The Blues With Lee Hay

Saturdays at 11 PM
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Halloween Special on The Blues

Oct 28, 2020

 

It's a Halloween special on this week's blues show, Saturday, October 31st, at 11pm.  You'll hear many of my favorite musicians including Leonard Cohen, Dr. John, Tom Waits, and Etta James.  Christopher Walken reads Edgar Allan Poe's famous work, "The Raven," with appropriate spooky sound effects.  And the special ends with "O Death" by Ralph Stanley followed by the Stanley Brothers' classic "Rank Stranger" which is my favorite song.

This is my last program for WVXU.  After a 45-year radio career and 36 years at WVXU, I've decided to retire from broadcasting.  So, thanks for listening to my shows over the decades I've been on-the-air.  Stay safe, and remember that music heals.

Doug Yeager

Fifty years ago, a music venue opened at the corner of Vine and Calhoun Streets in Clifton near the campus of the University of Cincinnati.  Reflections became a destination for music fans around the region and now- famous musical acts from around the country.

Some Personal Favorites on The Blues

Oct 16, 2020

On this week's blues show, 11pm Saturday, October 17th, you'll hear some of my favorites.  The first set features music from Gov't Mule, Bobby McFerrin, Johnny Adams, and Diana Krall.  Tom Waits begins the second set followed by Dr. John, Garland Jeffreys, and Ry Cooder.  And the show ends with songs by Delbert McClinton, Susan  Tedeschi, Jonny Lang, and Jimi Hendrix's version of "The Star Spangled Banner."

 

This week on The Blues, you're in for a treat, Saturday night at 11pm, October 10th. I spoke with Gary Golio, an award-winning author who writes books for children about famous musicians like Carlos Santana, Bob Dylan, and Jimi Hendrix which was a New York Times bestseller. On this special, you'll hear about two of his other books.

The first about Blind Willie Johnson, Dark Was the Night: Blind Willie Johnson's Journey to the Stars and the other about Billie Holiday, Strange Fruit: Billie Holiday and the Power of a Protest Song.

There'll be songs from both, along with Nina Simone's version of “Strange Fruit,” a song by Sonny Rollins, plus an interview with John Coltrane by Carl-Erik Lindgren during one of Trane's tours with Miles Davis.

Female vocalists are the focus on this week's blues program airing at 11pm, Saturday, October 3rd.  The show begins with Bettye LaVette, Abbey Lincoln, Billie Holiday, Nina Simone, and Etta James in the first set.  

Bettye LaVette's going to start touring again in December.  Abbey Lincoln was married to legendary drummer Max Roach for 8 years, and Etta James was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993.

The second set starts off with Aretha Franklin's version of Adele's "Rolling in the Deep," followed by Bonnie Raitt, Janis Joplin and Shemekia Copeland.  

NatGeo's filming a docu-series about Aretha Franklin, "Genius: Aretha" which is finally wrapping up in Atlanta due to a pandemic stoppage.  Bonnie Raitt was part of Farm Aid 2020 last Saturday, 9/26, and Shemekia Copeland is scheduled to perform in a festival up in Michigan, Saturday, 10/3.

Songs from Marcia Ball, Cassandra Wilson, Irma Thomas, and Koko Taylor end this edition of "The Blues."  Marcia Ball's got a really fun website which includes a recipe for "Emergency Chicken Gumbo."  

A Walk Into the Past on The Blues

Sep 23, 2020

This week on The Blues, 11pm, Saturday, September 26th, we're going to take a trip back into my past and some of the musicians I listened to back in the day.  The show begins with Ten Years After followed by Bob Dylan, Galactic, and Mick Weaver's version of "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" in the first set.

The second set features music from the great Mose Allison, Bruce Cockburn, Al Jarreau, Prince, and Phoebe Snow.  The third set begins with guitarist Peter Frampton along with Rahsaan Roland Kirk (born in Columbus, Ohio), Taj Mahal, and the show ends with the Goshorn Brothers doing Pure Prairie League's "Two Lane Highway."  Pure Prairie League is celebrating their 50th anniversary this year.

Taj Mahal's going to perform next Thursday, October 1st, at the 31st International Bluegrass Music Awards which are going to be streamed starting at 8 o'clock that evening.

From Diana Krall to Miles Davis on The Blues

Sep 17, 2020
Wikipedia

I want to share some softer music this week on the show, 11pm, Saturday night, September 19th.  A song from Diana Krall starts the program followed by "Round Midnight" by Chet Baker and Harry Connick, Jr.'s version of "Love for Sale."  Diana Krall's got a new album coming out Sept. 25th with Jeff Hamilton and John Clayton, two of the musicians backing her on this release entitled, ”This Dream of You.”

You'll hear three vocalists in the second set starting with Holly Cole, Jimmy Scott, an instrumental by John Coltrane, and ending with k.d. lang.   Here's a quote from Trane in 1966, less than a year before he passed away, that's significant:  

I know that there are bad forces, forces that bring suffering to others and misery to the world. I want to be the opposite force. I want to be the force which is truly for good.”

This program ends with vocalist Kurt Elling, who will perform on an online jazz benefit in Pinecrest, Florida, on December 12th ,and "My Funny Valentine" by Miles Davis from his "Muted Miles" album.  

I saw Miles perform three times, twice at Music Hall and the last concert at Municipal Auditorium in New Orleans on 4/27/91, a few months before his death.  I had a ticket for Harry Connick, Jr.'s show at the Saenger Theatre, his first back home in front of his friends and family, and then after a few songs, hustled over to Municipal Auditorium where B.B. King was finishing up his opening set before Miles came on stage.

A Nod To Stevie Ray Vaughan

Sep 8, 2020

The inspiration for this blues show is a 2+ hour documentary about Stevie Ray Vaughan that I watched last week.  I started taking notes, and this show is the result which airs at 11pm, Saturday, September 12th, 2020.  The show begins with SRV's "Texas Flood" in light of the hurricane hit Texas took recently. This song is followed by music from Lonnie Mack, Albert King, and Cream, all of whose guitar work influenced SRV.

Although the Grammy Museum is closed, you can go to their website for a look at their digital SRV exhibition.

 

John Lee Hooker, The Yardbirds, Johnny Winter, and Jimi Hendrix are all included in the second set of this nod to SRV.  And the program ends with the Allman Brothers Band and two more songs by Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble.

Links: 

article about SRV's guitars

Another article about SRV's guitars from guitar. com

Lonnie Mack's influence in SRV's song, "Scuttle Buttin'"

Set list for SRV's Riverbend concert 6/24/90

A Visit With Boogie Woogie Begins The Blues

Sep 2, 2020

This week's blues show, Saturday, September 5th at 11pm, starts off with a song,  "How Long How Long Blues," that I heard recently while watching a movie.  I looked up a version of it and then decided to continue the first set of tonight's show with boogie woogie music.

Wikipedia

I got an email last week from a listener who wanted to hear Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton's version of "Hound Dog," so that song begins the show this week, Saturday, August 29th at 11pm.  According to Wikipedia, she was the first to record "Hound Dog," in 1952. This song became her biggest hit, #1 for 7 weeks on the Billboard's R&B chart in 1953 selling almost 2 million copies.

 

She's followed by Chris StapletonGeorge Thorogood & the Destroyers, and Bruce Springsteen's "Pink Cadillac" in the first set.  The second set is all Allman Brothers-related music starting with Duane Allman, then the Allman Brothers Band, Gov't Mule, and finally the Tedeschi Trucks Band.  And the program ends with Derek and the Dominoes from 1971, "Have You Ever Loved a Woman."

 

A Touch of the 60's on The Blues

Aug 17, 2020

This week's blues show, Saturday night at 11pm, August 22nd, starts off with one of my favorite songs from back in the day, "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" by Cannonball Adderley.  You'll also hear songs by Bill Withers (who passed away earlier this year), Bobby McFerrin, and Garland Jeffreys in the first set.

Jeff Beck sets the stage in the second set with a song featuring the vocal work of Rod Stewart.  This is followed by music from Ike & Tina Turner, Van Morrison & Joey DeFrancesco, Jimmy McGriff's "I'm Walkin'," and the classic "See See Rider" by Jimmy McGary.  A documentary about Jimmy McGary was released last year entitled, The Best Jazz You Never Heard.”

The last set features Deep Purple's take on "Roadhouse Blues," "Green Onions" by Booker T & the MGs, and Janis Joplin's "Mercedes Benz" ends the show.  Booker T's written an autobiography, Time is Tight: My Life, Note by Note, and Deep Purple released their 21st album a couple of weeks ago.

This week's blues show, Saturday, August 15th at 11pm, starts off with songs by Derek & the Dominos followed by Duane Allman and Delbert McClinton.  The second set features music from the Tedeshi Trucks Band, the Goshorn Brothers, Marc Broussard, and an instrumental by Peter Frampton.  And the program ends with songs by local guitarist Noah Wotherspoon, Coco Montoya, Long John Baldry, and Ry Cooder.

(Please note that this program was supposed to air on August 8th but was postponed due to a technical glitch.)

A Musical Tribute to Rep. John Lewis

Jul 30, 2020

This week on The Blues, I'm going to share some of the long list of songs which I compiled during this week while watching the coverage of the nation saying farewell to civil rights icon, Rep. John Lewis.  Hearing his speeches over the years brought up memories of the struggles of so many civil rights activists and also the memory of hearing of the deaths of Robert Kennedy and  Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

BB King's Daughter On This Week's Blues Show

Jul 22, 2020

This week's blues show, Saturday, July 25th, 11pm, starts off with a song from "The Daughter of The Blues," Shirley King.  The nickname comes from being the daughter of the legendary BB King.  During the rest of the first set, you'll hear music from Dr. John, Etta James, Freddie King, and John Mayall.

A Birthday Celebration On The Blues

Jul 16, 2020

This week's blues show, Saturday night, July 18th at 11pm, features the music of Lonnie Mack, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, Little Freddie King, Sleepy La Beef, and Tony Joe White.

The Blues Is Back!

Jul 10, 2020

After several months of repeating specials, management finally gave me the okay to start recording new blues shows from my home computer.  So, this Saturday night's program, July 11th at 11pm, will feature a couple of new songs plus some favorites.  It's taking some time getting used to this new system of working on my computer producing this, so thanks for your patience.

wikimedia commons

On July 4th, 2020 at 11pm, you'll hear a special re-broadcast of a special I produced in 2019 featuring a conversation between Ron Esposito and Doug Yeager during his visit to Cincinnati in November, 2018. 

Ron Esposito welcomed Doug Yeager into WVXU’s studio to talk about Josh White’s career.  Yeager represents the estate of Josh White and is also Josh White, Jr.’s manager. This one-hour special originally aired on February 9, 2019,  two days before Josh White’s birthday on February 11th (1914). 

bigjoeduskin.org

Lee Hay and her guests pay tribute to Cincinnati stomp-blues legend Big Joe Duskin.

Women of the Blues!

Mar 12, 2020
Michael Wilson

The spotlight is on the women of the blues on this week's blues show, Saturday, March 14th at 11pm.  The first set features Bonnie Raitt, Marcia Ball, Ernestine Anderson, and Phoebe Snow.  During the second set, you'll hear songs by Shemekia Copeland, EG Kight, Shannon Curfman, Kelly Richey, and Aretha Franklin.  And, ending the show, there's music from Joss Stone, Debbie Davies, Susan Tedeschi, Janis Joplin, and Mary Pinckney.

This week's blues show, Saturday evening, March 7th at 11pm, starts off with Eric Bibb, Prince, Nina Simone, and Ann Chamberlain & Eddie Morgan.  The second set includes music by Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble, Tommy Castro, the Allman Brothers Band, and ends with Derek Trucks & Susan Tedeschi.  And the show ends with songs by Robert Plant & Lil' Band o' Gold, Tom Waits, Ken Nordine, Terence Blanchard, and the Blind Boys of Alabama.

This week's blues show, Saturday, February 29th from 11pm-midnight, features four songs in the first set: Hoots & Hellmouth, Galactic, Trombone Shorty, and Frank DuMont.  You'll hear Dr. John, the Monty Alexander Trio, and Sonny Landreth in the second set followed by Delbert McClinton, Dwight Yoakam, Leon Russell, and Aretha Franklin.  John Mayall from 1969 closes out the evening's presentation.

Delbert's coming to Ludlow Garage on March 20th, and the Cincinnati Guitar Festival's coming up April 18th at Riverfront Live on Kellogg Avenue.

The first set of this Saturday's blues show, February 22nd, includes music from Madeleine Peyroux, Cassandra Wilson, Dr. John, and Eric Bibb.  The second set features songs by BB King/Eric Clapton, Kombo, and Gov't Mule.  And the last set begins with Koko Taylor, Duke Robillard, and then Mark Murphy and Ken Nordine (who passed away 2/19/19).

Play It Forward has two events coming up: Flying Leapfest at the 20th Century on 2/29 and the Cincinnati Guitar Festival at Riverfront Live...4343 Kellogg Avenue...4/18.  Tommy Emmanuel's at the Taft 3/13, and Delbert McClinton's back in town at Ludlow Garage 3/20.

I thought it'd be fun during this Valentine's weekend. 2/15 at 11pm, to share some of my favorite lovey-dovey songs.  So the show starts off with music from Aaron Neville, Eva Cassidy, Mark Murphy, and Etta James' "At Last."

The second set features songs by Tom Waits, Delbert McClinton, Leon Russell, and Hank Crawford's "Misty."  Al Jarreau's "Ain't No Sunshine" starts off the third set followed by Aretha Franklin's, "Love for Sale," Gov't Mule, and Bruce Cockburn.  And the show ends with Diana Krall's "Peel Me a Grape" and Chet Baker's "You're My Thrill."

Bob Nave's Final Farewell Information

Feb 11, 2020
Chuck Madden

Bob was a friend who shared many interests like NASCAR, jazz, blues, radio, and life.  We'll miss him.

Chuck Madden

This week on The Blues, Saturday, February 8th at 11pm, a tribute to Bob Nave who passed away last week.  His obituary will be published by The Cincinnati Enquirer on February 9th, and Play It Forward is planning a musical celebration in honor of Bob next Sunday, February 16th from 2-7pm at The Redmoor in Mt. Lookout.

The rest of this week's blues show features music in the first two sets by musicians including Curtis Salgado, Eric Clapton, Red Garland, and Etta James.

This has been a sad week for many of us who have known Bob Nave for years.  Bob contributed to a number of my specials including ones about Janis Joplin, Tim Goshorn, and Kenny Poole.  Plus, he interviewed a number of folks for "Around Cincinnati."  So, it was hard to hear of his passing earlier this week.  Details of a memorial service are still pending.  

In this week's blues show, Saturday, February 1st at 11pm, you'll hear from a number of female musicians including Jonell Mosser, Joan Armatrading, Susan Tedeschi, Sweet Honey in the Rock, and k.d.lang.  You'll also hear from Keb' Mo' & Joe Cocker in the first set; John Hammond, Bob Dylan, and the Goshorn Brothers in the second set; and Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble, plus Leonard Cohen in the last set.

This week on The Blues, Saturday night at 11pm, January 25th, the show begins with a song written by Jimmy Smith and performed by Joey DeFrancesco, "Bayou."  Songs by Ruth Brown and Hugh Laurie fill out that set.  

Music by Tony Joe White, Garland Jeffrys, Steely Dan, and Honey Island Swamp Band are included in the second set.  You'll hear music from Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble, Cyndi Lauper, and Peter Frampton in the third set.  And, the show ends with Delbert McClinton and Marcia Ball.  Delbert's coming to Ludlow Garage March 30th.

Rose Music Center website

Blues legend Buddy Guy and guitarist Jonny Lang will hit the road on a joint tour this summer. The tour will include a stop in Huber Heights, OH at Rose Music Center on Saturday, July 18th and the next night in Cincinnati, OH at PNC Pavilion on Sunday, July 19th.  Tickets for both shows go on sale to the public at 11am, Friday, January 24 at Ticketmaster.com and PNCPavilion.com.  

The Story Behind Bluesman Robert Johnson

Jan 19, 2020

In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend, on Saturday night, January 18th at 11pm on The Blues, you'll hear a conversation between Ron Esposito and Bruce Conforth, one of the authors of the book, "Up Jumped the Devil: The Real Life of Robert Johnson." Their phone interview was recorded on June 12, 2019.

This book has been nominated for the Penderyn Music Book Prize, the only UK-based book prize specifically for music titles including history, theory, biography, autobiography now in its 6th year.  The 2020 award ceremony will take place on Sunday, March 29th.

During their conversation, Mr. Conforth stated that this book was a result of 100 years of combined research by both authors.  The book goes into a detailed account of the life of this mysterious bluesman who only recorded 29 songs during his career and passed away at the age of 27.

He said that nothing made it into this book until the fact had been verified several times through various means of documentation including census records, birth or death certificates, etc.

Noah Wotherspoon Band Leads Off The Blues!

Jan 9, 2020

This week's blues show, Saturday, January 11th at 11pm, starts off with the Noah  Wotherspoon Band followed by music from Kurt Elling, Dave Frishberg, and Ann Chamberlain & Eddie Morgan.

The second set features Aretha Franklin, Charlie Musselwhite, Otis Redding, and Billie Holiday.  And, we'll end the show with songs from Leonard Cohen, Bobby McFerrin, the Blind Boys of Alabama, and the Allman Brothers.

A great quote from Bobby McFerrin's website:  “Listening to Bobby McFerrin sing may be hazardous to your preconceptions.  Side effects may include unparalleled joy, a new perspective on creativity, rejection of the predictable, and a sudden, irreversible urge to lead a more spontaneous existence.”

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