Cover art for podcast Above The Basement - Boston Music and Conversation

Above The Basement - Boston Music and Conversation

209 EpisodesProduced by Chuck Clough and Ronnie HirschbergWebsite

Above the Basement offers casual and candid discussions with musicians, artists, producers and others from Boston and beyond. Conversations will inform and entertain listeners with experiences from those shaping Boston's music community and for whom music is a passion. You will hear their stories, h… read more

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Episode 187 - Linnea Herzog

September 9th, 2021


Linnea Herzog is someone you don’t miss when you walk by her. Or see on stage.  And I would surmise at her day job as a neuroscientist at The Broad …

Episode 186 - JJ Gonson

August 5th, 2021


I saw my first show at Once Ballroom in Somerville a few years ago, entering the building, wondering if I just walked into a bar mitzvah, or as JJ Gonson first thought when she saw the room for the first time, a high …

Episode 185 - The Suitcase Junket (Part Two)

July 29th, 2021


Matt Lorenz,  AKA The Suitcase Junket.   Many sounds come from this one-man band.  Sounds from actual suitcases, from guitars found in the trash to any number of odds and ends Matt procures, invents, and salvages. He is …

Episode 184 - The Suitcase Junket (Part One)

July 29th, 2021


Matt Lorenz,  AKA The Suitcase Junket.   Many sounds come from this one-man band.  Sounds from actual suitcases, from guitars found in the trash to any number of odds and ends Matt procures, invents, and salvages. He is …

Episode 183 - The Wolff Sisters

July 22nd, 2021


When COVID first hit Boston and we were sequestered in our hobbit holes, we decided to offer a window for everyone to see and hear live music for a …

Episode 182 - Knar Bedian

July 8th, 2021


I was very happy to sit with Knar Bedian, Founder and Editor in Chief of Sound of Boston music blog.  I discovered Sound of Boston before I started Above The Basement and I am a huge fan.  I asked Knar on in the early …

Episode 181 - Avi Salloway

June 1st, 2021


Like so many of the Boston musicians we have talked to, Avi Salloway from the band Billy Wylder is a very thoughtful guy who has learned that as an …

Episode 180 - Juliana Hatfield

April 15th, 2021


Juliana Hatfield!    

If you did not know, Juliana is a Boston native and still resides in the city. You may see her finishing up her 10…ok maybe 5k …

Episode 179 - Oedipus

April 2nd, 2021


Boston Radio and WBCN legend, Oedipus, is someone who seems to have said yes to everything.  

Oedipus got his start as an intern in college radio in …

Episode 178 - Jennifer D'Angora and Ed Valauskas

March 18th, 2021


What is a Jamoke? Is a chump a jamoke?  We really have no idea.  But we love the question and will begin using the word Jamoke on a regular basis.

Episode 177 - Destiny Claymore

March 12th, 2021


We first heard of Destiny Claymore in an article on Vanyaland and then in another piece by the great Jed Gottlieb in The Boston Herald.  A Boston triple threat with an incredible, unique voice and dancing chops, Destiny …

Episode 176 - Tall Heights

February 25th, 2021


We think what makes our conversations interesting is the face-to-face we always have and actually required at one point.  We used to say no to virtual conversations.  But we aren’t idiots, as far as you know, and we are …

Episode 175 - Neighbor - Part Two

February 5th, 2021


Part Two!

Fans of Phish, Pink Floyd, The Grateful Dead, these fans are all great. But nothing compares to the fans of the homegrown Boston band …

Episode 174 - Neighbor - Part One

February 4th, 2021


Fans of Phish, Pink Floyd, The Grateful Dead, these fans are all great. But nothing compares to the fans of the homegrown Boston band Neighbor.  

Episode 173 - The Devil's Twins

January 29th, 2021


We had a remote conversation with the Boston band The Devil’s Twins, who we’ve wanted to have on for a while.  We do not like remote conversations, but we did find it was better than having them in person with masks on. …

Episode 172 - Danielle O. Johnson

January 21st, 2021


We sat with DJ, entrepreneur, and the first black woman to own a digital radio station, Ms. Hot Sauce – AKA Danielle O Johnson.

This is probably the most raunchy episode we have ever done, which isn’t really saying much …

Episode 171 - U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo

January 14th, 2021


Boston born U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo got her start at Wally’s Jazz Café when she was tricked into performing her poetry in front of an audience by her friends.  But her journey reaches much farther than the great Wally’s. 

Episode 170 - Jonathan Abbott

December 30th, 2020


Anyone who grew up in the Boston area in the '70s will remember the GBH theme music that played on our TV sets while we sat 10 inches away from the TV and watched Sesame Street or the always hip kids show Zoom. No, not …

Episode 169 - Twisted Pine

December 17th, 2020


Chuck had a solo conversation with the great New England band Twisted Pine.   

He sat with fiddle player Kathleen Parks, mandolin player Dan Bui and …

Episode 168 - STL GLD - BSO

December 10th, 2020


In early November we ran across an article in the Boston Globe about a collaboration between the Boston Hip Hop group STL GLD and The Boston Symphony …

Episode 167 - Kemp Harris

December 3rd, 2020


It has been an insane few weeks, which is an understatement to say the least since that could apply to the entirety of 2020 if not the last four …

Episode 166 - Clint Conley

November 19th, 2020


Mission of Burma has been called, and we quote, " of the most important American rock bands of the last 20 years." That quote may be a bit dated, as now it may be 40 years, but either way, Clint Conley may find …

Episode 165 - Ruby Mack

November 12th, 2020


We had an opportunity to sit with Abby (Abs) Kahler and Zoe Young - two of the members of the feminist folk foursome from Western, MA in the Pioneer …

Episode 164 - Mark Kates

October 29th, 2020


Boston native Mark Kates is the founder of Fenway Recordings and manages several bands, including MGMT, The Cribs, Mission of Burma, Doves, Swim Mountain and KUNZITE.

He had been in the biz since he was a kid, signing a …

Episode 163 - Erin McKeown - Part Two

October 22nd, 2020


We took a lovely drive to western ma to sit alongside a flowing river with our new best friend Erin McKeown.  

OK, she might not be our best friend, but we certainly wish she was.  Erin is a force of nature.  A …

Episode 162 - Erin McKeown - Part One

October 22nd, 2020


We took a lovely drive to Western MA to sit alongside a flowing river with our new best friend Erin McKeown. 

OK, she might not be our best friend, but we certainly wish she was.  Erin is a force of nature.  A persistent …

Episode 161 - Brandie Blaze

October 15th, 2020


Every time we ask someone in the music business what is the most exciting thing happening in music in the City of Boston, we always get the same …

Episode 160 - Chris Smither

October 8th, 2020


Every once in a while we get to chat with a Boston legend.

Chris Smither is one of the most distinguished and authentic singer-songwriter/bluesmen …

Episode 159 - Hilken Mancini

October 1st, 2020


Ron and I sat in the back room of 40 South Street in Jamaica Plain, buried in denim, and various other piles of vintage clothing with our masks over …

Episode 158 - Lisa Bastoni

August 27th, 2020


Chuck drove out to Western Massachusetts to sit on Lisa’s front porch surrounded by chickens, a vocal rooster, two small children having an amazing time doing whatever small children feel like doing, bees and the …

Episode 157 - Paul Hansen

August 6th, 2020


Paul Hansen is The Grownup Noise – a Boston band formed in 2005 with bassist Adam Sankowski – that has had an impressive list of members too long to …

Episode 156 - Mistress Carrie

July 23rd, 2020


With a name like Mistress Carrie, we might be forgiven if we were a bit cautious asking her on ATB for a chat.  But we knew what we were getting into.  Boston native Mistress Carrie is a badass.  She was until recently …

Episode 155 - Cliff Notez

July 16th, 2020


Boston Hip Hop artist Cliff Notez is another guest we had been trying to get on ATB for a long time.    He’s a busy busy guy – writing, composing, …

Episode 154 - Geoff Edgers

July 2nd, 2020


For our first in-person but appropriately distanced conversation since COVID hit, we were fortunate to sit with fellow Bostonian, author, documentary filmmaker and National Arts reporter for the Washington Post, Geoff …

Episode 153 - Corey SantOne DePina

June 25th, 2020


We first met Corey SantOne DePina at a Mighty Mighty Bosstones concert not too long ago with some of his students at Zumix, and we could tell right …

BONUS - Ashleigh Gordon

June 16th, 2020


This is our second conversation with a former guest that we thought was important to have due to recent events.

We spoke with Ashleigh Gordon - …

Episode 152 - Ry Cavanaugh

June 11th, 2020


The COVID pandemic hit all of us quickly and our plans for the spring, summer and perhaps beyond, were scuttled.  We know of many musicians who were planning to tour a new album and unfortunately they had to postpone, …

Anngelle Wood Bonus

June 9th, 2020


We wanted to catch up with a few of our previous guests to see how they are doing in this quarantine from which, thankfully, we are slowly emerging.

Episode 151 - Ben Reigle

June 4th, 2020


On one fine day back in early March, The ATB team drove out to Greenfield, MA to Great Spirits Tattoo to not only talk with musician and artist Ben Reigal, but also to get Chuck another tattoo!

Chuck got a tattoo of a …

Episode 150 - Ghost GRL

March 12th, 2020


Our first visit to the Boston Music Awards a few years ago was an eye opener and introduced us to many new and established Boston Artists we had not yet seen or heard. That was in the earlier days of this podcast.  

At …

Episode 149 - Porsha Olayiwola

February 28th, 2020


If you did not know, the City of Boston has a Poet Laureate.  The job maintains that the appointed poet must be a significant fixture in Boston's …

Hallways Episode 002 - Patty Griffin

February 20th, 2020


You’ve hopefully heard us talk about a new project we have in partnership with the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame – a podcast called Hallways.  

If …

Episode 148 - David Bieber

February 13th, 2020


If you have ever been to the Verb Hotel, or perhaps seen the recent documentary WBCN – An American Revolution, or hopefully visited the Folk …

Bestor Cram: JFK - The Last Speech

February 8th, 2020


We met with Bestor to talk about JFK - The Last Speech – the very last public speech John F. Kennedy gave before he was assassinated three weeks later. We were fortunate to have a special guest Roger Hirschberg join us …

FTBNL/Hot Stove Cool Music

February 3rd, 2020


About a year ago we had the great opportunity to speak with Baseball Writer’s hall of famer and longtime musician Mr. Peter Gammons at his annual …

Episode 146 - Bestor Cram

January 17th, 2020


Boston documentary filmmaker Bestor Cram founded and also serves as creative director for the Boston-based documentary film and museum production company called Northern Light Productions. He has had films screened at …

Episode 145 - Chadwick Stokes and Sybil Gallagher

December 19th, 2019


We sat with Sybil Gallagher and her husband Chadwick Stokes from the band DISPATCH – aka The Biggest Band No One Has Ever Heard Of. This despite the …

Episode 144 - Charles Laquidara

December 5th, 2019


WBCN legend Charles Laquidara and also the infamous Dwayne Ingalls Glasscock joined us for a conversation at the recently opened Woods Hill Pier 4 in Boston. 

This just a week before Charles as well as Red Sox Hall of …

Episode 143 - Matt York

October 16th, 2019


Chuck Clough  0:00  

Hello, this is Chuck from Above the Basement Boston music and conversation. Hey, we have missed you all so much and hope to get …

Episode 142 - Lori McKenna

September 19th, 2019


We sat with Lori McKenna before her recent show celebrating the 15th anniversary of her album Return To Bittertown at Cary Memorial Hall in …

Episode 141 - Jack Bradley

August 22nd, 2019


When we think of the blended art forms of music and photography, there is a something iconic that can come out of a still picture of the great artists of the past.

Catching a glimpse of Jimi Hendrix at Woodstock or …

Episode 140 - Jake Shimabukuro

July 25th, 2019


We met up with Jake Shimabukuro before his concert in front of a sold out crowd at Cary Memorial Hall in Lexington, Massachusetts.

Jake became an …

ICS009 - Circus Trees

July 16th, 2019


Here is the long awaited live acoustic set that the wonderful Circus Trees performed for us after their episode back in June of 2019.

They played …

Episode 139 - Circus Trees

June 19th, 2019


We saw Circus Trees at The Sinclair in Cambridge when we were there to celebrate The Record Co. and their upcoming new space in Boston.

Three young …

ATB On The Radio - with Anngelle Wood

June 17th, 2019


Here is a short live interview that we did on 91.5 WMFO radio with Anngelle Wood from Boston Emissions for On The Town with Mikey D - a show that was started 30 years ago.

Sadly, Mike passed in 2003 but the show …

Episode 138 - Melinda Doolittle

May 30th, 2019


Ronnie 1:19 Above the basement awesome music and conversation. We are listening to Melinda Doolittle singing I'm a woman in 2007 with a voice that …

Episode 137 - Anngelle Wood

May 24th, 2019


We are always fascinated to talk about the state of Boston music and Boston music history with people in the business. Terrestrial radio is a huge part of that – WBCN, WFNX, WZLX - if you grew up in Boston those …

Episode 136 - Madeleine Steczynski

May 16th, 2019


We sat with Zumix founder Madeleine Steczynski. ZUMIX is an East Boston-based nonprofit organization dedicated to building the Boston community …

Episode 135 - Arielle

May 9th, 2019


We met up with phenom guitarist and singer Arielle and her band as they road tripped in from the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland to The Red …

Episode 134 - Kabir Sen

April 25th, 2019


Kabir Sen, AKA MC Kabir is an educator at heart who teaches through music. He teaches at Shady Hill School in Cambridge and his students are some of …

Episode 133 - Billy Beard

April 18th, 2019


When we first began this podcast and started putting together names of people we would like as guests, Billy Beard was on the primary list. Not …

Episode 132 - Dr. Francis Collins

April 12th, 2019


National Institutes of Health Director Dr. Francis Collins is a rock-star of science who was instrumental in the identification of multiple genes for …

In Concert Series 009 - A Far Cry

March 29th, 2019


A performance by A Far Cry - Live at City Winery Boston - February 28, 2019 in Boston, MA.

Recorded after our fourth ConcertCast - a conversation and performance in front of a live audience.

To listen to the entire …

Episode 131 - A Far Cry

March 29th, 2019


Episode 131 - a ConcertCast Event with A Far Cry

Classical music is pretty much the only music in the world that still sounds beautiful when the …

Episode 130 - Ari Hest

March 15th, 2019


Episode 130 - a conversation with Ari Hest.

With a distinctive voice and beautiful melodies, Ari Hest has carved out a diverse career as an …

Episode 129 - Livingston Taylor

March 7th, 2019


Episode 129 - a conversation with Livingston Taylor.

Boston’s own Livingston Taylor is a musician, teacher and interested man. Yes – we said interestED, not interesting. Not that Livingston isn’t interesting, because he …

Episode 128 - Doris Kearns Goodwin

March 1st, 2019


We are taking a little detour from our usual format to bring you this very special episode.

We hosted a conversation between the illustrious sports reporters Gordon Edes and Steve Buckley with arguably the most well …

Episode 127 - Jared Bowen

February 10th, 2019


Episode 127 - a conversation with Jared Bowen.

We took a ride early one morning to the WGBH studios in Brighton, Mass to sit with arts and entertainment reporter and Boston native Jared Bowen. Jared has talked with all …

Episode 126 - Oompa

January 30th, 2019


Episode 126 - a conversation with Oompa

We first ran into Oompa at Boston One Night Band back in 2018 – listen to Episode 123 for our conversation with Richard Bouchard about that event - but Oompa immediately stood out …

Episode 125 - Peter Gammons

January 13th, 2019


Episode 125 - a conversation with Peter Gammons.

As a Boston Red Sox fan living in the NY/NJ area back in the 90’s and early 2000’s, life as a Sox …

Episode 124 - Zina Ellis of Cinderella

December 21st, 2018


Every so often we get the opportunity to catch a musical coming through Boston and then sit with the actors or musicians for a chat.

We were especially lucky to have a conversation with the lovely Zina Ellis who plays …

Episode 123 - Richard Bouchard

December 20th, 2018


Episode 123 - a conversation with Richard Bouchard.

Last year we went to our first One Night Band event at The Sinclair and left with a long list of possible guests – Thalia Zedek, Cliff Notez and Oompa to name just a …

Episode 122 - Jenee Halstead

December 13th, 2018


Episode 122 - a conversation with Jenee Halstead.

We are no longer surprised that our guests are much more than just musicians. Jenee Halstead is a great example.

In addition to being a singer-songwriter, Jenee is also …

In Concert Series 008 - Mike Block

December 9th, 2018


Mike Block - Live at Indian Hill Music - November 17, 2018 in Littleton, MA.

Recorded after our Mike Block ConcertCast - a conversation and performance in front of a live audience.

To listen to the entire conversation, …

Episode 121 - Mike Block

December 6th, 2018


Cellist, educator, innovator and pioneer, Mike Block breaks the mold and the norms. He plays, sings and creates percussion with what is normally …

Episode 120 - Roger Brown

November 28th, 2018


Berklee College of Music in Boston is one of the premier music schools in the world. We have talked with many fantastic Berklee grads, including the …

Episode 119 - Pardis Sabeti

November 22nd, 2018


We were honored to sit with the amazing Pardis Sabeti who is doing her part to help those in need with her work at The Sabeti Lab where she is …

Episode 118 - Music, Addiction and Recovery

November 17th, 2018


Music has a way of bringing people together, and is a language we share.   Recovery has its own language, within its own culture of addiction. …

Episode 117 - Kara Elliott-Ortega

October 31st, 2018


We went to City Hall in Boston to talk with the new Chief of Arts and Culture Kara Elliott-Ortega. The Mayors Office of Arts and Cultures mission is …

Episode 116 - Katie LaMark

October 18th, 2018


Boston native Katie LaMark grew up in a musical family and hit the ground running after graduating from High School in Andover MA.

A musical theater …

Episode 115 - Ceci Juno

October 11th, 2018


One thing that is clear when you have a conversation with Ceci Juno, thoughtfulness is the theme to her work, whether in the studio or in the …

Episode 114 - Thalia Zedek

October 3rd, 2018


Thalia Zedek came to Boston in 1979 and started her first band White Women and from there became ingrained the Boston music scene – a mainstay through an impressive string of different bands including Dangerous Birds, …

Episode 113 - Wyc Grousbeck

September 27th, 2018


Most of you probably know Wyc Grousbeck as CEO, Governor and co-owner of the Boston Celtics. Some of you may know him as a member of the business community with Causeway Media Partners, or even for his philanthropy …

Episode 112 - Rob Bleetstein

September 19th, 2018


In our conversation with Austin’s Darden Smith​ last year, we covered some of the history of Americana. Recently Ronnie was on a call with Mr. Smith who highly recommended getting in touch with Rob Bleetstein - who we …

Episode 111 - Above The Noise

September 12th, 2018


Whether we realize it or not, the current opioid crisis affects us all. And while many people donate their time and resources to fight this huge problem, we met two women who imagined something unique and bigger.

In …

Episode 110 - Jimmy Connor

August 29th, 2018


We had heard of Jimmy Connor over the past year through the grapevine – rumors of a young musician with guitar chops making a name for himself while …

Episode 109 - Will Dailey

August 15th, 2018


In this day and age we all seem to crave the connection to others that seems to be missing in this environment of screens and social media. Will Dailey wants to break down that wall. And if you don’t want to climb over …

Episode 108 - Arnold McCuller

August 8th, 2018


Arnold McCuller. As his website states – you may not know the name, but you certainly know the voice.

Every summer, James Taylor and his wonderful …

Episode 107 - Cirque du Soleil

July 30th, 2018


"We're not trying to tell you what to think," is what Francis Jalbert tells us about the philosophy behind every Cirque du Soleil production.


In Concert Series 007 - Chris Trapper - Live at City Winery

July 27th, 2018


A performance by Chris Trapper - Live at City Winery - June 24, 2018 in Boston, MA.

Recorded after our second ConcertCast - a conversation and performance in front of a live audience.

To listen to the entire …

Episode 106 - Chris Trapper

July 25th, 2018


Our very first ConcertCast with Brent Shuttleworth was an experiment. Have our guest play a few, sit with us for 20 minutes or so and have a Q&A …

Episode 105 - Bearstronaut

July 18th, 2018


We met with a few of the fellas from the Boston electronic-pop band Bearstronaut - David Martineau and Nate Marsden at The Sinclair Kitchen.

We quickly went through all the annoying questions - where their name came …

Episode 104 - Old Crow Medicine Show

July 11th, 2018


We were able to catch the boys of Old Crow Medicine Show at their Master Class at Berklee College of Music – and what we learned there is that they …

Episode 103 - James MacDonald

July 4th, 2018


Having the title of Director Of Good Vibes would be a daunting title for any normally pessimistic human being, but James MacDonald is an optimist.

Episode 102 - James Burton and Will Koffel

June 28th, 2018


We took a trip to beautiful Symphony Hall in early June to sit with Tanglewood Festival Chorus Conductor and Boston Symphony Orchestra Choral …

Episode 101 - Jim Olsen

June 20th, 2018


With a background in radio, Jim Olsen co-founded Signature Sounds with Mark Thayer in Northampton, MA in 1995 and works with some of the finest …

Episode 099 - Mickey Hart - Part Two

June 15th, 2018


Meet Mickey Hart: part philosopher, scientist, shaman…and passionate drummer. Mickey and The Grateful Dead have offered up the groove and the melody …

Episode 098 - Mickey Hart - Part One

June 13th, 2018


Meet Mickey Hart: part philosopher, scientist, shaman…and passionate drummer. Mickey and The Grateful Dead have offered up the groove and the melody …

On Your Feet with Above The Basement - Take 5 Tuesday - A New Broadway

June 11th, 2018


Ladies and Gentlemen and all fans of On Your Feet!

Here is our final installment of Take 5 Tuesday where we offer you a snippet of the conversation with On Your Feet! band members Jorge Casas (bass) and Clay Ostwald …

Episode 097 - Tony and Angela DiTerlizzi

June 6th, 2018


Illustrator and author Tony Diterlizzi got his start drawing for Dungeons & Dragons but soon began "worldbuilding" though his books that include Jimmy Zangwow's Out-of-this-World Moon Pie Adventure, The Spider and …

On Your Feet with Above The Basement - Take 5 Tuesday - Crash and Recovery

June 4th, 2018


Ladies and Gentlemen and all fans of On Your Feet!

Here is our fourth installment of Take 5 Tuesday where we offer you a snippet of the conversation with On Your Feet! band members Jorge Casas (bass) and Clay Ostwald …

Episode 096 - Ashe Gordon

May 30th, 2018


Violist and holistic educator, Ashe has played all over the world with a number orchestras and ensembles, and has collaborated with many living …

On Your Feet with Above The Basement - Take 5 Tuesday - Conga Time

May 28th, 2018


Ladies and Gentlemen and all fans of On Your Feet!

Here is our third installment of Take 5 Tuesday where we offer you a snippet of the conversation with On Your Feet! band members Jorge Casas (bass) and Clay Ostwald …

Episode 095 - Joyce Kulhawik

May 23rd, 2018


The local evening news in the 80's was such a big part of our day. At 6pm we’d sit down to watch TV and get our fill of what’s happening in our city and the world.

A lot has changed since those days, but the names and …

On Your Feet with Above The Basement - Take 5 Tuesday - The Crossover

May 21st, 2018


Ladies and Gentlemen and all fans of On Your Feet!:

Here is our second installment of Take 5 Tuesday where we offer you a snippet of the conversation with On Your Feet! band members Jorge Casas (bass) and Clay Ostwald …

Episode 94 - Town Meeting

May 16th, 2018


We sat with Luke, Russ and Brendan Condon - three brothers from the Boston band Town Meeting a few weeks ago and it quickly went off the rails.

In …

On Your Feet with Above The Basement - Take 5 Tuesday - New Machine

May 13th, 2018


Ladies and Gentlemen and all fans of On Your Feet!: We would like to introduce you to the story of Emilio and Gloria Estefan as told in the Broadway …

In Concert Series 006 - Brent Shuttleworth - Live at Rapscallions

May 12th, 2018


A performance by Brent Shuttleworth - Live at Rapscallions - April 11, 2018 in Acton MA.

Recorded after our first ConcertCast - a conversation and performance in front of a live audience.

To listen to the entire …

Episode 093 - Brent Shuttleworth

May 9th, 2018


When we got word that Brent Shuttleworth was coming to town, we saw it as an opportunity to celebrate the Nashville / Boston connection, new and old …

Episode 092 - Dutch ReBelle

May 2nd, 2018


Hip-Hop artist and proud "Queen of the Bean", Dutch ReBelle has earned national attention for her lyrical punch and powerful performances.

In 2014 …

Episode 091 - On Your Feet

April 23rd, 2018


ON YOUR FEET! The musical is a story of rhythm and resilience.

It covers the lives of Gloria Estefan and her husband Emilio Estefan to and through success, and tells a story of setbacks and love. The foundation is built …

Episode 090 - Cambridge Rindge & Latin HS

April 20th, 2018


What is the first song that comes right to your mind?

When you think of the world around us, or a social issue - why does this song resonate?

These are the kinds of questions we asked the students at Cambridge Rindge …

Episode 089 - Ryan Montbleau

April 11th, 2018


We first saw Ryan Montbleau back in 2012 in Boston on a Rock and Blues Cruise that featured the Ryan Montbleau Band. It was a full boat and was …

Episode 088 - Wu Man

April 4th, 2018


Internationally acclaimed soloist, composer and educator, Wu Man is a master of the Pipa, an instrument that dates back almost 2000 years. Wu Man …

Episode 087 - Jonatha Brooke

March 28th, 2018


Jonatha Brooke's first band - the critically acclaimed The Story with the talented Jennifer Kimball was the beginning of an impressive run of …

Episode 086 - David Minehan - Part Two

March 23rd, 2018


This is part two of a two part episode.

We met Sir David Minehan when we walked up the stairs to the wonderful rooms of his recording studio Woolly …

Episode 085 - David Minehan - Part One

March 21st, 2018


We met Sir David Minehan when we walked up the stairs to the wonderful rooms of his recording studio Woolly Mammoth Sound to begin recording our …

Episode 084 - RIPE - Part Two

March 16th, 2018


This is part two of our conversation with RIPE so if you haven’t heard the first, go to to listen.

Coming out of …

Episode 083 - RIPE - Part One

March 14th, 2018


Coming out of Berklee College of Music, RIPE has been called many things - from neo-soul to funk/pop to jam band - but whatever genre they fall into, …

Episode 082 - Waitress

March 7th, 2018


Waitress The Musical, written by Jessie Nelson with original music and lyrics by six time Grammy nominee Sara Bareilles, is currently on a US tour and while the Boston show has completed its run the tour will continue …

QP005 - SongwritingWith:Soldiers

March 6th, 2018


We recently published an episode with singer-songwriter Mary Gauthier and talked about her inspiring work with the organization Songwriting with …

Episode 081 - Mary Gauthier

February 28th, 2018


Mary Gauthier didn't pick up a guitar until later in life, and although finding success as a Boston restaurateur, certain events forced a change. Ten albums later she continues to tell stories of her past, her own …

Episode 080 - Jay Keyser

February 24th, 2018


Dr. Jay Keyser is known to many as MIT Professor Emeritus of Linguistics. He’s written several books and countless essays and poems throughout his …

Episode 079 - Mark Erelli

February 14th, 2018


Massachusetts native Mark Erelli is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer and has been in the Boston music scene as a professional …

Episode 078 - The Mom Episode

February 7th, 2018


Chuck and Ron know all their listeners have frequently pondered the following question:

What do their Mom’s think of Above The Basement?

They decided …

Episode 077 - David Wax Museum

January 31st, 2018


We met with David Wax and Suz Slezak - appropriately enough in a guesthouse where they were staying with their own family of four.

They are on a 10 city tour as a duo - humming along the way with new creations of …

Episode 076 - Boston Children's Chorus MLK Celebration

January 25th, 2018


The final installment of our Boston Children's Chorus episodes! 

We sat with BCC Founder Hubie Jones and a few board members, sponsors and supporters, including Joel and Sue Sherman, Meg Clough and Bob Rivers just …

Episode 075 - Matthew Stubbs

January 17th, 2018


We talked with Matthew Stubbs as he was just about to take the floor with his band Matthew Stubbs and The Antiguas for his 2017 Boston Music Award winning residency DownBeat Mondays at The Sinclair.

The B-Movies showing …

Episode 074 - Vancil Cooper

January 11th, 2018


We caught Vancil just before he departed for his 18 month journey as principle drummer on Hamilton: An American Musical.

Hailing from Boston, Vancil is an award winning jazz drummer, producer and musical director. …

Episode 073 - Tom Odell

January 3rd, 2018


British pianist, vocalist and performer Tom Odell writes and sings from the soul and gives an unforgettable live performance with his band that is …

Episode 072 - Boston Children's Chorus - Part Two

December 31st, 2017


We all have a voice but seldom can we come together to sing in harmony. The BCC makes this possible literally and figuratively from as early as age 7 …

Episode 071 - Boston Children's Chorus - Part One

December 30th, 2017


We all have a voice but seldom can we come together to sing in harmony. The BCC makes this possible literally and figuratively from as early as age 7 …

Episode 070 - The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

December 20th, 2017


We sat with Lisa Rodio, Tim Steiner and Fraser Gordon at their rehearsal space in the north of London and discussed why they do what they do and what we can expect from them in the near future.

When you mix musical …

Episode 069 - Leland Sklar - Part Two

December 15th, 2017


We traveled across the pond to London speak with legendary bassist and awesome human Leland Sklar the morning after his performance on tour with Phil …

Episode 068 - Leland Sklar - Part One

December 12th, 2017


We traveled across the pond to London speak with legendary bassist and awesome human Leland Sklar the morning after his performance on tour with Phil …

Episode 067 - Carissa Johnson

December 5th, 2017


Boston born and raised rocker Carissa Johnson plays with energy and attitude and her quick hitting songs are a throwback to gritty punk rock and roll.

Episode 066 - Vapors of Morphine

November 22nd, 2017


Vapors of Morphine is Boston's own Dana Colley (baritone saxophone), drummer Jerome Deupree and New Orleans transplant singer/guitarist Jeremy Lyons.

Episode 065 - Kyle Bent

November 19th, 2017


Kyle Bent has been rapping in Randolph, Massachusetts since the third grade and began recording his own material soon after that. Over the years he …

Episode 064 - CONTACT

November 15th, 2017


Indie electronic trio CONTACT with Matt Rhoades, Austin Bryant and John Mellino sat with us to talk about their dark, melodic orchestral pop with an '80s post-punk influence.

CONTACT's sound blends infections hooks, …

Episode 063 - The Fray

November 12th, 2017


We sat around a very tiny table in the art room of a local school with the Grammy nominated and chart topping band The Fray.

The Fray’s debut album, …

Episode 062 - Julie Rhodes

November 8th, 2017


Julie Rhodes began singing in front of audiences only a few years ago and has taken Boston by storm.

Her debut album Bound To Meet The Devil has …

Episode 061 - Kris Delmhorst

November 1st, 2017


Singer, songwriter and instrumentalist Kris Delmhorst sat with us at Club Passim and talked about recording her new album The Wild, her upcoming tour, her dreams of having a porch to play guitar on with her musician …

Episode 060 - Susan Cattaneo

October 25th, 2017


Singer-songwriter and teacher at Berklee College of Music, Susan Cattaneo switched gears towards a life in music after finding a sign in the cracks …

Episode 059 - Alyssa Spector

October 18th, 2017


Alyssa is the founder of Lysten Boston and has been booking, promoting and developing Boston bands and artists since 2014. 

This is the second year in a row she has been nominated for the Boston Music Awards Promoter of …

Episode 058 - Ryan Miller

October 11th, 2017


We made a trip up to Burlington, VT and ventured to the home of Ryan Miller, the Accidental Ambassador of the great state of VT.

Maybe you ran into Ryan in an apple orchard in Vermont, or possibly downtown Burlington. …

Episode 057 - Justin Crowther

October 4th, 2017


While touring as a rock drummer for Vermont's own Waylon Speed, Justin had a crazy idea: to manufacture vinyl records.

In three years he has produced thousands of unique records riding the vinyl wave in Burlington, VT.

Episode 056 - Roberto Plano

September 27th, 2017


In 2001, twenty-two year old Roberto Plano won first prize at the Cleveland International Piano Competition​.

Sixteen years later he emigrated to …

Episode 055 - Alastair Moock

September 20th, 2017


Grammy nominated Folk and Americana singer-songwriter Alastair Moock became inspired by music at a young age when he first saw Pete Seeger and Arlo …

ICS003 - Walter Sickert and the Army of Broken Toys - Live at The Sinclair

September 17th, 2017


Walter Sickert and the Army of Broken Toys - Live at The Sinclair recorded August 26, 2017 in Cambridge, MA

01 - How are all you *** doin? 02 - …

Episode 054 - Moe Pope

September 13th, 2017


Indie hip-hop artist, rapper, songwriter and contemporary painter, Boston, MA native Moe Pope is a talent. His lyrics reflect his story - touching on community, fatherhood, love and the human condition.

Formerly with …

Episode 053 - Blue Man Group - Part Two

September 8th, 2017


This is part two of our conversation with Blue Man Group. We sat with resident General Manager Jonathan Screnci, Blue Man Mike Brown, and drummers Kyle Harris and Kevin Asmus before a performance at The Charles …

Episode 052 - Blue Man Group - Part One

September 7th, 2017


Blue Man Group is a dynamic mix of art, music, comedy and technology. Founded in 1991, this pop culture phenomenon has been seen by over 35 million …

Episode 051 - Ruby Rose Fox

August 30th, 2017


This award winning singer-songwriter, actor and artist is a force to be reckoned with. Ruby's deep, unique voice is surprising at first, but she soon …

Episode 050 - State of the Conversation Q&A

August 23rd, 2017


So this is our 50th episode and Ronnie and I decided to have a State of the Conversation.

What an amazing year! We've been downloaded in all 50 states (again, a nice round number) and in over 50 countries (we sense a …

Episode 049 - Charles Haynes

August 16th, 2017


Charles Haynes is a drummer, producer, musical director and strong believer in the power of listening. He learned this through constant gigging at …

Episode 048 - Don Henley

August 10th, 2017


This year marks the bicentennial of the birth of Henry David Thoreau, local environmentalist, scientist and artist. After talking with the founder of the Walden Woods project, Don Henley, it becomes clear that Thoreau …

QP003 - Jeffrey Cramer

August 6th, 2017


As we were sitting at The Thoreau Institute Library in Lincoln, Massachusetts waiting for Don Henley to arrive we were having a nice chat with …

Episode 047 - Walter Sickert and the Army of Broken Toys

August 2nd, 2017


Seeing Walter and his band of merry musicians play live is a visceral experience not to be missed. With a mix of Dr. Teeth, Edward Gorey and Tim Burton, they bring legit musical chops, original songwriting and a magical …

Episode 046 - Martin Sexton

July 26th, 2017


If you have never seen or heard Martin play live, you should get tickets to his current tour immediately. With prolific songwriting, unique …

Quick Preview 002 - Walter Sickert talks "Some Freaks"

July 24th, 2017


This is a quick preview of a conversation we had with Walter Sickert and the Army of Broken Toys where they talk about scoring an amazing movie called Some Freaks – which was written and directed by Ian Macallister …

Episode 045 - Dr. Lisa Wong

July 19th, 2017


Dr. Lisa Wong is a musician and pediatrician, a violinist and educator, a wife, mom and mentor. From Hawaii she came to Harvard and has remained a …

In Concert Series 002 - Honeysuckle - Live at Club Passim

July 12th, 2017


A performance at the famous Club Passim recorded June 30, 2017 in Cambridge, MA. 

Fellow Berklee College of Music grads Holly McGarry, Benjamin …

Episode 044 - Honeysuckle

July 5th, 2017


We have been major fans of Honeysuckle from the moment we saw them on The Sinclair stage opening for The Ballroom Thieves. Fellow Berklee College of …

Episode 043 - Jewel

June 29th, 2017


Jewel is a singer-songwriter, actress, author, mother and wellness advocate. Among her numerous accolades she has earned four Grammy Award …

Episode 042 - Jennifer Kimball

June 22nd, 2017


Jennifer Kimball was ½ of the critically acclaimed band The Story in the early 90's, which was a springboard for her career as a solo artist.

With …

Episode 041 - Andy Cambria

June 14th, 2017


An accomplished flatpicker, singer and songwriter, Andy is one of the many knowledgable musicians at The Music Emporium in Lexington Massachusetts – …

Episode 040 - Josh Bhatti

June 7th, 2017


Josh Bhatti is with The Bowery Presents in Boston - a concert promotion and venue management organization that runs multiple venues in Boston …

Episode 039 - Keith Lockhart

May 31st, 2017


When Keith Lockhart left Cincinnati for Boston to lead the Pops and take over John Williams tenure, he was 35 years old - the same age as Arthur …

Episode 038 - Jesse Dee

May 24th, 2017


R&B Boston native Jesse Dee has been described as a guitar-playing soul man and a modern day trailblazer inspired by the old school.

His great …

Episode 037 - Mark Ethier

May 18th, 2017


Mark Ethier is a musician and entrepreneur who co-founded innovative company called iZotope. As a matter of fact this was recorded in their amazing space in Kendall Square in Cambridge Massachusetts.

 Izotope is an …

Quick Preview 001 - Keith Lockhart talks about Ben Folds

May 17th, 2017


We wanted to give a quick preview of a conversation Ron and I had with Keith Lockhart – conductor of the Boston Pops and share a few words he had to …

Episode 036 - Ashley Jordan

May 10th, 2017


Singer songwriter and musician Ashley Jordan was busking in Harvard Square at the early age of 13, and has become a name to watch on the country music scene. She has opened for Trace Adkins, Sam Hunt, Chase Rice, Rusted …

Episode 035 - Darden Smith

May 4th, 2017


Darden Smith is a veteran songwriter with 15 albums under his belt, with frequent touring, writing and performing his mix of Americana, country and rock. In addition to this he has an amazing project called …

In Concert Series 001 - Darden Smith - Live at Club Passim

April 27th, 2017


A solo acoustic performance at the famous Club Passim recorded April 11, 2017 in Cambridge, MA. 

The talented and multifaceted Austin TX musician has …

Episode 034 - Regie Gibson

April 20th, 2017


Poet, songwriter, author and educator Regie Gibson has performed and lectured at schools, universities and theaters nationally and internationally.

Episode 033 - John Oates with Bonnie Hayes

April 13th, 2017


A special episode from the stage of The Sinclair. Bonnie Hayes sits with John to talk about  his evolution as a guitarist, musician, songwriter, …

Episode 032 - John Oates

April 6th, 2017


Guitarist, musician, songwriter, record producer and author of his new memoir Change of Seasons.  John is half of the best selling duo of all time Hall and Oates and is a member of both the American Songwriters Hall of …

Episode 031 - Gary Pihl

March 30th, 2017


Gary is the talented lead guitarist for the classic band BOSTON for over 30 years and has played with Sammy Hagar and Norman Greenbaum (Spirit in the Sky) among others.

In addition to his massive technical undertaking …

Episode 030 - The Loop

March 23rd, 2017


This local band should be an inspiration to all those musicians stuck in their basement.  While these guys...well...are still there, their …

Episode 029 - Trevor Solomon

March 16th, 2017


After 9 years of successfully running Musicfest NW in Portland, OR, Trevor moved to Boston to work with Crash Line Productions to manage booking for …

Episode 028 - The Butler Frogs

March 9th, 2017


This is a very self indulgent episode - Ronnie and I have talked about our band The Butler Frogs and the fact that we have an album coming out Spring …

Episode 027 - Jerome Deupree

March 2nd, 2017


Drummer Jerome Deupree played in The Humans which toured with Squeeze and opened for legends like Patti Smith and Iggy Pop. He was also with Bourbon Princess, Joe Morris, The Coots and the then jazz group Either …

Episode 026 - Chad Hollister

February 9th, 2017


For over 20 years guitarist, drummer and singer-songwriter Chad Hollister has headlined all over New England and has also opened for Bob Dylan, Paul …

Episode 025 - Greg Loughman

January 26th, 2017


An in-demand bass player, composer and teacher, Greg fronts his own indie band Lowman and jazz trio Sinistral as well as being a member of the …

Episode 024 - Sally Taylor

January 12th, 2017


Musician, teacher and the founder of Consenses, the artistic game of telephone that aims to form what she terms 'interpretive chains' that links all 5 senses. Music has been a chain in Sally’s own life, spending several …

Episode 023 - MB Padfield

January 6th, 2017


Boston based MB Padfield has the presence of a rocker and the grace of a singer-songwriter with an honest story to tell. She is a road warrior and not just because of her bedazzled Harley. We expect big things from her …

Episode 022 - Bonnie Hayes - Part Two

December 28th, 2016


Bonnie is the Songwriting Chair at Berklee College of Music in addition to her own work in bands and as a solo artist. She wrote Have A Heart that …

Episode 022 - Bonnie Hayes - Part One

December 21st, 2016


Bonnie is the Songwriting Chair at Berklee College of Music in addition to her own work in bands and as a solo artist. She wrote Have A Heart that …

Episode 021 - Adam Ezra

December 8th, 2016


Singer, songwriter and guitarist with The Adam Ezra Group, Adam's songs and live performances are amazing. But equally impressive is his nonprofit organization RallySound, whose mission is to inspire communities, …

Episode 020 - State of the Conversation

December 3rd, 2016


This is a short SOTC with hosts Chuck Clough and Ronnie Hirschberg.  

Episode 019 - Carla Ryder

December 1st, 2016


Speech and Language Pathologist by day, Carla Ryder sings with The Mudhens, Miriam, The Carla Ryder Band and also has her solo project. With numerous …

Episode 018 - Matt McArthur

November 17th, 2016


A graduate of Berklee College of Music's Music Production and Engineering program, Matt is the founder and Executive Director of New England’s first …

Episode 017 - Katrin Roush

November 10th, 2016


Boston-based singer/songwriter, a former busker with a powerful voice and great guitar chops, Katrin made her way to share the global stage with …

Episode 016 - Bob Childs

November 3rd, 2016


Fiddle player and psychologist, for over 30 years Bob Childs has been making violins and is the namesake for the world class ensemble Childsplay – …

Episode 015 - Dalton Sim

October 27th, 2016


Dalton Sim began his career in Somerville, MA managing Guster out of their apartment back in 1995. He has gone on to manage many other talented artists including Dispatch, Father John Misty, fun., Alexi Murdoch, Ben …

Episode 014 - Ona Jonaityte

October 19th, 2016


Flutist Ona Jonaityte is a fantastic player and teacher and a member of the Vento Chiaro Woodwind Quintet. 

Currently a piccolo player with the …

Episode 013 - Ali McGuirk

October 8th, 2016


Singer-songwriter Ali McGuirk has made quite a name for herself this past year or so with her amazing singing voice and fabulous band backing her up. …

Episode 012 - Bruce Marshall

October 6th, 2016


Bruce is a New England institution and has been in various bands including Bruce Marshall and The Clue and was a member of the Toy Caldwell Band. He has opened for Lynyrd Skynyrd, Charlie Daniels, The Outlaws, The Beach …

Episode 011 - David G. Moore

September 22nd, 2016


David G. Moore, also known across the pond as Malin, is a prolific singer and songwriter and the talented lead guitarist in the band The Butler Frogs

Episode 010 - State of the Conversation with Chuck Clough and Ronnie Hirschberg

September 15th, 2016


The State of the Conversation with hosts Chuck Clough and Ronnie Hirschberg. We discuss how things are going, what we hope to do and our current projects.

See more of who we are at

Join us! …

Episode 009 - Will Davies

September 8th, 2016


Drummer, guitarist, singer and songwriter extraordinaire Will Davies joins us this time around. Will is currently with the band Big Giant but has been in numerous other bands you may have heard of including New Million …

Episode 008 - Perry Bakalos

August 24th, 2016


Guitarist Perry Bakalos heads The Perry Bakalos Group and is a member of the award winning band Atlas Soul. Perry is also an electrical engineer and …

Episode 007 - Britt Connors

July 26th, 2016


Britt Connors is a fantastic singer-songwriter and guitarist. She came out with her first solo album in 2010 called The Bad Side of Good. She is now …

Episode 006 - Jen Kearney

July 25th, 2016


Jen is a talented singer-songwriter and pianist who combines funk, jazz, latin and pop.  We sat with her to talk about what makes her songwriting come together, her influences, baking skills and mutual affinity for all …

Episode 005 - Siri Smedvig

July 14th, 2016


Artist and violinist, Siri grew up in an artistic family in Seattle and has played the violin since the age of 7. She has played with the Boston Pops …

Episode 004 - Samantha DeSuze

June 30th, 2016


Radio DJ and Renaissance woman, Sam is a seasoned radio vet and has been on the radio dial all over New England and is currently on WCTK Cat Country at 98.1 FM and also at WATD on the South Shore at 95.9 FM.

Chuck …

Episode 003 - Flynn Cohen

June 16th, 2016


Flynn Cohen is an acoustic guitarist from the American folk band Low Lily – formerly called Annalivia. Flynn has performed all over the world with …

Episode 002 - Alison Keslow

June 15th, 2016


Performer, composer, session bassist and the leader of The Alison Keslow Group, she has shared the stage as well as recording credits with many artists, including Joan Armatrading, Jerry Marotta, Tony Levin, John …

Episode 001 - Chuck Clough & Ronnie Hirschberg

June 15th, 2016


The first conversation with hosts Chuck Clough and Ronnie Hirschberg.  They discuss how Above the Basement came to be, what they hope to do and their current projects.

See more of who we are at

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