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Why Is Live Music So Good? Let’s Talk It Over

Paul McCartney 06-14-13.jpg
Paul McCartney at Bonnaroo 06-14-13

Do you love live music? This episode is for you! After taking in a number of shows after a bit of a lull, I was energized, engaged, and excited. It got me thinking about telling the story of not only those concert experiences, but also about the broader subject of live music. So let us talk, shall we? I will start, and then you can respond, and perhaps we can compare notes in a future episode.

Southern Songs and Stories has been running for over five years as a podcast, and existed as a video documentary series before that. You probably know that the main mode for the show remains a series of in-depth interviews with music artists and media professionals, along with commentary from yours truly, and music to round it all out. But every once in a while we branch out with different approaches -- there are episodes on the dark history of the Shelton Laurel Massacre, episodes giving an overview of Southern music and culture going back to their inception, and episodes which take on themes like artists’ side hustles, and imagining what would make the ways of the world better for music. This episode is also a tangent, not focusing on one artist or group but touching on the common theme of live music so often featured here.

This episode is divided into three chapters, with each chapter throwing out a question to guide the narrative and literally ask you that question. First up: what was your first live music experience? This is such a Rorschach test of a question, such a good icebreaker anytime you are around even the most casual of music fans.

What was your latest concert experience? I bet you have been out to a show or two since that awful year or two that no one could do much except watch live streams of shows.

Finally, what was your favorite live music experience? I would love to hear your answers, and feel free to tag Southern Songs and Stories on social media with your memories or reply to the posts that we make about this, or even email me at joek@wncw.org. I would love to start an ongoing conversation about this experience which makes us feel more free, more happy and more alive than just about anything.

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Joe Kendrick grew up far off in the woods at in rural Stanfield, NC, where he acquired his first Sony Walkman, listened to both AM and FM radio from Charlotte, went to Nascar races at Charlotte Motor Speedway, attended a small Baptist church, read Rolling Stone, subscribed to cassette clubs, and played one very forgettable season of high school football. From there, Joe studied Journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was able to fulfill his dream of being a disc jockey at WXYC. He volunteered at WNCW soon after graduation.