Friday, September 3, 2010

Homegrown Radio 9/3/10

It’s a real treat to bring Scotty Houston to Robert Frost’s Banjo as the September artist for our Homegrown Radio feature.  I’ve known Scotty since he moved west in the 1990s to play electric bass in Carrie Bradley’s band, 100 Watt Smile.  He’s a witty & down-to-earth guy who happens to be a fantastic musician—proficient not only on the bass, but also lap steel, guitar & baritone uke (see photo.)

Scotty has played in a number of bands in addition to 100 Watt Smile.  Most recently he was a member of Oakland’s The Mighty Lynch Pins, which disbanded not long ago.  Although Scott is currently without a band, a musician of his talents (especially a bass player!) won’t be so for long.  You can read more about Scotty Houston on his Robert Frost’s Banjo Musical Questions interview here.

In the meantime, we get to enjoy Scotty’s music as a soloist.  In fact, I should mention that Scotty gave me the idea for Homegrown Radio; on his Overjoyous blog, he posted a song a day during the month of May, & while I was enjoying those songs, I thought that home recordings could make a wonderful ongoing feature on Robert Frost’s Banjo.  You know the rest of the story—so let’s hear what Scotty has to say about his first song, “Next the Barometer:”

Thanks for hosting me on Homegrown Radio, John. I've been a fan of your blog for a long time and I've really enjoyed hearing Ray and Dani and Carrie over the summer.  They have been three of my favorite songwriters for the last 20+ years running so it has been a real treat to hear them.

Next The Barometer was recorded in May, and written in the Oceanic Hotel on Star Island last year during a storm last fall.  I picked this one because it's the most recent thing I have on hand, I've been working up some new songs for this month but so far my attempts at recording have been thwarted by technical difficulties.  The current status of my, um, home studio is documented in this photo: 

The room in the hotel was leaking from the ceiling and I had three or four coffee cups arranged on the floor collecting drips.  Weather and navigation.  I wondered where birds sheltered on such a tiny, craggy island.  Hope you like it.  I'll be back with a fresh song next week.

Thanks, Scotty!  Here’s the song:


  1. Great song, Thanks Scotty - and thanks John for introducing me to his music.

  2. This is nice. It's also the most "produced" of the offerings on Homegrown Radio so far, something I really appreciate. Unlike the previous files with the artists doing a rough draft into the mic, you really get to hear what the artist intended for the song in this file. The little bit of whistling in the breaks after the chorus is an almost winsome touch and adds to the charm of the song. Good work, Scotty, and good on you for introducing us to him, John!

  3. Hi Alan & Roy

    Alan: Thanks! Glad you liked it.

    Roy: So glad you liked it!--it's a lovely song & I agree Scotty did a nice job in the production. I'm not really with you on the comparison to earlier efforts, but certainly respect your opinion & am happy you liked Scotty's work.

  4. Definitely a timeless quality to this song; this will age well. Very accessible without being cheap.

  5. It's lovely and relaxing to listen to. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Thanks for the kind comments all, I'm very glad you enjoyed it.

  7. Hi Tomm, HKatz & Scotty

    Tomm: Yes, it has qualities from "another era," but in a contemporary way--a very good song.

    HKatz: Thanks! So glad you liked it.

    Scotty: Thanks for coming up with such a fine song!

  8. Fun to remember our time out on Star Island as I listen to your song and get ready to depart on Thursday. Nice stuff Scotty.

  9. Hi GC III: Thanks for stopping by!


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