Tag Archives: radio

Back to the Music! Rock, Soul, and Optimism for Your February

Welcome back! First, a BIG thank you to our first few donors – you’re making my vision of a New England community radio station come true.

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This week covers a lot of ground – Laura Nyro to Don Varner and everything in between. Plus, we’ll keep talking about the explorer mindset and why optimism is so important today. Visit rfne.orfg for archived episodes, the podcast, merchandise, and more!

Want just the podcast? Click here for the 4 minute Marot Memo.

Bowie, Memphis Blues, and the Marot Memo

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My my, this is starting to sound like a ‘real’ radio show! Great rock and soul, old and new, plus news from around New England, This Week in History (with some special rock and soul birthdays) and a Marot Memo. (But mostly, it’s good music).

Want some ‘real’ cool Radio Free New England Schwag? Click here for t-shirts, mugs, hoodies, and more.

Marot Memo: In Sickness and in Health

When we’re sick, we’re not at our best. Chris tries to apply Stoic thinking to illness and our life struggles. 

This feed is for the Marot Memo, interviews, features, and rights-cleared music. For the full show, including an hour of rock & soul, check out this link.

You can also subscribe to receive the Marot Memo/features version in any one of nine podcast apps, including iTunes, Google Play, and Spotify by clicking here. You can also make a donation to support the podcast and our future expansion to a 24/7 community radio station for New England.

January Sinus Problems = Blog Post!

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Unfortunately, the only radio my voice could pull off this week is either a “classic rock that rocks” liner or an episode of pillow talk. While I’m on the road to recovery, check out this essay about AM radio when I was a teenager! There are also links to several archived episodes for your listening pleasure. See you next week!

Chris’s Radio Story: Radio, Someone Still Loves You.

Ever since I was a kid, I felt there was something magical about great music and an interesting personality coming through the radio. I listened intently to our local AM station – WILI – to my Grandpa’s reel-to-reel recordings from Armed Forces Radio, and devoured the records, 8 tracks, and CDs he and my Dad both had – everything from Elvis to Steely Dan. 

On my quest for great Rock ’n’ Roll, I heard about the legendary DJs who played those records on the radio – Wolfman Jack, Cousin Brucie, Alan Freed, Dan Ingraham. I figured I’d try my hand a picking music and talking between tracks – recording from the speakers of one cassette player to another – I must have been in 5th grade, my voice still in its prepubescent high. 

By 8th grade, I was burning out those tapes. I told everyone I knew about DJing, annoyingly sang along with all the jingles riding in the car, and most everyone I knew wondered about he kid listening to Fat Domino instead of Montell Jordan.

Mr. Hutson, my 8th grade tech ed teacher, set up a tour of that local AM station – WILI – and I was in Heaven. Thinking about it now, I can see the station the way I saw it then. I met the morning show host, Wayno, of Wakin’ up with Wayne, saw how the news was produced, and met some of the management. At the end of the tour, Colin Rice, the vice president, and son of WILI’s founder, Herb Rice, fielded questions from me about life on the air. At the end, to my utter glee, he offered me an internship! I learned how to use the boards, cue up 45s and cds, and over time, hosted my own oldies show – called Rock ’n’ Roll Returns. That turned out to be my first paying job. Every Saturday, I played the music I love – Four Tops, Supremes, Beatles, anything with that Rock ’n’ Soul feel. Throughout high school, I covered news shifts, learned how to cut tape, read the Community Calendar and commercials, and covered afternoon drive time and weekend shifts when the usual DJs were on vacation. 

Then came graduation. I was headed to Holy Cross in the fall so my time at ILI was up. I also worried that being an impartial newsman might stunt a growing ambition I had – politics. I let that ambition get the best of me and though I hosted a radio show in college an wrote for the newspaper, I let those passions fade, sure I was chasing something better. Over a decade and a law degree later, I’m not always convinced I was right. 

Nonetheless, the internet breathes new life into a multitude of hobbies and passion projects and I’m glad to say it’s brought me back to mine. In 2012, after Bridget knowingly gave me a vintage AM radio for Christmas, I got to work and Radio Free New England was born.First, as a talk only set of commentaries and interviews until it evolved into its current form –a music show in the spirit of that old, local, and full service station, WILI. Every week, you’ll hear a mix of rock and soul, a generous helping of music history, interviews with musicians, and New England events and culture, because radio, like people, is best when it’s rooted in a place. 

Please come with me every Sunday and immerse yourself in rock and soul from the classics to new artists who keep the flame alive. Along the way, we’l explore the world around us – the people, culture, and history that makes us who we are. 

RFNE Classics

If you don’t know where to start, give a listen to these three RNFE Classics:

Where to Find RFNE

RFNE S1 Ep 15: Rare Soul, New Soul, and Great Oldies for the New Year

https://www.mixcloud.com/RFNE/radio-free-new-england-s1-ep-15-rare-soul-new-soul-and-great-oldies-for-the-new-year/

Click here for the latest episode!

We’ve got a set of great music for you, from established favorites like Marvin Gaye and Fats Domino, all the way through Nathaniel Rateliff and Seattle Soul Band The True Loves.

The True Loves are an all instrumental band, with an album released in 2017 and a single in 2018. They’re a fun band to cook to, dance to, or to just close your eyes and listen. You can find out more about them on their site at truelovesband.com.

In the episode, I also mention Stax Records. They were a tremendous Soul powerhouse from the mid sixties through the seventies. Here’s a Memphis Rock and Soul Museum site put out by the Smithsonian for you to learn more (ie: Internet rabbit hole the heck out of this great music).

On a final note, it’s been a great 2018 getting back into radio/podcasting. Thanks for your support and for listening. I’ll have some big announcements, and will be looking for your continued support, in 2019!

Happy New Year!

RFNE Christmas Special

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Merry Christmas Everyone! Please enjoy this selection of soul, Motown, and classic Christmas songs as we head into the New Year. I hope you’ll be celebrating with friends and family. Once the festivities are over, I’ll be working hard on Radio Free New England, making some updates, and preparing some exciting additions to RFNE for 2019.

RFNE S1 Ep13 Gone Too Soon: Remembering Henry

This week marks the sad loss of Henry, our much-loved Border Collie. You’ll hear stories about his life, and music from artists who also left us too soon – from Otis Redding to Sharon Jones and Buddy Holly.

Share your memories and pet stories to chris@rfne.org. I’ll read your email on air, or play your recorded message (it’s easy! Record a voice memo on your phone, share it via email, and it’ll attach when we send it to me). Or, call 207-536-8997 and leave your thoughts via voicemail.