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Playlist: just listening

Compiled By: Arna Zucker

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Beyond a Song (Series)

Produced by ISOAS Media

Most recent piece in this series:

Beyond a Song: Kim Lenz (Part 2)

From ISOAS Media | Part of the Beyond a Song series | 01:00:00

Lenz_1_240x240_small KIM LENZ (PART 2): PUBLISHED ON PRX  1 / 11 / 2018 - BEYOND A SONG originates in BLOOMINGTON, INDIANA and is sponsored by: THE BLUEBIRD NIGHTCLUBAIRTIME RECORDING STUDIO ,  and  VISIT BLOOMINGTON.COM

Host Rich Reardin talks with Los Angeles singer/songwriter and Rockabilly queen, Kim Lenz about her life and music.

With a mom who rode in rodeo and a dad who was a fan of Wolfman Jack, rockabilly queen Kim Lenz learned about good music early on during her youth in southern California. She grew up listening to the recordings of such artists as Janis Martin, Wanda Jackson, Faron Young, and Johnny Horton. During her childhood she played the piano, and she started playing the guitar during her teen years. For a time when she lived in Los Angeles, her workplace's radio only picked up the music of the big band era, which led her to become acquainted with many of the old standards. At one time, Lenz majored in psychology while she attended the University of North Texas. Before she earned her degree, she hooked up with a few musicians who wanted to form a band. Lenz joined in, and the half a dozen singers and musicians called themselves Rocket, Rocket. Before a year had passed, however, the group disbanded. In 1994, she settled in Dallas, where two years later she pulled together a band of her own, the Jaguars. Lenz's backing band consists of Tom Umberger on lead guitar, Shawn Supra on bass fiddle, and Scotty Tecce on drums.

Up to My Old Tricks Again In 1996, Lenz and the Jaguars put out an EP on the label Wormtone, which is based in Colorado. The Dallas Observer named the rockabilly redhead Best Female Vocalist the following year. Hightone's Larry Sloven heard the EP and was so taken by Lenz's sound that he offered her a recording contract with Hightone's subsidiary, HMG. The label issued the band's eponymous album in 1998. Of the recording's 14 tracks, Lenz penned more than half. Also featured on the album were covers of "Ten Cats Down," originally recorded by the Miller Sisters, and "The Swing," recorded previously by Johnny Carroll. The release featured Wally Hersom, the bassist for Big Sandy & His Fly-Rite Boys, in the producer's chair in an effort to get that rockabilly sound just right. He collects vintage recording apparatus, and through that type of equipment he helped Lenz and her Jaguars achieve the desired sound. The following year, Lenz released The One & Only. Lenz's second release for Hightone; the compilation album Up to My Old Tricks Again, was released in 2005. In 2009, Lenz returned with the studio album It's All True.

Follow Me After the release of It's All True, Lenz found out that she had been adopted. The news came as a shock and subsequently, she entered a period of deep self-reflection. Also around this time, Lenz suffered another blow with the death of longtime friend and bandmate, guitarist Nick Curran, from cancer. It was out of this period of turmoil however, that Lenz developed the music for her next album, 2013's Follow Me. Featuring production from journeyman roots music pianist Carl Sonny Leyland, Follow Me showcased Lenz' newfound strength and swaggering rockabilly attitude.

Musical selections include: Room, Bogeyman, Zombie For Your Love, Bury Me Deep, Pine Me, Percolate, Hourglass, If You Don't Like My Peaches (Don't Shake My Tree)
For more information, visit BEYOND A SONG.COM

The Emotion Roadmap: Take the Wheel & Control How You Feel (Series)

Produced by Chuck Wolfe

Most recent piece in this series:

Use The Emotion Roadmap to Really have a "Happy" New Year

From Chuck Wolfe | Part of the The Emotion Roadmap: Take the Wheel & Control How You Feel series | 51:51

Balancing_rock_small I talk about strategy to use tax revenues from drug  sales to be put into social and emotional learning in Connecticut schools. Research shows young people with high emotional intelligence have enhanced self confidence, better study skills, are more responsible students, and engage in less risky behaviors involving drugs, cigarettes, and alcohol. If we are truly concerned with more young people using marijuana due to changing laws then let's use these tax dollars to promote well being in all children in schools so that these same children have much less interest in getting high.

A Way with Words (Series)

Produced by A Way with Words

Most recent piece in this series:

Pig Latin (#1463)

From A Way with Words | Part of the A Way with Words series | 54:00

Babyshower_small In a futile situation, English speakers might say that we're spinning our wheels. The French have a phrase for the same situation that translates as to pedal in sauerkraut. The Illustrated Book of Sayings collects similarly colorful idioms in other languages. There's a Turkish expression that literally translates as Grapes darken by looking at each other, and means that we're influenced by the company we keep. In Latvian, there's an expression that means  "to prevariate," but literally it translates as "to blow little ducks."

An Austin, Texas, listener says he and his buddies are throwing a baby shower for a dad-to-be, but they're wondering what to call a baby shower thrown for the father. A man shower? A dadchelor party?

We go back like carseats is a slang expression that means "We've been friends for a long time."

The political terms liberal and libertarian may look similar, but they have very different meanings. Both stem from Latin liber, "free," but the word liberal entered English hundreds of years before libertarian.

Half-filled pots splash more is the literal translation a Hindi expression suggesting that those who bluster the most, least deserve to. Another Hindi idiom translates literally as Who saw a peacock dance in the woods? In other words, even something worthy requires publicity if it's going to be acknowledged.

Quiz Guy John Chaneski has a puzzle of Container Clues, in which one word is inserted whole into another to create a new word. For example, if the definition is "kind of potatoes," and the clue is "She is in mad," what kind of potatoes are we talking about?

A Carmel, Indiana, teacher is puzzled to hear younger colleagues pronounce the words kitten and mitten as KIT-un and MIT-un, with a noticeable break between the syllables. Linguist David Eddington of Brigham Young University reports that this phenomenon, called glottalization, is a growing feature of American dialect, mainly among young women in their 20's and 30's, particularly in the western United States.  

A New York City caller wonders why we refer to clothing as duds. The term dates back to the 1300's, when the word dudde referred to a cloak or mantle of coarse cloth. Over time, it came to refer to shabby clothing, and eventually acquired a more neutral meaning of simply "clothes." The earlier sense of "ragged" or "inferior" may also be reflected in the term dud, denoting something that fails to function.

For English speakers of a certain age, Film at 11 is a slang phrase means "You'll hear the details later." It's a reference to the days before 24-hour cable news, when newscasters would read headlines during the day promoting the 11 p.m. broadcast, when viewers would get the whole story, including video.

The exhortation Grab a root and growl is a way of telling someone to buck up and do what must be done. The sense of grabbing and growling here suggests the kind of tenacity you might see in a terrier sinking his teeth into something and refusing to let go. This phrase is at least 100 years old. A much more rare variation is grab, root, and growl. Both expressions are reminiscent of a similar exhortation, root, hog, or die.

Is the term expat racist? Journalist Laura Secorun argues that the word expat implies a value judgment, suggesting that Westerners who move to another country are adventurous, while the term immigrant suggests someone who likely moved out of necessity or may be a burden to society in their adopted country.

In much of the United States, the phrase I'll be there directly means "I'm on my way right now." But particularly in parts of the South, I'll be there directly simply means "I'll be there after a while." As a Marquette, Michigan, listener points out, this discrepancy can cause lots of confusion!

Why do so many people begin their sentences with the word So? In linguistics, this is called sentence-initial so. The word So at the start a sentence can serve a variety of functions.

Ix-nay on the ocolate-chay in the upboard-cay is how you'd say Nix on the chocolate in the cupboard in Pig Latin. English speakers have a long history of inserting syllables or rearranging syllables in a word to keep outsiders from understanding. The pig in Pig Latin may just refer to the idea of pig as an inferior, unclean animal.

This episode was hosted by Martha Barnette and Grant Barrett and produced by Stefanie Levine.