A podcast that takes you just off rock's beaten path


Episode 3
Joe Meek and Del Shannon

November 20, 2018

As the 1960s dawned, rock and roll's old guard was either in the Army, in jail, disgraced, irrelevant, or dead. The ensuing vacuum attracted soulless corporate suits whose sappy records threatened to strangle the young genre forever. Three years before the Beatles exploded, there was no guarantee that rock and roll would survive.

There were still artists, though, who endeavored to make music that was heartfelt and exciting; and on this episode of Detours, we're profiling two of them. Joe's Meek's hit production "Telstar" (performed by the Tornados) and Del Shannon's classic "Runaway" weren't just insanely catchy; they also took chances with futuristic instrumental sounds and burst with a sleek excitement that bucked then-current commercial trends.
Joe and Del were both rewarded for the chances they took. Their songs captured the zeitgeist and took over the charts during this potentially treacherous period.

Despite never meeting and living on opposite sides of the Atlantic ocean, Joe's and Del's careers followed comparable paths. They struggled to recapture the glory of their biggest hits; and they lives ended in tragic circumstances that were eerily similar. But their best songs helped keep pop music exciting until a new generation of musicians could pick up the torch and keep running with it.

Episode 2
Elvis: The Lost Years

September 29, 2018

Elvis Presley spent the 1960s in the public eye as one of Hollywood's most bankable leading men. But he became a marginal figure in the music world, recording fluffy soundtrack albums while the Beatles and Bob Dylan - Elvis fans all of them - blew open our conception of what music could be. By the time of his 1968 "Comeback Special", he'd missed out on years of musical innovations.

How did Elvis go from being the world's biggest recording star to a famous but musically irrelevant sideshow? In Elvis: The Lost Years, we examine how greed and apathy left a frustrating seven-year hole in the King's musical legacy.

Episode 1
​Buffalo Springfield: Fractured From the Start, Influential to the End

September 6, 2018

If you know about Buffalo Springfield, it's likely from their only Top 40 hit, 1966's "For What It's Worth" (aka "Stop, Hey, What's That Sound"). Under the radar, though, Buffalo Springfield released three fascinating albums and produced at least a dozen songs that rank with anything made in the late 1960s. Even more significantly, Buffalo Springfield was a training ground for three of the best singers and songwriters of their era, each of whose distinct styles had an oversized influence on popular music in the 1970s.
Join me as I explore Buffalo Springfield's unlikely formation, their brief, intensely creative glory years, and the breakup that was inevitable from the moment the members got together. I also take you through the band members' later adventures, as well as their continually frustrated attempts to get back together and recapture their late-1960s magic.