Sound Opinions

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Sound Opinions is the World's only rock and roll talkshow. Hosted by Jim DeRogatis of WBEZ and Greg Kot of the Chicago Tribune. Each week Jim and Greg bring you the latest music news and reviews. Plus tune in to hear exclusive interviews and performances. Sound Opinions is a production of WBEZ Chicago and distributed by PRX. Updated weekly.

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Take two nationally respected rock critics, the latest music news, personal commentary, and exclusive interviews and performances, add a huge pile of records old and new, and the result is Sound Opinions - the world's only rock and roll talk show.
🇬🇧 English
last modified
2019-11-15 21:44
last episode published
2019-11-15 00:00
publication frequency
7.0 days
WBEZ Chicago author   owner  
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Date Thumb Title & Description Contributors

#729 Buried Treasures & Bobby Rush

As we all settle in for the season, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot figure Sound Opinions listeners are ready for a playlist refresh. This week, they dip into the wealth of great new music beyond the FM dial and play you some Buried Treasures. These a...
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#728 Songs About the Radio & Opinions on Michael Kiwanuka

Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot both fondly remember discovering new bands on their FM dials; and though there are many ways find new music, there's still a bit of magic to hearing a new favorite over the airwaves. To honor that legacy, Jim and Greg s...
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#727 Janis Joplin, Opinions on Kanye West & Neil Young and Crazy Horse

Janis Joplin was known for her iconic singing voice, gregarious image and refusal to conform. But behind her chill, blues mama persona was an intellectual, intentional artist. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot discuss the life and career of Janis Joplin...
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#726 Bands in Costume, Opinions on Battles & Farewell to Music Critic Nick Tosches

Rock and roll has never been purely about the music. The image a band puts forward can be almost as important as their songs. Some bands take it an extra step and make theatrical costumes an integral part of their act. In honor of Halloween, hosts Jim ...
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#725 The Rolling Stones' Exile on Main St.

Though originally panned by many critics, the Rolling Stones' 1972 album Exile on Main St. is now considered a masterpiece. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot serve up a classic album dissection for the deeply influential recording.
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#724 Songs We Love By Bands We Don't, Opinions on Nick Cave & Farewell to Ginger Baker & Kim Shattuck

Have you ever listened to a song and loved it, only to find out it’s by an artist you can’t stand? Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot will explore the concept of great songs by horrible artists and share a few of their favorites. Plus they'll review Ghos...
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#723 Family Bands & Opinions on Wilco

The family that plays together, stays together, right? If you‘ve ever traveled in a van with your mother, father, sister or brother, you know it's not that easy. From Sister Sledge to The Cowsills, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share some of the gre...
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#722 Fugazi's Repeater, Opinions on Psychedelic Country Artist Sturgill Simpson

Washington D.C. post-punk band Fugazi reshaped the definition of punk in America. Their 1990 debut album, Repeater, connected with a generation and eventually sold more than a million copies. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot talk with founding member I...
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#721 Opinions on Tool, Lana Del Rey & More, Farewell to Ric Ocasek & Daniel Johnston

With an influx of new music, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot decide it's time for a review roundup. They share their opinions on records by Tool, Lana Del Rey, Common and more. They also pay tribute to the late Cars' frontman Ric Ocasek and solo artis...
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#720 Buried Treasures & Peter Lewis of Moby Grape

Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot are always on the lookout for buried treasures - newly released music that is flying underneath the critical and commercial radar. They're back this week with some exciting new songs. Jim and Greg also talk with a membe...
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#719 James Alexander of the Bar-Kays & Favorite Bass Lines

This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot are joined by legendary funk and R&B bassist James Alexander of the Bar-Kays. They discuss his early days as a pivotal part of the Stax Records house band in Memphis and the enduring legacy of 1971's Shaf...
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#718 Whitney & Songs About Quitting Work

While critical and commercially successful “soft rock” music is rare in 2019, the Chicago band Whitney found a way to make it sound fresh and indie. This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot talk with the two main members of the band about how they c...
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#717 Best Music Cameos & Opinions on Raphael Saadiq

Sometimes, all it takes for a song to go from good to great is the addition of a guest artist, whether it’s a rapper going in on the verse or a guitarist shredding a solo. This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share some of their favorite musical...
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#716 The Mountain Goats, Opinions on Sleater-Kinney & The Regrettes

Over the course of 17 albums, The Mountain Goats have gone from a super lo-fi solo project to a polished four piece combo. This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot are joined by the whole band for an exclusive performance and interview with songwrit...
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#715 The Legend of Robert Johnson

For decades, the myths surrounding Robert Johnson overshadowed his contributions as a singer, songwriter and guitarist. From the legend that he sold his soul to the devil at the crossroads to mystery surrounding his untimely death at age 27, the truths...
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#714 Why the Ramones Matter, Tommy Ramone & Opinions on Chance the Rapper

Back in the 1970s, punk was shorthand for a subculture that took pride in breaking the mainstream’s mold. And at the vanguard of punk rock was The Ramones. Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot explore the cultural contributions of the band, beyond the myth, with...
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#713 Australian Singer-Songwriter Julia Jacklin, Opinions on Blood Orange

While Australian singer-songwriter Julia Jacklin’s voice has a soft vibrato and sweet tone, her lyrics are laced with a dry sense of humor and unflinching honesty. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot talk to Julia about her new album, the pressure to appe...
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#712 Buried Treasures & Tasha

It's time again for hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot to share their latest buried treasures: recently released, under-the-radar albums you need to hear! They'll also chat with Chicago singer, songwriter and guitarist Tasha about her music, which champi...
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#711 Marvin Gaye's What's Going On & the Wah-Wah Pedal

This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot look back on Marvin Gaye's classic album What's Going On. They discuss the tracks, cultural climate and overarching themes of the 1971 album, many of which are more relevant than ever today.
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#710 Neil Young & Crazy Horse's Rust Never Sleeps on its 40th Anniversary, the Rickenbacker 12-String Guitar

Forty years later, Neil Young and Crazy Horse's masterpiece Rust Never Sleeps still captivates listeners and critics with its simple melodies, complex lyrics and punk-inspired sound. This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot discuss the album's impac...
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#709 Music That Made Me & the Universal Music Warehouse Fire

Most music lovers can point to a song that made them: perhaps one that helps define them, or just one of those songs that defines a time in their life. This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share some of the music that made them. They also talk w...
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#708 The Best Albums of 2019 So Far

So many great albums come out every year that hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot can’t wait until December to start ranking their favorites. This week, the Best Albums of 2019 So Far.
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#707 Roky Erickson, Dr. John & Jim DeRogatis on R. Kelly

Roky Erickson and his group the 13th Floor Elevators spread the psychedelic gospel in the heart of Texas in the 1960s and influenced groups like R.E.M. and ZZ Top. After a tumultuous life that included a long battle with schizophrenia, Roky died last m...
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#706 Mavis Staples

As a member of her family group The Staple Singers and as a solo artist, Mavis Staples has used her huge voice to power the Civil Rights Movement and inspire generations. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot revisit their intimate discussion of her life an...
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#705 Buried Treasures & Ex Hex

Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot are ready and raring to go with some new buried treasures: recent, under-the-radar albums that you need to hear. They also talk with the rock trio Ex Hex, led by Mary Timony, about their new record, plus the group gives...
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#704 De La Soul's 3 Feet High and Rising & Opinions on The National

In the digital age, most of us assume that every piece of music that ever was is available at the push of a button. But this week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot bring us a Classic Album Dissection of a recording that, despite its significance, is un...
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#703 Paisley Underground, The Shangri-Las' Leader of the Pack & Opinions on Tacocat

In early '80s Southern California, a new kind of music was brewing that blended the psychedelic sounds of the ‘60s with the modern day post-punk ethos. This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot reflect on the Paisley Underground movement. They’ll dis...
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#702 Sharon Van Etten & Opinions on Jamila Woods

Edgy folk-rocker Sharon Van Etten is busier than ever after quitting the music industry four years ago. Now she’s back and experimenting with new sounds, like the vintage synthesizer that lives in her New York City rehearsal space. Sharon joins hosts J...
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#701 Band Reunions, Opinions on Vampire Weekend

Summer is coming…and that means a slew of music festivals and arena concerts around the country. Many bands hit the road for reunion tours, often times without all their original members. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot explore whether or not it’s sac...
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#700 Sound Opinions in Space, Opinions on Lizzo & Emily King

For Sound Opinions' 700th episode, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot are taking the show to outer space! They'll share some of their favorite songs about space in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. Plus, Jim and Greg review Cuz...
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#699 Moby, Opinions on Nico Segal's Intellexual

Moby became the face of techno with the blockbuster success of his 1999 album Play. He’s since made several successful albums and put out his first memoir, Porcelain, in 2016. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot revisit their 2016 conversation with Moby i...
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#698 Buried Treasures, Rock Doctors, Opinions on Marvin Gaye

As music critics and connoisseurs, Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot always have new under-the-radar tracks that you need to hear! This week, they’ll share some of their latest buried treasures. They'll also check in as the Rock Doctors to give some musical a...
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#697 Shoegaze & Opinions on Priests

Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot dive into "Shoegaze." In the late '80s and early '90s, this sound developed in the U.K. and was typified by lots of guitar, atmosphere and noise. But while the height of Shoegaze only lasted a few years, its influence l...
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#696 True Crime Songs, Opinions on Jenny Lewis & Sara Romweber

There's a long tradition of blues and folk troubadours writing about subjects that are downright criminal. This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot talk about true crime, or at least allegedly true crimes, that have been immortalized in song. Plus, ...
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#695 Alternative Country Singer-Songwriter Sarah Shook & SXSW 2019

Sarah Shook is an artist expertly bridging the worlds of punk grime and honky tonk played on sawdust floors. But it's her smart, pithy lyrics about love that grip listeners and don't let go. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot chat with country singer-son...
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#694 The Best of Sound Opinions Live & Hal Blaine

Over the years, Sound Opinions has seen many great performances from the talented artists and bands that appeared. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share some of the biggest performances ever on the show, including artists like Wilco, Common and Cheap ...
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#693 Buried Treasures & Opinions on Chaka Khan & Solange

This week, Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot unearth some Buried Treasures, musical gems that you may not have heard, but certainly should. Plus, the hosts review the latest releases from soul legend Chaka Khan and singer Solange.
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#692 Classic Album Dissection of The Stooges' Fun House

In a Classic Album Dissection, Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot examine The Stooges' Fun House record from 1970. The album brought together garage rock, rhythm and blues and free jazz, setting a template for the punk revolution to come. Stooges guitarist Ron...
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#691 The Story of Blues Label Alligator Records & Conversation with Buddy Guy

This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot explore the history and legacy of the almost 50-year-old Chicago blues label, Alligator Records, with its founder Bruce Iglauer. They'll talk to him about his new book Bitten By the Blues: The Alligator Recor...
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#690 Songs About Writers, Opinions on Bob Mould & Sneaks

This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot explore literature’s influence on popular music and how famous scribes like Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde and more get name drops. They'll share some of their favorite songs about writers. They'll also review the ...
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#689 Walk This Way: The Story of Run-DMC's Collaboration With Aerosmith, Opinions on Emily King

Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot talk with author Geoff Edgers about his 2019 book Walk This Way: Run-DMC, Aerosmith, and the Song that Changed American Music Forever. They discuss how Run-DMC's 1986 collaboration with Aerosmith came about and its impa...
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#688 Weird Instruments of Rock, Opinions on Maggie Rogers & Sharon Van Etten

Forget about the guitar, bass, and drums. This week, Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot explore some of the weirder instruments of rock from the theremin to the ocarina to the cowbell. They'll also review new music from two singer-songwriters: the debut album ...
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#687 Buried Treasures & Chicago Soul Band The O'My's

Looking for some exciting new music to augment your 2019 playlist? Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share some of their latest buried treasures: favorite recent under-the-radar records that you need to hear! Plus, Jim and Greg are joined by the Chicago soul ...
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#686 Revolver Cover Artist and Bassist Klaus Voormann, The Artist vs. the Art

Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot sit down with artist and musician Klaus Voormann. Klaus shares his unique vantage point to rock and roll history: he designed the cover artwork for The Beatles’ album, Revolver, lived with George and Ringo and was a ses...
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#685 Great Starts - Songs With Iconic Beginnings

Sometimes songs make a strong, memorable statement from the very first note. This week, to start off the new year, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share songs with iconic starts.
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#684 Great Duets & Writer Malcolm Gladwell

There’s something about two performers, sometimes from different styles and points of view, coming together and creating a musical moment. This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share some of their favorite duets. They'll also interview author Mal...
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#683 Jim & Greg's 2018 Mixtapes & In Memoriam

Sound Opinions closes out 2018 with the year in song. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot present a mixtape of tracks that tell the story of the the past year. And we remember some of the many musicians who passed away in 2018.
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#682 Rush & Paying Tribute to Pete Shelley of the Buzzcocks

Famous for its instrumental virtuosity and heady, sci-fi influenced lyrics, the Canadian prog-rock trio Rush has amassed an obsessive cult following. Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of Rush join hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot to discuss the band's remarka...
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#681 Sound Opinions Holiday Spectacular

Whether you've been naughty or nice, Sound Opinions has a new sack full of holiday music for you. Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot welcome back record crate explorer and Christmas music aficionado Andy Cirzan for our annual Holiday Spectacular. This year, An...
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#680 The Best Albums of 2018

This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share their favorite albums of 2018. They also hear picks from Sound Opinions producers and listeners.
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