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Monday, June 21st, 2021  

James Yorkston

James Yorkston – Listen to Our Interview in the New Episode of Our Podcast

Jun 17, 2021

Scottish singer/songwriter James Yorkston is our next guest on the Under the Radar Podcast. He discusses his childhood in Kingsbarns, Scotland, how he got signed to Domino Records, and some of the recurring themes in his music—of loss, mental health, and his disdain for organized religion.

Earlier this year, Yorkston released his 10th studio album, The Wide, Wide River, as James Yorkston and The Second Hand Orchestra. After two decades of releasing music with friends in his various bands—The Athletes, Yorkston/Thorne/Khan, and collaborations with The Fence Collective—on this album he plays with a collective of Swedish musicians, most of whom he hadn’t met prior to the recordings.

Yorkston had organized the recordings with Swedish musician and producer Karl-Jonas Winqvist after an invitation to play at Winqvist’s club in Stockholm, in 2019. Yorkston explained: “I had met Karl-Jonas a few times, but none of the others, except Cecilia Osterholm, who sourced me my first nyckelharpa. But I’d only met her once before, outside a gig in Stockholm, when she gave me the nyckelharpa in question. My motivation recording that way was just to shake it and see what happened.”

The experiment paid off lending the improvised songs a lightness of touch that suited the gravity of its lyrics.

A new Under the Radar episode is released every month, followed by a shorter 10-15min episode that acts as a companion piece. It discusses the making of the earlier episode. Listeners will get a chance to listen to tape that might not have made the earlier cut and other behind-the-scenes morsels. There will be opportunities in future episodes to invite fans on the mini episodes. You can also write in to the show at celine.teoblockey@undertheradarmag.com to share your thoughts. And we might read them out.

Follow us on Apple Podcasts and rate the show. You can also listen to us on Spotify and podcast apps such as Podchaser.

Each monthly episode of Under the Radar features an interview with a different musician conducted by host and producer Celine Teo-Blockey. Upcoming guests this season will include Lucy Dacus, Julien Baker, Adrian Younge, Xiu Xiu, Sleaford Mods, London Grammar, and more.

Also check our season 2, episode 1, which is our interview with The Flaming Lips’ Wayne Coyne (plus listen to our bonus mini behind-the-scenes episode on The Flaming Lips). Season 2, episode 2 featured Emmy the Great. Season 2, episode 3 featured Thao & The Get Down Stay Down.

On top of being available on all podcasting platforms the podcast also airs on WLUR, an NPR affiliate based in Lexington, VA (the city where Under the Radar is currently based). By Celine Teo-Blockey

Support Under the Radar on Patreon.

Thao & The Get Down Stay Down

Thao & The Get Down Stay Down – Listen to Our Interview in the New Episode of Our Podcast

Jun 09, 2021

Happy Pride Month!

Celebrate by having a listen to Thao Nguyen of Thao & The Get Down Stay Down, featured in the latest episode of the Under the Radar Podcast. She discusses coming out publically as queer for her 2020-released album, Temple, and how she is finally coming to terms with the internalized racism and homophobia she experienced growing up.

In the lead up to 2020’s Presidential election, Nguyen partnered with PIVOT and re-released her documentary Nobody Dies, to help raise awareness among Vietnamese Americans to get out their vote. The short film directed by filmmaker Todd Krolcyzk had aired originally on PBS in 2017.

Nguyen had written a personal essay, that was presented as a preface to the film’s re-release on the internet. She wrote: “I have not tried hard to promote or share this film and my unease with it has plagued me. I have found in my rewatching that I am always either giving too much or too little. In some instances, I am telling a part of my life I am not sure I was ready to tell.”

In the episode, Nguyen talks further about this discomfort that can come along with a career in music.

Last month, in line with AAPI Heritage Month, our mini episode featured tape that didn’t make it to the Emmy the Great (Emma-Lee Moss) episode. In it, Moss discusses her song “Heart Sutra”—which takes its name from the sacred Sanskrit text. Moss reveals how while working on her album April, she would listen to Faye Wong sing her version of the Heart Sutra repeatedly.

Wong was the heroine in Wong Kar Wai’s award winning film Chungking Express. Robin Guthrie and Simon Raymonde of Cocteau Twins collaborated with her in the ’90s, writing two songs for her 1996 Chinese album.

Our guest on the episode is writer Jenny Liao, discussing how she’s been finding comfort watching Wong Kar Wai films and lately listening to Emmy the Great songs to reconnect with her mother tongue.

Share your thoughts about any episode by writing us an Apple Podcast review or email: celine.teoblockey@undertheradarmag.com. You might also be invited as a guest on our mini-episode.

Follow us on Apple Podcasts and rate the show. You can also listen to us on Spotify and podcast apps such as Podchaser.

Each monthly episode of Under the Radar features an interview with a different musician conducted by host and producer Celine Teo-Blockey. Upcoming guests this season will include Julien Baker, Adrian Younge, James Yorkston, Sleaford Mods, London Grammar, and more.

Also check our season 2, episode 1, which is our interview with The Flaming Lips’ Wayne Coyne (plus listen to our bonus mini behind-the-scenes episode on The Flaming Lips). Season 2, episode 2 featured Emmy the Great.

On top of being available on all podcasting platforms the podcast also airs on WLUR, an NPR affiliate based in Lexington, VA (the city where Under the Radar is currently based). By Celine Teo-Blockey

Support Under the Radar on Patreon.

Emmy the Great

Emmy the Great – Listen to Our Interview in the New Episode of the Under the Radar Podcast

May 13, 2021

British singer/songwriter Emmy the Great is our second guest on Season 2 of the Under the Radar Podcast. Born in Hong Kong to a Chinese mother and English father, Emmy the Great is the moniker of Emma-Lee Moss, who is also a writer, journalist, and sound designer for film, television, and podcasts. In this episode Moss discusses her childhood in Hong Kong, moving back to England, and her search for belonging—at the intersection of East and West—through her music.

With April, her most recent album, she attempts to tackle this penultimate question of identity and belonging with songs in English and Cantonese. While her first two albums, First Love (2009) and Virtue (2011), were taken with very English concepts such as Albion and the poetry of William Blake, here, her themes are Eastern preoccupations—with health and their connection to our internal organs in “Your Hallucinations.” To the moon goddess in “Chang E”—who in Chinese folklore was banished there with her rabbit companion. Buzz Aldrin had famously remarked, “Ok we’ll look out for the Bunny girl” during the historic 1969 moon landings. You also hear instruments such as the gamelan (traditional, Indonesian percussions) and the bamboo organ (a giant, church organ that has it’s own annual festival in the Philippines).

April was written four years ago in New York, after a British Council residency to China and a trip back to Hong Kong. Having felt that she had transcended her life in the small, former British colony, Moss was surprised that after her trip she felt the pull to return there. As soon as the album was recorded, Moss moved to Hong Kong. She made a life there with her partner and then became a mother. In 2019, after pro-democracy protests broke out, followed by the Chinese government crackdown, they made the difficult decision to leave.

The songs and sounds in this episode are from a time before. It transports us to postcard-perfect destinations that aren’t as easy to access as a result of political upheavals and/or the pandemic. And while questions of Asian identity are particularly pertinent during AAPI Heritage month, the notions of belonging explored are pretty universal. To celebrate AAPI, we will also drop a bonus episode later this month featuring Thao Nguyen of Thao & the Get Down Stay Down.

A new Under the Radar episode is released on the second Thursday of every month. And two weeks later a shorter 10-15min episode will act as a companion piece and discuss the making of the earlier episode. Listeners will get a chance to listen to tape that might not have made the earlier cut and other behind-the-scenes morsels. There will be opportunities in future episodes to invite fans on the mini episodes. You can also write in to the show at celine.teoblockey@undertheradarmag.com to share your thoughts. And we might read them out.

Follow us on Apple Podcasts and rate the show. You can also listen to us on Spotify and podcast apps such as Podchaser.

Each monthly episode of Under the Radar features an interview with a different musician conducted by host and producer Celine Teo-Blockey. Upcoming guests this season will include Julien Baker, Adrian Younge, James Yorkston, Sleaford Mods, London Grammar, and more.

Also check our season 2, episode 1, which is our interview with The Flaming Lips’ Wayne Coyne (plus listen to our bonus mini behind-the-scenes episode on The Flaming Lips).

On top of being available on all podcasting platforms the podcast also airs on WLUR, an NPR affiliate based in Lexington, VA (the city where Under the Radar is currently based). By Celine Teo-Blockey

Support Under the Radar on Patreon.

The Under the Radar Podcast returns today with season 2, starting with our interview with Wayne Coyne from The Flaming Lips. Upcoming guests this season will include Julien Baker, Emmy the Great, Adrian Younge, James Yorkston, Sleaford Mods, London Grammar, and more.

In between the band’s successful run of Space Bubble Concerts, Coyne took some time out and in this episode reveals how foundational the sense of play and love for art—that was a huge part of his childhood and upbringing in Oklahoma—has endured over the band’s 40 year career. As a father himself now, he also tries to foster the same for his young son, Bloom.

He discusses how the success of their best-loved songs—such as “She Don’t Use Jelly” (from 1993’s Transmissions from the Satellite Heart) and “Do You Realize??” (from 2003’s Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots)—impacted the band. And Coyne takes us behind the inspiration of their latest album American Head, where he reflects on how the drug culture of his and Steven Drozd’s youth tainted their American Dream.

A new Under the Radar episode is released on the second Thursday of every month. And two weeks later a shorter 10-15min episode will act as a companion piece and discuss the making of the earlier episode. Listeners will get a chance to listen to tape that might not have made the earlier cut and other behind-the-scenes morsels. There will be opportunities in future episodes to invite fans on the mini episodes. You can also write in to the show at celine.undertheradarpod@gmail.com to share your thoughts. And we might read them out.

Follow us on Apple Podcasts and rate the show. You can also listen to us on Spotify and podcast apps such as Podchaser.

Each monthly episode of Under the Radar features an interview with a different musician conducted by host and producer Celine Teo-Blockey. On top of being available on all podcasting platforms the podcast also airs on WLUR, an NPR affiliate based in Lexington, VA (the city where Under the Radar is currently based).

Support Under the Radar on Patreon.

The Anchoress

Under the Radar Presents: “Why Not Both” Podcast Featuring The Anchoress

Mar 11, 2021

Every week, in partnership with Why Not Both podcast, we’ll be presenting new podcast episodes that explore how multiple passions inform the inspiring lives of musicians, writers, actors, and creatives.

Catherine Davies aka The Anchoress worked at the BBC for exactly one day before quitting and accepting funding for her masters and PhD in literature and queer theory. It was a bold choice and one that paid off, as her academic pursuits paved the way for her brilliant albums and production work with fellow artists, as well as her role as a touring member of Simple Minds. As an artist and a scholar, Davies champions the idea of “magpie-ing” which she defines as taking the shiniest bits from the world around you and shaping them into your own craft. Given the gorgeous constellation of work she has produced, it seems as though she may be onto something…

For updates, be sure to follow Why Not Both on Instagram and Twitter. For previous episodes, including Buzzy Lee, Icona Pop, and Mxmtoon, get clicking on our streaming options or join us on YouTube.

For more from The Anchoress, head to her Instagram and Twitter. Her new album The Art of Losing is out this Friday.

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Support Under the Radar on Patreon.

Support Why Not Both on Patreon.

Buzzy Lee

Under the Radar Presents: “Why Not Both” Podcast Featuring Buzzy Lee

Mar 03, 2021

Every week, in partnership with Why Not Both podcast, we’ll be presenting new podcast episodes that explore how multiple passions inform the inspiring lives of musicians, writers, actors, and creatives.

During our interview, musician and writer Sasha Spielberg aka Buzzy Lee posed the question, “would you rather be doing well and no one knows or appear to be thriving to everyone else but know that you’re actually not doing well?” It’s certainly a valuable quandary not only for artists but for everyone navigating this curious time where we are our own most captive audience. We appreciate that at least in Buzzy’s world, elaborate baked goods, beautiful songs, and the art of being a cozy girl can live alongside the occasional existential ennui.

For updates, be sure to follow Why Not Both on Instagram and Twitter. For previous episodes, including Ioanna Gika, AURORA, and White Sea, get clicking on our streaming options or join us on YouTube.

For more from Buzzy Lee, join up with her on Instagram and Twitter. Her new album Spoiled Love is out now. You can also grab her previous EP Facepaint via Bandcamp.

Support Under the Radar on Patreon.

Support Why Not Both on Patreon.

Joshua Henry

Under the Radar Presents: “Why Not Both” Podcast Featuring Joshua Henry

Feb 24, 2021

Every week, in partnership with Why Not Both podcast, we’ll be presenting new podcast episodes that explore how multiple passions inform the inspiring lives of musicians, writers, actors, and creatives.

Joshua Henry may be best known for his Tony nominated roles on Broadway but this year, he had the opportunity to finally slow down and create his own original music. After the initial shock of not being on stage every night wore off, Henry found himself getting involved with DoSomething, a youth led organization dedicated to bettering the world through small every day actions, and delved into the joy of being a stay at home dad. We love his take on being a modern-day Renaissance man that embraces empathy and exploration in all his creative endeavors.

For updates, be sure to follow Why Not Both on Instagram and Twitter. For previous episodes, including Parson James, Andre Henry, and Sondre Lerche, hit up our wealth of streaming options or join us at YouTube.

Get to know Henry by stopping by his Instagram and Twitter. His debut EP Guarantee is out March 4. In the meanwhile, enjoy his soulful new single, “Stand Up.”

Support Under the Radar on Patreon.

Support Why Not Both on Patreon.

Shamir

Under the Radar Presents: “Why Not Both” Podcast Featuring Shamir

Feb 17, 2021

Every week, in partnership with Why Not Both podcast, we’ll be presenting new podcast episodes that explore how multiple passions inform the inspiring lives of musicians, writers, actors, and creatives.

This year, we’ve all had to embrace the idea of doing less with more and being creative with what we have at hand. Few people managed to do it better than Shamir with the release of his self-titled album and the growing collection of titles on his label Accidental Pop Star. In a year of magical thinking, Shamir certainly made the best of a closet full of fabulous clothes and an open heart to the many forms creativity may take.

For updates, be sure to follow Why Not Both on Instagram and Twitter. For previous episodes, including Tegan and Sara, Deerhoof, and Sad13, strut over to our streaming options, or join us on YouTube.

For more from Shamir, be sure to hit him up on Instagram and Twitter. His new self-titled album is out now. Be sure to also wrap your ears around his moody cover of Billie Eilish’s “Ocean Eyes” when it comes out later this month.

Support Under the Radar on Patreon.

Support Why Not Both on Patreon.