Air Check

Air Check is a brand new show from KRCC highlighting great music from the Pikes Peak region and beyond. If you’ve ever been to KRCC and seen the 20,000 CDs in our filing cabinets, and the 20,000 records in our vinyl vault, then you know that we are serious about music.

Think of Air Check as a showcase for all the incredible music that lives at KRCC. We’ll introduce you to things you may have missed, take a closer look at genres and artists we think you’ll love, and invite local and touring musicians into the studio for exclusive interviews and in-studio performances.

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

If you’ve spent any time in the Broadmoor neighborhood of Colorado Springs, you’ve probably heard a chorus of musical chimes float down Cheyenne Mountain to the valley below.

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

On this episode of Air Check, three more favorite songs from Jeff, Jake and Vicky, a talk with the Denver-based band the Flobots about their musical mission, we have a listen to the swan songs of I Sank Molly Brown during their last live performance as a band at Right Heel Studios, Jake and Jeff investigate the musical history of the Will Rogers Shrine on the side of Cheyenne Mountain, and three must-see concert events of the summer/fall music season. 

https://www.seracahoone.com/

Sera Cahoone grew up in Colorado, but has called Seattle home for the better part of two decades. She made a name for herself as a drummer in the band, Band of Horses, and then turned to her own solo career, releasing several albums, including two on Seattle-based Sub Pop records. 

The Youthful Nothings, via Facebook

The stages of a rock 'n' roll career can include: transcending suburban boredom, landing your first paying gig, releasing your debut record, long months on tour, a band break-up or two, periods of self doubt, and, eventually, looking back fondly on your years spent in beloved local bands, while also wondering why you didn't listen to your musician father when he told you it was going to be a hard road.

https://www.seracahoone.com/

This month on Air Check, Sub Pop alumna Sera Cahoone hangs out with Vicky and performs a couple of songs, John Bueno from Pueblo’s Pulp magazine chats with The Brightest Quasar over a cup of coffee, local producer Bill Douglass talks about working with Smashing Pumpkins front man Billy Corgan, and Hannah Fleming explores the many stages of a rock and roll career with Chuck Snow and the Youthful Nothings. 

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

Handbells have been around for centuries. Originally invented for church bell tower players to practice their songs, they took on a life of their own in handbell ensembles, where groups of musicians play carefully choreographed arrangements on the tuned bells. For this story from the latest episode of Air Check, 91.5 KRCC’s Vicky Gregor and Jake Brownell visited a local handbell group to learn more about the music.

Beth J. Harpaz / AP Photo

 

Colorado Springs resident Craig Carnick had a front row seat to one of the great eras in American music. Back in the 1960s, he worked the night shift as a recording engineer at Motown Studios in Detroit, Michigan.

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

April's episode of Air Check announces NPR's Tiny Desk Series move to Colorado Springs--just kidding. But it does bring Colorado Springs musician and Alex Koshak back from a tour with Esme Patterson, where they performed at the real Tiny Desk in NPR's headquarters in Washington D.C. John Craigie, modern-day troubadour, drops in to play a few songs from his new album No Rain, No Rose; Craig Carnick tells the story of Motown Studios where he worked the night shift as a recording engineer in the 1960s; and the Bells of St. Vrain share the art of handbell performance.  

Flux Capacitor Facebook Page

In the last 6 months, Colorado Springs said goodbye to several beloved DIY spaces.

Larry Hulst / Courtesy Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center

Photographer Larry Hulst, whose photographs of rock and roll icons are currently on display at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, never imagined that his pictures would one day be hanging in an art museum.

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

Grammy-nominated David Bromberg took a 22-year hiatus from music, went to violin-making school, and returned to tell the tale. 

heartshapedmusic.org

Ryan Flores, known for his solo classical guitar, didn't actually play one until he was 21 years old. His first guitar was a large, hundred dollar "thick-neck guitar" which was not only difficult to play but "showed all my mistakes," he says. 

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

On this episode of Air Check, multi-talented local musician Ryan Flores reflects on his life as a working artist; author LeAnna DeAngelo tells the story of the first performance at Red Rocks; the legendary David Bromberg drops by to play a few tunes; and our very own Vicky Gregor takes a trip down memory lane with a jar of ticket stubs dating all the way back to the mid-80s.

Album Art

Mike Doughty gained his musical fame in the 1990's with the group Soul Coughing.  In this segment of Air Check, Doughty talks about his music, poetry, and addictions with 91.5 KRCC's Jeff Bieri.  Mike's new solo release is called The Heart Watches While the Brain Burns, and his most recent memoir is titled The Book of Drugs.

Jeff Bieri / 91.5 KRCC

On this episode of Air Check, Mike Doughty talks getting sober and going solo after Soul Coughing, Glen Phillips of Toad the Wet Sprocket plays some songs from his new record, Bill Forman shares some stories from his long career as a music critic, and we remember two towering musical figures that we lost in the last month.  

Cheap Perfume Brings Feminist Punk to Colorado Springs

Nov 22, 2016
Cheap Perfume

Local band Cheap Perfume makes urgent music for turbulent times. The group's sound is fast and loud, at turns raging and satirical -- sometimes both at the same time. In their music, they tackle topics at the forefront of our nation's political debate right now, including racism, misogyny, the patriarchy, and even President-elect Donald J. Trump. 

91.5 KRCC

As the 9am bell rings at Chavez Huerta Preparatory Academy - a charter school on Pueblo's west side - kids make their way between small classroom buildings scattered about the campus. In a little room in one of those buildings, a handful of students tune up for their morning music class.

91.5 KRCC

On this episode of Air Check we dive into the local punk music scene with the local group Cheap Perfume,  Vicky hosts the Denver based band Paper Bird for an in studio performance and interview, Jake heads to the Chavez Huerta Preparatory Academy in Pueblo to uncover the makings of mariachi music, and Mike Love of the Beach Boys talks with Vicky about lyrics on demand and meditating with the Beatles and Maharishi. All that, AND three of our favorite new songs. 

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

In a nondescript gymnasium behind Immanuel Lutheran Church in Colorado Springs, there lives an incredible instrument. It's affectionately known as the "Mighty Kremer Wonder Organ," or "Kremer Opus One," and it's the largest theater pipe organ in Colorado.

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

C.J. Boyd is a man on the move.

For the last eight years, the bassist has been on permanent tour--living out of an old ambulance converted to run on veggie oil, playing night after night in coffee shops, bars, art spaces, punk houses, and just about every other imaginable venue. And that's just how he likes it.

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

On Episode 8 of Air Check, Jake Brownell meets a group of theater pipe organ enthusiasts working to keep the instrument alive, Jeff Bieri speaks with professor of musicology Ryan Banagale about the Billy Joel Conference at Colorado College, we visit with CJ Boyd who passed through Colorado Springs recently on his never-ending tour, and Vicky Gregor hosts the Fort Collins indie-folk group SHEL for an interview and  performance.

Brian Kwan Photography / Courtesy Wayne Wilkinson

Wayne Wilkinson has played jazz guitar everywhere from the White House to Carnegie Hall, and has even shared the stage with noted tenor saxophonist, former president Bill Clinton. He was a guitarist in the Air Force Falconaires and Airmen of Note bands, and now records and performs both as a soloist and with a wide array of collaborators. He lives in Colorado Springs, and is a fixture in the local jazz scene.

We've got Guilty Pleasure Songs... Do You?

Sep 22, 2016

We've all got songs we blast in the privacy of our own homes but might not recommend to a friend, or even admit we like at all. Don't we?

In this piece from the latest episode of Air Check, we re-imagine our usual "musical roundtable" segment. Instead of sharing recent favorites, Vicky, Jake and Jeff each share a song that they'd rather you didn't know they enjoy...

BONUS: We're asking for you, the listener, to share your guilty pleasures with us. Leave a message on the Air Check voicemail, and tell us about song you love in private and why you feel guilty about it. Your message could be featured on an upcoming episode of Air Check! The number to call is 719-428-5722

Jake Brownell / KRCC

It's no secret that record stores have struggled to survive in the digital age. In the last decade, we've seen music retail giants like Tower Records and Sam Goody file for bankruptcy and watched as the internet has rendered CDs virtually obsolete. For those running record stores, there has been a lot to adjust to. 

Associated Press / AP

Labor Day weekend has come and gone, and now it's back to work.

For everyone out there who's back at the office in body, but not in spirit, we bring you a selection of songs about work from the notoriously labor-averse genres of punk and new wave.

Jake Brownell

On Episode 7 of Air Check, Portland band Ages and Ages drops by for an interview and in-studio performance, Bob Slade, host of KRCC’s Retro Fix, shares some of his favorite songs about work in honor of labor day, we discuss the ever-changing industry of music retail with Judy Negley and Shawn Mayo of Independent Records, Dick Fairley interviews local jazz guitarist, Wayne Wilkinson, and we cop to some guilty pleasure songs.

Bar/None Records

Local band Eros and the Eschaton are doing big things in the Colorado Springs music scene. Their brand of shoegazy indie rock has impressed fans, record label execs, and music writers around the country, and they've achieved a degree of critical and commercial success rarely seen by bands in the Pikes Peak Region. 

Jason Cipriani / Flickr / Creative Commons

It should come as no surprise to music fans in the Pikes Peak region to hear that Pueblo is home to some fantastic musicians. For evidence, one need look no further than the Haunted Windchimes -- one of southern Colorado's most beloved local groups -- and the various side projects of its members. But there's much more music to appreciate in the Steel City. 

On this episode of Air Check: 

Vicky, Jeff, and Jake share their favorite new releases of the last month; Local band Eros and the Eschaton preview some tracks from their new album, Weight of Matter; Pueblo Pulp music writer John Bueno shares some of his favorite bands from the Steel City; Musician Ed Parsons schools us on the history of Reggae; And electronic producer Tor talks sampling and songwriting. 

New Philadelphia Times, OH, July 18th, 1963 via Newspapers.com

Fifty three years ago this week, a 21-year-old rock-and-roll musician named Ulysses Baxter made history in Colorado Springs. On hands and knees, with a wooden salad spoon affixed to his nose, he ascended Pikes Peak--pushing a peanut the entire way.

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