interview Archive

Soul Stalwart: Sidney Barnes (Part 4)

Continued from Part Three… Barnes went on the road with Deniece Williams, too, and sang the male part of the Williams-Johnny Mathis duet, “Too Much, Too Little, Too Late.” Initially, he did his part from backstage, but headliner Lou Rawls insisted he come out and sing at center stage with Williams. “Plus,” Rawls told him,

Soul Stalwart: Sidney Barnes (Part 3)

Continued from Part Two… Jackson got a deal that saw him relocating briefly to London, so he and Barnes parted ways. Around that time Barnes got a call from George Clinton, then with Golden World Records in Detroit. “I was missing working with him and he was missing working with me,” Barnes says. “We were

Soul Stalwart: Sidney Barnes (Part 2)

Continued from Part One… The group with Barnes and Feemster cut a demo recording “I spent $10 to make it,” Barnes says. He played it for one of the members of Little Anthony’s group, who loved it. They rehearsed with Anthony, and were heard by talent scout William Parker. Parker got the group an audition

Soul Stalwart: Sidney Barnes (Part 1)

Sidney Barnes’ early recordings and songwriting efforts are prized by aficionados of Northern soul. But that music represents only a fraction of his massive body of work. Barnes has had a career spanning more than five decades, and he’s worked extensively in a dizzying variety of genres: doo-wop, soul, rhythm and blues, blues, jazz, funk,

Hendersonville Chamber Music

Hendersonville Chamber Music got its start about 10-12 years ago; the non-profit group is an offshoot of the Swannannoa Chamber Music Festival. From the beginning, events routinely drew 75 to 100 people, says the group’s director, Howard Bakken. But for many years the group kept a relatively low profile. “I’ve been in Hendersonville for years,”

Air Supply: Still in Love

Air Supply was one of the biggest-selling acts of the 1980s. With a long string of smash hits – a staggering ten consecutive Top 40 singles – the Australia-based band satisfied the listening public’s craving for tuneful, romantic pop. And when the duo of Graham Russell (guitar, vocals and songwriting) and lead singer Russell Hitchcock

Muscle Shoals Has Got the Swampers, Part Two

Continued from Part One… Several locales across America each had their own collective of top session musicians. Nashville had a large and varied group of session cats. Los Angeles had the Wrecking Crew; Detroit had the Funk Brothers. And Memphis had both the Hi Rhythm Section and the crew at Stax; the latter included Booker

Muscle Shoals Has Got the Swampers, Part One

The Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section – also known as the Swampers – were important players in the development of American popular music in the 1960s and beyond. Their collectively seamless, almost telepathic musical quality helped create some of the most enduring music in rock, soul, country and other genres. Working first at northern Alabama’s FAME

Brian’s Songs

In an unprecedented burst of creativity, New York City musician Brian MacWilliams wrote some 300 songs in the space of just a few years. Midway through that streak, he was diagnosed with ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, often known as Lou Gehrig’s disease). But a community of friends and supporters – in New York, Asheville and

They Might Be Giants: Fans, Phones, Fun and Love

They Might Be Giants released their 20th album, I Like Fun, in January. The two-time Grammy-winning group from Brooklyn established its clever approach to rock ‘n’ roll long ago, as showcased on hits like “Istanbul (Not Constantinople),” “Boss of Me” (the theme from the TV series Malcolm in the Middle) and a highly popular sideline