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    Tuesday, January 30, 2007

    Lee Hazelwood is ready to leave this Earth...

    From the Sunday New York Times:

    January 28, 2007

    One Last Walk for the Man Behind ‘These Boots’

    LEE HAZLEWOOD is ready to die. Suffering excruciating pain from renal cancer, Mr. Hazlewood, the reclusive singer, songwriter and producer doesn’t have much time left, maybe a year if he’s lucky. So he has been preparing for what he calls his impending “dirt nap.”

    He has decided he wants to be cremated, and to have his ashes strewn on a Swedish island where he composed some of his favorite songs. He has chosen his epitaph: “Didn’t he ramble,” referring to his loner-drifter nature. He has already given away most of his gold and platinum records, which he earned making hits for Duane Eddy, Dean Martin and Nancy Sinatra, including “These Boots Are Made for Walkin’,” one of the most famous pop songs of all time. He has released his swan song, the quirky album “Cake or Death,” which hit stores last week. And he married his longtime girlfriend, Jeane Kelley, in a drive-through ceremony in Las Vegas.

    “It was like going to McDonald’s,” Mr. Hazlewood said of their November wedding, sitting in his living room in a small, tidy house. “You stay in the car and go up to the window. The preacher was a Frenchman. Afterwards my granddaughter threw rose petals on the hood.”

    Mrs. Hazlewood, smiling, said: “He just wanted to make me a legal woman. After 15 years together.”

    Mr. Hazlewood, who was married twice before, kept cracking dark jokes about his health (“Dying really drives your price up”), though he stressed that being “ready to go doesn’t mean you’re through with your life.” He dotes on his grandchildren and great-grandchildren, whose pictures adorn a wall in the TV room, next to a huge portrait of himself, wearing shades. But, he said: “I’m 77. I’ve been around long enough now. I’ve lived a pretty interesting life — not too much sadness, a lot of happiness, lots of fun. And I didn’t do much of anything I didn’t want to do.”

    True, he is one of the more iconoclastic figures of 20th-century pop, a cantankerous, hard-living innovator who walked away from fame and fortune whenever he felt like it. One of the major hitmakers of the ’50s and ’60s, he helped Duane Eddy shape twang-rock, transformed Nancy Sinatra into a megastar and, on his LHI label, released what is widely considered the first country-rock record, by Gram Parsons’s International Submarine Band. And he made a series of beautifully oddball solo albums that were mostly unheard in America, until a member of Sonic Youth reissued them in the ’90s.

    Today Mr. Hazlewood is sadly unsung, which is partly his own fault. He spent decades trying to disappear, flitting between Europe and the United States — particularly those states with no personal income tax. “I’m kind of a bum,” he said.

    His quirky genius stems from a desire to make sounds he never heard before; he summed it up as “not normal” music. In the ’50s he was inspired to stick a microphone and an amp in a grain elevator, to capture the spooky reverb effect heard on Mr. Eddy’s classics. Some conspiracy theorists think he inspired Phil Spector’s “wall of sound” (the two men briefly worked together), or that Mr. Spector even stole the production technique from him.

    “Phil was not influenced by me at all,” Mr. Hazlewood said emphatically. “His records were just genius, and if you think I would have come up with the wall of sound and given it to Phil Spector, you’re out of your mind.”

    Mr. Hazlewood’s own music grew increasingly experimental over the years. Born in the tiny town of Mannford, Okla., he favors vaguely country-western pop with sweet melodies and symphonic orchestration, sung in a stunning baritone as deep and sticky as a tar pit. “I think his voice has the kind of stature that Johnny Cash’s had,” Beck said. “It has a gravity that allows him to be sincere and tongue-in-cheek at the same time. It’s that immense voice of experience, not expecting any kindness from humanity other than a spare cigarette.”

    Mr. Hazlewood’s wry tales feature boozers and misfits, stooges and undertakers, summer wine and dames on death row. There are O. Henry endings, cheesy voice-overs and concept albums about Loserville (“Trouble Is a Lonesome Town,” 1963) and bad breakups (“Requiem for an Almost Lady,” 1971). Today his sound is often called cowboy psychedelia, best represented by the trippy “Some Velvet Morning.” But it’s a genre of one: no one else has ever sounded quite like him.

    He had a knack for mainstream pop too. Dean Martin interpreted his jaunty wandering-man lark “Houston,” a huge hit in the mid-’60s. They bonded over a love of scotch: Mr. Martin was a J&B man, Mr. Hazlewood drank Chivas Regal. “Here’s Dean Martin drinking J&B and I’m drinking something which is twice as much money and twice as good,” he said, shaking his head with mild disgust. “I didn’t drink to get drunk. I drank as a reward, and I only drank the good stuff.”

    Soon Frank Sinatra wanted him to fix the floundering career of his daughter Nancy. Despite a decade-plus age difference, Mr. Hazlewood and Ms. Sinatra hit it off; they remain close friends. He thought that she was too cutesy, that she needed to seem more like truck-driver-dating jailbait. “He was part Henry Higgins and part Sigmund Freud,” Ms. Sinatra said by telephone. “He was far from the country bumpkin people considered him at the time. I had a horrible crush on him, but he was married then.”

    Romance rumors swirled, but they never had an affair, Mr. Hazlewood said, “and now we’re old enough to tell you if we did.”

    When he played her “These Boots Are Made for Walkin’,” a song he’d written in 1963, she knew it could be huge as soon as she heard the descending, quarter-tone bass line. By 1966 it was a No. 1 hit, and she was known as a sassy go-go-boot-wearing sexpot who doesn’t let any man push her around. She and Mr. Hazlewood recorded a long string of chart-hogging duets — “Sundown, Sundown,” “Jackson” — transforming a short 30-something with a bushy mustache into an unlikely pop star. “He called us the beauty and the beast,” Ms. Sinatra said.

    She hated being alone, so they shared a dressing room during tours. The problem was, Mr. Hazlewood walked around naked, which was fine with her but didn’t sit well with visiting journalists. She begged him to put on some underwear.

    “In those days I didn’t wear shorts, ever,” Mr. Hazlewood recalled. “Showing my butt is not any big thing with me, never has been.”

    Ms. Sinatra said: “Nature boy. He was proud of his assets.”

    Luckily her father didn’t mind. “We got along great,” Mr. Hazlewood said. “Frank thought I was about two-thirds funny, and I thought he was about 90 percent clever. He had names for everyone. He called me Country. But I could never get used to hearing someone call Frank Sinatra Daddy.” The two men worked together on “This Town” and “Somethin’ Stupid,” a hit duet with Nancy.

    In 1969 Mr. Hazlewood was asked to work his magic on the bombshell actress-singer Ann-Margret. They posed naked for the artwork of the album “The Cowboy & the Lady.” Well, almost: she’s wearing a strategically placed umbrella, and he’s wearing a gun.

    “We were extremely cold,” Ann-Margret said in a telephone interview, “but we had such fun. He had that darling, aw-shucks demeanor, but he was sharp — and a bad, bad boy.” (No affair, Mr. Hazlewood said: she was married.)

    Then, at the height of his success, Mr. Hazlewood shocked everyone in 1970 by suddenly moving to Sweden, where he lived for much of the following decade. He recorded some of his finest solo work there (like the gorgeous “Cowboy in Sweden”) but his career never regained momentum.

    “It was crazy,” Ms. Sinatra said. “And he really left me in the lurch. He kept shooting himself in the foot all the time, and I never knew why. He was always his own worst enemy.”

    MR. HAZLEWOOD could barely sleep the night before his interview, wracked with organ-deep aches that even “doping up” didn’t ease. He was told he had cancer about a year and a half ago, and has since lost a kidney. The operation left him with a large, unsightly bump on his side. “If you’re going to die of cancer, you might as well have a hump,” he said.

    Nonetheless he looked and sounded surprisingly good, dressed like a young rocker in baggy black pants, tinted shades and a baseball cap with an embroidered dragon. He seemed much younger than 77, given his sarcastic asides and tales of Viking skeletons and fights at Hollywood restaurants. Far from prickly, he was charismatic and self-deprecating, asking his wife to finish some stories because “she tells ’em much better.”

    He doesn’t listen to much music anymore, though he said he loved Beck “before I even knew that he was a fan.” Beck was turned on to his music by Steve Shelley of Sonic Youth, who gave him a tape in the early ’90s. Meanwhile rockers like Pulp’s Jarvis Cocker were saluting his music as forgotten art, not kitsch. A few years later Mr. Shelley got permission to reissue some of Mr. Hazlewood’s out-of-print albums on Smells Like Records, his indie label; they sell about 5,000 to 10,000 copies each per year, according to the label.

    “This all surprised the hell out of me,” Mr. Hazlewood recalled. In 1999 he released a comeback record with a self-sabotaging title: “Farmisht, Flatulence, Origami, ARF!!! and Me.”

    “I don’t know if I was born to be in this business or not,” he said.

    He originally wanted to be a doctor. He was raised “like a Gypsy,” as his father was an oil wildcatter and the family followed him around Arkansas, Kansas and Texas, settling in Port Neches, Tex., during Mr. Hazlewood’s high school years. One grandfather was a judge, married to a teacher who was half American Indian; the other was a rancher who taught him how to ride horses and herd cows.

    “I had the happiest childhood on record,” Mr. Hazlewood said. “People tell me I’d have been a much better songwriter if I had a sad one.”

    Mr. Hazlewood studied medicine, but left school to serve in the Korean War. Later a stint at broadcasting school led to a songwriting hobby and a radio D.J. gig in Arizona. By the mid-’50s he was championing an unknown guitar virtuoso named Duane Eddy.

    Mr. Eddy appears on “Cake or Death,” reinterpreting the original, pre-Nancy version of “These Boots,” which has a ghostlier melody few have heard before. An eccentric collection of new songs, covers and reworkings of Hazlewood classics, the album is far from a soft-focus, navel-gazing meditation on death. Mr. Hazlewood is going out the way he lived, fearless and cranky: he slams the Iraq war on “Baghdad Nights,” mocks gated-community types in “White People Thing” and proudly salutes his liberal beliefs — “I never did vote Republican” — in the bluesy “Anthem.” “Fred Freud” imagines Sigmund Freud’s down-home American brother and features Mr. Hazlewood’s favorite lyric: “No kisses or posies can kill your neuroses.”

    But at the end he suddenly grabs for the heart: the melancholy, string-driven ballad “T.O.M. (The Old Man)” presents a dying singer who accepts that the world will be just as beautiful without him. He wrote it for his new wife, the only woman he said he was ever in “real love” with. A former military police officer, she is no-nonsense and extremely kind. “I kept waiting for love to get boring, and it never did,” he said.

    In the song he wonders “what forever will be like.” And he’s still not sure. “I think that any part of you that’s good or interesting might go back to this collective something that started it all off,” he said. “And that’s as deep of an explanation as I can give you.”

    Suddenly he shouted out to Mark Hazlewood, his son: “Are you up there eavesdropping? Well, you should be, because you’re going to have to do this for me when I’m dead.”

    Everyone started laughing. Black humor is the family’s coping mechanism. “We all joke about my death in this house,” Mr. Hazlewood said. “Even the grandkids.”

    But later, as Mrs. Hazlewood drove a reporter to a taxi stand at a nearby casino, she confessed: “This is so hard on all of us. I really don’t want to lose him. I can’t even imagine living without him.”

    “I’ve been thinking of getting a glass vial of his blood,” she added. “So I can clone him when the time and technology is right.” One day 21st-century pop could get a lot stranger.

    Amanda Kaletsky Performs "December" Live at the Sellersville Theater, January 26, 2007

    Recent guest on "The Time Machine", singer-songwriter Amanda Kaletsky, not only charmed our entire staff but was caught on tape four nights ago.

    Amanda has been a wonderful addition to our playlists since her debut EP. This past December, Amanda released her second EP, "Between You & Me".

    Listen to Amanda Kaletsky's music at her official website -

    Thursday, January 25, 2007

    80'S Musical Film "Teen Witch" Casts Spell

    Above photo shows Sara Niemietz with original "Teen Witch" actress Robin Lively.

    The 1989 film musical "Teen Witch " has been packing them in at midnight movies from New York to Seattle rivaling the popular "Rocky Horror Picture Show" and there are millions of “Teen Witch” fans worldwide.

    The film which stars Robin Lively, Zelda Rubinstein, Dick Sargent, Joshua Miller, Noah Blake and Shelly Berman has new life due to it's first time release on DVD from MGM/Sony.

    "We were at the Bridge Cinema in San Francisco and there were lines around the block", said Larry Weir, the films songwriter/composer who also hit #1 that same year producing Michael Damian's "Rock On" (A&M/Cypress).

    The stars from the original film were in attendance at all of the showings for a Q&A prior to the screenings that included Weir and the film's producer Alana Lambros (Killer Clowns From Outer Space / Brenda Star). "There is such a demand for the soundtrack that was never released that we are re-recording it with newer artists, and we are also in pre-production for Teen Witch / The Musical, which we will take to Broadway in 2007," adds Weir.

    Regardless of how trends move this year, here is one single that will “get the phones ringing”. The track “Finest Hour” which marks the debut for recording artists Sara Niemietz & Blake Ewing, is something that fans of the 80’s cult favorite “Teen Witch” have been waiting for.

    Since the soundtrack was never released, you can bet that fans will go “through the roof” once they hear this song on their favorite radio station.
    This also marks the debut release for Caption Records, a long overdue venture for brothers Larry Weir, Michael Damian & Tom Weir.

    Michael Damian, long known for his work on the Young & The Restless is now directing feature films, and his current “Moondance Alexander” starring Kay Penabaker, Don Johnson, Lori Loughlin & Sasha Cohen will hit theatres this summer. Larry Weir runs the highly successful Heartland Entertainment Group and is the editor of New Music Weekly. Tom Weir, engineer and mixer, who became a recent Grammy winner, runs the highly successful Studio City Sound that has played host to everyone from No Doubt to Natasha Bedingfield.
    This is a team of “first rate” producers, and they have spared no expense at making a great single. The full-length CD album will be released in February, and will feature 14 tracks including three new songs added for the musical rendition of this new production.

    The players on “Finest Hour” are being called the “new wrecking crew”. They include drummer Josh Freeze who has been on the road as Sting’s drummer as of late. Guitarist Tim Pierce who has worked with Avril Lavigne, Michelle Branch & Jewel among others, provided his best work to date on both acoustic and electric guitars. Lance Morrison who helped put Alanis Morissette’s “Jagged Little Pill” on the map played bass on the track while taking a weekend off from the Eagles tour. Arranger and trombonist Nick Lane who has done work with just about everyone from the Pussycat Dolls, to Chicago, put together a major horn section that includes the best veteran players on the planet. There is a live string section on “Finest Hour” conducted and arranged by Japanese conductor Heday Ikuno featuring some of the industries “finest”. Bernadette Barlow who has been the featured voice on the music for Survivor (CBS) & who has toured in support of Sarah McLaughlin & Melissa Etheridge, puts her unique and powerful background vocals at work here.

    “Finest Hour” comes from “Teen Witch The Musical”, a rock musical rendition of the 80’s cult film “Teen Witch” that is Broadway bound in 2007! The single is being serviced to multi-formats that include AC Mainstream, Hot AC, CHR & Triple A radio.
    Radio programmers are already buzzing about the single.

    Below photograph is Blake Ewing and Sara Niemetz during rehearsal last year.

    Sara Niemietz and Blake Ewing's duet release of Finest Hour [4:03] from "Teen Witch - The Musical" is an incredible performance that every radio programmer should be adding to their 2007 playlists! It's already been getting heavy spins all this month on "The Time Machine".

    Sunday, January 21, 2007

    Courtney Jaye Settles Into Nashville

    Singer-songwriter Courtney Jaye drops by in a content mood:

    My new home, the coolest place on the planet.


    I am officially in love with this city. I have been here now for almost three weeks, have written 12 new songs, met some great people and have seen some really fantastic live music...there is such a vibe and a community of artists here that I have been so blessed with knowing and being a part of, and it has been so inspiring...I got settled into my adorable new home and started working immediately...I am writing all kinds of songs as well...big country/pop songs for other artists to sing, old timey traditional country songs, and as an artist I am continuing to hone in on writing Hawaiian influenced tropical alt-country songs...wrote a Hawaiian lullaby the other day that could be sung to a baby before sleep, or could be in a David Lynch movie...not sure which one it would be better for:) It is innocent yet a little dark...I was inspired by my friend Tom Fruend and Brett Dennens children's song called "Throw A Party In The Yard" to hang and see them play together last Sunday night at 3rd and Lindsley and it was so much fun...if you all do not know who these artists are, I highly recommend that you find them on myspace(see my top 8) far as writing for others, which is a new thing for me, the nice thing about it is that I get to get out of my self and into the perspective of another a certain point, you can only say that you have been heartbroken by a cuban man so many times in one week, so it is nice to live through another person's experience which may or may not be a little more positive:)

    I am listening to alot of Roy Orbison, Martin Denny, Lyle ritz, Jimmy Buffett, and artists by the name of Rodrigo Y Gabriella...they are a duo that my friend Charlie turned me onto and they are incredible!!! Got to see Matt Costa and G. Love last week, Wax Fang on Friday, and an amazing bluegrass band by the name of "The Steel Drivers" last night at the Station Inn...what a show!!! I am pretty much in musical heaven...

    I am also looking forward to my Valentine's Day gig at the Bluebird Cafe, and my birthday is the following day, so I have a feeling we will be celebrating that night at the show;)

    I also want to say thanks so much to all of YOU, for listening to my music and continuing to support me on my journey...I am really excited about this year:)

    Love and more love,

    Posted by Courtney Jaye

    The Time Machine

    Sunday, January 21, 2007 at 10:05 AM

    Glad to hear that you're having so much fun and getting alot accomplished! Yay for Nashville!

    I caught Matt Costa last week too! He performed here in Lahaina and must have been just a few days from the show that you saw. We've been playing "Sweet Rose" on the air quite a bit. It was an amazing performance listening to his band really rock it up in the vein of Old 97's. Got to talk with him after the show. Really nice guy.

    Ultimate Jimmy Buffett song - "If The Phone Doesn't Ring, It's Me".

    Continue to soak in that musical Nashville vibe!

    Courtney's music has had a home on our playlists and in our hearts since her debut release. Be sure to pick up a copy of her first album, "Traveling Light" and keep an eye peeled out for CJ's upcoming release "Bamboo Moon". Sample "Are You With Me?", available at iTunes, you can also get a sampling of what she's been up to lately (including both "Til It Bleeds" and "The Sweetest Tune" which are getting some positive response from our radio listeners on the studio lines) at her website and also Courtney Jaye's MySpace Music Profile

    Thursday, January 11, 2007

    Lacey-Lee Evin and "Hawaii"

    Lacey-Lee Evin has a super cool song titled "Hawaii" which is a no brainer for our playlists considering that we are broadcasting from Maui. Lacey is a member of the band Lillix who have been on our playlists since their debut release. That first album was a great rockin' album meant to be played at high volume. Lillix has now unleashed their sophomore album "Inside The Hollow" after almost four years and it was worth the wait!

    The Time Machine was very pleased that Lacey let us play her demo on the Hawaiian airwaves in addition to our online broadcast "The Best and The Worst of The Time Machine" which can also be heard on TiVo's Live365 radio broadcasts. Just in case you are nowhere near us and can't reach our broadcast, Lacey has her demo of "Hawaii" on her MySpace Music Profile.

    Lacey-Lee Evin at MySpace Music

    Official Website for Lillix

    Happy New Year from Rocker Brian Ray

    The Time Machine was honored to have Brian Ray as a guest artist last week. It was a great way to bring in the new year with this rocking singer-songwriter. Brian shares his ringing in of the new year.

    All good things to my dear friends in 2007!

    My New Years Eve....

    It was all about being invited to Mike Campbell's [guitarist for Tom Petty] house by him for Mike and Marci's NY party.. So, there I was hanging with some of the Heartbreakers and it's 11:50. I had heard that Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers played a set there last year.. but so far, no TP...

    THEN, he walks in... Tom Petty.. and I notice the whole band is there now.. so, we all toast in the new year and I thought maybe they were just gonna hang and party.. so cool!! Then I see Mike motion the bass player and drummer to the living room, where they have a set up for a band.

    So I walk into the next room.. I'm standing there talking to a woman and Tom walks by me.... stops, turns and says, "hi I'm Tom... I just wanted to introduce myself to you and tell I you I'm a big fan.. I've watched your work and you're a great player"... I'm freakin! So, I say "Man, I've been listening to you for a long time.. I got into this thing where I put on your new CD every morning... If it were made of vinyl, I would have worn that sucker out!!" He let out a big laugh... then he walks straight over, puts on a guitar and they played for 1 1/2 hrs straight! SO ****'in cool!!

    They played all the songs that influenced them, not the hits.. All Mike's son's friends crowded and screamed, danced and fell over as I watched from the big winding stairwell in his giant living room. He was telling the kids to back up or he couldn't keep playin'.. just like they did at Woodstock! It was heaven.

    Then after, Mike asked me back into his studio to show me his new guitars.. As we're talking, Tom Petty comes in and says it all again!! Wow.. what a great way to bring in the NY! I'm still all glowing from it.

    You know, it's really surprising to me whenever a star tells me he's been watching me and is a fan of my playing/writing. I guess I don't go around thinking about my exposure to the world, being in this cool band with Paul McCartney. I never consider that all the other great artists look to him just as I did, and that they all notice me too.. it feels really good to be considered a peer.. It's such a cool side benefit to the music... just amazing.. I'll never forget it.

    All the best to you in 2007.
    May all of your dreams come true.


    Brian's music has had a home on our playlists with his debut release for the last year and his song "Vinyl" was one of our most played songs of 2006! Be sure to pick up a copy of his album, "Mondo Magneto" and keep an eye out for him touring with Paul McCartney this year too! You can get a sampling of what he's been up to lately at his website

    Monday, January 01, 2007

    The Time Machine's Most Played Albums Of 2006

    It's the first day of 2007 and we decided to look back at our most played albums on the air for 2006. Everyone argued over a top ten or twenty list because there were so many choices. We decided that instead of bickering over different music choices (and trust us...this is what we love to do...bicker about movies and music), we would present to you our most played albums on the air last year. This way there was no wiggle room for critical favorites. The funny part was that after the list was completed, everyone gathered around, smiled and agreed that these albums did fill our hearts and souls musically and that's all that matters in the end.

    A large number of spins for thirty albums in no particular ranking outside of the first choice.

    Let's kick it off with the most played album hands down over any other this past year on "The Time Machine"...

    - Susanna Hoffs and Matthew Sweet

    - Marla Sokoloff

    - Brian Ray

    - Marty Rudnick

    - Courtney Jaye

    - Shine

    - Dave Stephens

    WHO I AM
    - Alice Peacock

    - Kristin Hoffmann

    - L.E.O.

    - Roger Manning, Jr.

    - Rhett Miller

    - Lindsey Buckingham

    - Jenny Lewis with The Watson Twins

    - Paul Simon

    - Emmylou Harris and Mark Knopfler

    - Rosanne Cash

    - Alternativa

    - Kelly Harper

    - Shawn Amos

    - Dixie Chicks

    - K.T. Tunstall

    - Butch Walker and the Let's-Go-Out-Tonites!

    - The Wreckers

    - Brian Setzer

    - Melissa Ivey

    - Linda Ronstadt and Ann Savoy

    - Ronnie Spector

    - Corinne Bailey Rae

    - Dean Friedman