oscar Pepper, Moon Mullican's nephew, spoke with Brian Powers by phone from his home in Texas on February 25, 2018.  He shares memories of Moon's early life in Texas, the Grand Ole Opry, his songwriting career & royalties, and also Moon's funeral and gravesite.

This week's blues show at 11pm, Saturday, August 18th, is a trip down the Mississippi to New Orleans, because Trombone Shorty's Voodoo Threauxdown tour is coming to PNC Pavilion Saturday night, August 25th.  

The annual Cincy Blues Fest is returning to Sawyer Point this weekend for a one-day musical event, Saturday, August 11th.  The festival runs from 2:30 - midnight on two stages with the headliner Delbert McClinton taking the stage at 9pm, Saturday night.

Other bands on the Budweiser Main Stage include Leroy Ellington's Sacred Hearts, The Noah Wotherspoon Band, plus Chuck Brisbin & the Tuna Project.  The Arches Boogie Piano Stage will feature Ben Levin, Ricky Nye, and Judy Carmichael among others that day.

Tyler Zoller

The Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band is playing the Bacon, Blues & Brews festival in Batesville, Indiana, Saturday, July 28th.  This is a  3-piece country blues band from southern Indiana with a large fan base here in the area.  Update: This festival is already sold out.  No tickets remain.  There were only 450 available to start with according to the festival's website.

This summer, we're sharing specials about King Records that I've produced over the past 10 years or so leading up to the 75th anniversary celebration of King Records on August 25th.  Details of the event are still being worked out, so as soon as they become available, I'll post on this website.

On this King Records special on July 7th at 11pm, you'll hear about jump blues artist, Bull Moose Jackson, who ruled the R&B charts from the late 40s and early 50s. Bull Moose Jackson, best known for “Big Ten Inch,” had his first big hit in 1947 with “I Love You, Yes I Do,” which is widely accepted as the first R &B single to sell a million copies. Jackson had 12 hits from 1946 to 1952 on the R& B chart.

On this King Records rockabilly special, Saturday, June 30th at 11pm, the King of Covers, Delbert Barker, is featured.  Mr.

This Saturday night, June 23rd at 11pm, you'll hear a King Records special about three musicians who recorded country music there.  In 2008, I spoke with Orangie Ray Hubbard, Jr Spivey, and Herman Cress about their work at King Records.  Orangie Ray Hubbard came into the studio on 5/20/08 and returned a second time with Jr Spivey on 8/5/08.  I also had a  conversation with Herman Cress on 10/14/08.  Herman Cress played upright bass in Orangie Ray Hubbard's band with Jr Spivey on guitar.

During this one-hour special, you'll hear Orangie talk about his roots in Barbourville, KY, his life in Detroit, and his move back to Cincinnati and his musical career.   He discusses payola, Rusty York's studio, Syd Nathan, and Louis Innis.  Jr Spivey shares his memories of recording with another King Records musician, Hank Ballard, as well as recording with Orangie Ray Hubbard and playing with Lonnie Mack. Herman Cress also remembers Ray Pennington, Lucky Records, and playing with Orangie.  In addition to these interviews, you'll hear some of the songs recorded by Orangie Ray Hubbard at King Records and another by Herman Cress.

Beginning this Saturday night, June 16th at 11pm, on The Blues, we're going to repeat some of the many specials I've produced over the years since 2007 about King Records and the talented musicians who recorded there.  This King Records special begins with a 2010 phone conversation I had with Bill Beach who was born in Glencoe Kentucky in 1932.  

This week's blues show, Saturday, June 9th at 11pm, starts off  with guitarist Eric Clapton and Ronnie Kole from New Orleans.  The second set features Charlie Musselwhite, Emmylou Harris and Anders Osborne.  And the second half of The Blues includes the music of Harry Connick, Jr.; Johnny Adams; Nina Simone; B.B. King; Ike & Tina Turner; and Delbert McClinton.

Walker Funeral Home / Provided

Waddell Falland, who recorded on King Records, passed away May 29, according to Walker Funeral Home. He along with Jimmy Railey were both members of The Solars, Bobby and the Expressions and The Famous Flames.  

This week's edition of The Blues, Saturday, May 26th at 11pm, features interviews with three blues musicians:  Ben Levin, EG Kight, and Marcia Ball, plus songs by Trombone Shorty and Galactic who are coming to the PNC Pavilion in August.


This week's blues show, Saturday, May 19th at 11pm, begins with the legendary Koko Taylor along with Robben Ford and Ronnie Earl & the Broadcasters in the first set.  The second set features Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble, Ruth Brown, Brad Hatfield, and guitarist Johnny A.  Joe Louis Walker starts off the third set followed by Debbie Davies, Tommy Castro & the Painkillers, and Joanna Connor.  And, John Mayall takes us out with "Congo Square."

The Blues: 5.12.18 show

May 10, 2018

On this week's blues show, Saturday, May 12th at 11pm, we'll start off with a song from Tom Jones and Jeff Beck followed by the Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band and Hugh Laurie.  The second set features Tom Waits, Delbert McClinton, Marcia Ball, and Ray Charles.  Irma Thomas starts off the third set along with Johnny Adams, Derek Trucks & Susan Tedeschi, and Terence Blanchard.


This week's blues show, 11pm Saturday night, May 5th will feature a variety of musicians including Chris Stapleton and Deep Purple.  The first set begins with Alabama Mike from a compilation release in honor of Howlin' Wolf.  This tune's followed by Howlin' Wolf, R.L. Burnside, and The Medicine Men with Lance Boyd who'll be performing Friday, May 11th on the Cincinnati Guitar Festival stage at the Madison Theater in Covington.  Brian O'Donnell previews the event with Bob Nave in an interview that'll air on VXU's "Around Cincinnati" program Sunday night, May 6th at 7pm.

This week's show at 11pm, Saturday, April 28th, starts off with a little boogie woogie from our own Ricky Nye followed by Beau Jocque & the Zydeco Hi-Rollers, the Jambalaya Cajun Band, and Zachary Richard.  The second set features the Honey Island Swamp Band, Galactic, Dr. John, and the great Louis Armstrong.  The Rebirth Brass Band starts off the third set followed by the legendary Professor Longhair, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, the Pentones and finally Johnny Adams.

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival is running from April 27th to May 6th this year.  If you're a music fan and have never been, I'd strongly suggest you add a visit to your bucket list.

The Blues: 4.21.18 show

Apr 22, 2018

This week's blues show, Saturday, April 21st at 11pm, starts off with local guitarist Kelly Richey, Gov't Mule, and the Sonny Moorman Group.  The second set features Eric Clapton, The Doors, Derek & the Dominos, and Tina TurnerBob Dylan, Corey Harris & Henry Butler, and Ricky Nye end the show in the third set.

This week on the Blues, Saturday, April 14th at 11pm, the first set includes songs by Tony Joe White, Patty Larkin, Kurt Elling, and Dave Frishberg.  The second set of vocalists include Joss Stone, Mavis Staples (Memorial Hall 4/20) and Irma Thomas.  And, the show closes with Tommy Castro (Southgate House Revival 4/20), Leon Russell, Shemekia Copeland, and two from Johnny Adams.

Cincinnati's a popular stop for many nationally known blues artists, and we also are lucky to have so many talented musicians making Cincinnati their home.  So, I thought it'd be fun on this blues show, Saturday night, April 7th at 11pm, to spotlight musicians who have gigs booked here.

The first set begins with blues legend Buddy Guy followed by Walter Trout, Sonny Moorman who has an incredibly busy schedule, and Noah Hunt who's coming to the Ludlow Garage with Jason Dennie.

Mavis Staples is playing Memorial Hall and will probably sell out her April 20th show.  Also heard in the second set of The Blues are the Blind Boys of Alabama, Keb'Mo, and Taj Mahal.  And, the show ends with Todd Rundgren, Peter Frampton, and Steely Dan.

The title track from Marcia Ball's new Alligator release, Shine Bright, begins this week's blues show on Saturday night, March 30th at 11pm.  Also featured in the first set is music from King Records legend Freddie King, as well as Robbie Robertson & Galactic, and finally Robben Ford and the Blue Line.

Muddy Waters begins the second set followed by Debbie Davies, Shannon Curfman, and Gov't Mule.  And ending the program are songs by Hot Tuna, Dr. John, and Tom Waits.

This week's blues show, Saturday, March 24th, at 11pm starts off with a song by EG Kight followed in the first set with music from Eva Cassidy, Garland Jeffreys, and Sweet Honey in the Rock.  The second set features an acapella Todd Rundgren, Corey Harris & Henry Butler, Marc Broussard, and Gov't MuleJohnny A. begins the last set which also includes Curtis Salgado, Honey Island Swamp Band, and ends with vocalist Janiva Magness.

The Blues: 3/17/18 show

Mar 19, 2018

This week's blues show, Saturday, March 17th at 11pm, starts off with another song from the new Jimi Hendrix studio release, Both Sides of the Sky.  This is followed in the first set by songs from Charlie Musselwhite and two from Delbert McClinton who'll be headlining the Cincy Blues Fest in August.  

The second set features Curtis Salgado, Shemekia Copeland and Big Joe Turner.  And, turning to the last set of the blues show, music from a new release by Chicago's Nick Moss Band, Lou Reed, Tom Waits and Lucinda Williams.

This week on The Blues, Saturday night, March 10th at 11pm, you'll hear a set devoted to the Goshorn Brothers at the end of show.  But, we'll begin with a retrospective of sorts, starting off with two songs from a new studio Jimi Hendrix cd, Both Sides of the Sky.  One of the songs is "Woodstock" with Stephen Stills doing vocals/organ.

Other musicians you'll hear during this hour include Janis Joplin, the Allman Brothers, Leon Russell, Joe Cocker, Derek & the Dominoes, and Cream.


The Blues: 3.3.18 show

Mar 1, 2018

On this week's blues show, Saturday, March 3rd at 11pm, Big Maybelle starts the music off with "Rain Down Rain."  She's followed by songs from Nina Simone, Ruth Brown, and Lou Rawls.  The second set features Etta James, Long John Baldry, Hugh Laurie and Leon Russell.  Johnny Adams begins the third set of the show with the title track of "Real Me," and then you'll hear from Chet Baker as well as Ann Chamberlain & Eddie Morgan.  Ending this edition of The Blues, Ernestine Anderson and Billie Holiday.

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