DJ Mike Show #200 – 3/20/2021: Interviews with Keith Kenny, and Marvin Etzioni and Willie Aron of Thee Holy Brothers!

DJ Mike Lidskin spent ten years at a National Public Radio station in Chicago, returned to California in 1997 and created Twirl Radio, and now hosts 30 hours of programming a month at Woody Radio. His two shows, “The Show With No Name” and “The Saturday Thing”, feature the finest independent music and artists from the rock era. Mike’s on a mission to not “just spin rock music, but to educate listeners about this vital art form.” Indeed, he doesn’t just announce the songs, but gives histories about some of the artists, the albums, and the songs themselves.

You can catch the DJ Mike Shows live on Tuesday nights at 8:00 p.m. PST and Saturdays at 10:00 a.m. PST at Woody Radio,

Artist | Track | Album
Robyn Hitchcock | Mexican God | Jewels for Sophia
Walker Brigade | DIsEASE | Therapy Animal
Farrington | A Day At The Beach | Saturday In Nowhereland
Al Green | I’m Still in Love With You | I’m Still in Love With You
Wade Johnson | When Will It End | When Will It End
Heiskell | Just Can’t Say | Arriving
Rob One | Flames | African
Sex 66 | Pennies | Grew Up Down

Keith Kenny interview
Keith Kenny | Move Along | Lifetime Ago Motel
Keith Kenny | Broken Misery | Lifetime Ago Motel
Keith Kenny | Burr’s Roach Jam | Lifetime Ago Motel

Lannie Flowers | Give Me a Chance | New Songs Old Stories
Lisa Mychols | I Go Wild | Single release
George Harrison | What Is Life | All Things Must Pass
Kat Jones | Losing | We Are Warm, Young, Blood
D.F.E. | Yellow River | Big Stir single release
The Clash | Somebody Got Murdered | Sandinista! Disc 1
Yung Wu | Shore Leave | Shore Leave
Natalie Cortez & the Ultra Violets | She’s Better | Stupid Fresh Or Stupid Bad
R.E.M. | Pilgrimage | Murmur (Deluxe Edition) (Disc 1)
Brandi Ediss | Stupid Boyfriend | Bees and Bees and Bees
The Bobbleheads | Joey | Myths And Fables
Librarians With Hickeys | Looking For Home | Long Overdue
Sunshine Boys | Infinity Girl | Work and Love

Thee Holy Brothers interview
Thee Holy Brothers | My Name Is Sparkle | My Name Is Sparkle
Thee Holy Brothers | Elvis In Jerusalem | My Name Is Sparkle
Thee Holy Brothers | The End Of Suffering | My Name Is Sparkle

Karim Fanous | Thin Bits | Stir Crazy
The Corner Laughers | For The Sake Of The Cat | Ultraviolet Garden
Anton Barbeau | Flying Spider | Magic Act
Bill Lloyd | I’ll Take It From Here | Don’t Kill The Messenger
Blake Jones & The Trike Shop | I Roped The Moon Out Of The Sky | Everybody’s Unplugged Except Martin
Tamar Berk | red ball | the restless dreams of youth
Jim Basnight | Best Lover In The World | Not Changing
Rachel Taylor Brown | Mt. Athos | Falimy
Don Hawkins | Observation Blind | Observation Blind
Sean O’Brien and His Dirty Hands | Mistakes | Mistakes
Josh Caterer | Goodnight My Someone | The Hideout Sessions
Felsen | Felsen’s Gonna Save You | Breaking Up With Loneliness
Frank Black | St. Francis Dam Disaster | Dog In The Sand

Epic. That’s the only way to describe the interview doubleheader in this show. Great conversations with great artists. On this show, I got to meet both “band of one” Keith Kenny, and “dynamic duo” Marvin Etzioni and Willie Aron, known as Thee Holy Brothers. I needed to go big, to celebrate my 200th show here at Woody Radio, and thanks to these fine fellas, I think we achieved it.

Keith Kenny is a New Jersey-based singer-songwriter, who’s in high demand for his guitar work. He’s been a musical road warrior, having traveled around the globe and the country several times, in support of such artists as Dean Ween and many others, and doing a residency at the House of Blues in Las Vegas. His playing techniques have enabled him to sound like a full band, while retaining his solo artist status. In the interview, you’ll hear about how he does it, plus the importance of “The Big Red Suitcase”. (Spoiler alert: he doesn’t travel as light as you might think.) He also plays with bands, which perhaps frees him up to be just a single band member (albeit a very good one), and not the whole band.

On tour with Dean Ween as his marriage was ending, a batch of songs started developing, which became his new album “Lifetime Ago Motel”. There are a lot of personal experiences reflected in these songs, but the clever lyrics and often upbeat melodies keep it from being a maudlin affair. A lot of it is fun, and some of it is straight up cathartic. The sound ranges from folky to harder rock, almost industrial, but very rockin’. It was a bit difficult for Keith to work through these personal songs. Everything was still raw. But he couldn’t not do it–he needed to make this record. And now, he needs to get it out into the world before he can really move along. He said that he’s emerged through this process a different person, scarred but stronger. The album is excellent, and you would do well to get yourself a copy

Next up, I got to meet Thee Holy Brothers, Marvin Etzioni and Willie Aron. These guys are lifelong friends, who met at a record store, bonding over a certain live rock album that was recorded in 1970 at Leeds University (my favorite live album, by the way). If you’ve listened to music over the past few decades, you’ve probably heard Marvin’s and Willie’s work. Marvin was in Lone Justice, and has produced, written songs for, or recorded with countless other artists, such as Richard Thompson, John Doe, Maria McKee solo, Steve Earle, Counting Crows, etc. The list goes on. Willie Aron’s credits go pretty wide and deep too, as a film score composer, a kid’s music artist, and playing with the likes of Susanna Hoffs, Michael Penn, Rickie Lee Jones, and so many more.

So these guys have the pedigree. But they’re pretty modest about all that. Right now, the focus is on their first project together, the concept album “My Name Is Sparkle”. It’s pretty darn wonderful, on many levels. Without giving away too much, the lead character, Sparkle, is on a spiritual quest. But the thing is, don’t let the word “spiritual” mess you up–this is actually a fun album, and a really easy listen. There’s some deep messages buried in there, but much of the sound is lighthearted and playful. A bit rockin’, a bit jazzy, a bit funky. It’s a pleasure to listen to.

What was also a pleasure was chatting with Marvin and Willie. Their respect and admiration for each other shines through–their collaboration was absolutely ideal–almost telepathic. Marvin had the vision and wrote the songs. Willie is no slouch in the songwriting department, but for this project, he said “Marvin speaks for me”. Marvin said that “I write the songs, but Willie is quality control”. The interview was, just like the album, lighthearted and playful, and you’ve really got to hear it. There are some great stories there. And do check out Thee Holy Brothers:


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