During the 1950s Connie Converse lived in New York City writing and singing thoughtful, emotional, smart, witty, personal songs. She accompanied herself on guitar, a "singer/songwriter" before that term or style existed. The music industry of her day couldn't pigeonhole her, and didn't welcome her. Discouraged, Connie left New York in 1960, and in 1974 she wrote a series of farewell letters to her friends and family, packed up her Volkswagen Bug and disappeared. She has not been heard from since. This special edition of WNYC's Spinning On Air with David Garland, airs many of Connie's songs for the first time, and tells her story with interviews, commentary, and readings from her letters, journals, and poetry.
The Hawaiian War Chant appears on nearly every album of Hawaiian and exotic music recorded in the 1950s and '60s. It's an up-tempo number, and so a lot of eccentric, excited arrangements of the tune were recorded. David Garland offers version after version of this ditty, which was actually inspired by an old love song.
David Garland reached deep into the archive, and found a cassette tape of the very first Spinning On Air show, broadcast August 2, 1987. Appropriately enough, it features music that makes prominent use of tape recorders as musical instruments and compositional tools. During this month we're celebrating 25 years of Spinning On Air by listening to a few shows from the program's archives.
David Garland presents some highlights from recent years, including Laura Marling, Sufjan Stevens, Antony and the Johnsons, Dirty Projectors, Michael Gira, Diane Cluck, The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger, and others-- even a portion of Christian Marclay's on-air improvisation on multiple turntables from November, 1987.