“I can’t help it if I’m lucky” Although there weren’t any real musicians in my family music seemed to be around us all the time via radios and record players. I was 10 years old at the big bang of Rock N Roll. In 1955 Chuck Berry’s “Maybellene” captured me like nothing else followed by Little Richard, Buddy Holly, The Everly Brothers and Bo Diddley. I had an older brother and sister with Sinatra and Brubeck LPs to round out my listening. Soon Elvis was in the army Little Richard the ministry and Chuck was in the slammer taking the initial energy out of rock and roll. I was lured by The Kingston Trio to folk music. I began working at Jimmy Thiem’s record Shop above The Ambassador Theatre on Fayetteville St. and later on Hargett St in Raleigh. This was the dawn of the Hi Fi era and the introduction of stereo LPs. Truly I was “a kid in a candy store”. I began discovering the wealth of information on the back of these albums. Liner notes yielded bios, accompanying musicians, song sources, arrangers, producers, photographers etc. I began to seek out other records based on what I had gleaned from liner notes, a quest that continues today.
O K So that’s the Liner Notes part. What’s with Sidetrack?
Again with the luck.While away at schools, I had experienced music in some coffeehouses and jazz clubs in Boston, New York and Washington. As a freshman at N.C. State where I made some new friends in the Design School, they along with my local folkie friends decided we would build ourselves a coffeehouse, The Sidetrack at West and Hargett Streets. It lasted about 14 months but gave me first hand experience booking professional musicians and more insights into the music business.
I eventually settled on a career as commercial photographer. In that field even though I’ve pursued different specialities, I have always photographed musicians and guitars especially old ones. This love of music is part of the “glue” of my life a sort of mystery that can never be solved.
So Sidetrack Liner Notes podcasts are conversations with inmates that all have the same affliction , the love of and desire to know more about music, musicians and instruments and everything that contributes to it’s enjoyment.