Whirled Peas Comes Full Circle {Whirled Peas Café Radio}

Mondays 7a-9a

WPC Radio: Musical Comfort Food with a World of Spice

Spring has blown in with gale force this week. Quite a tumultuous week of wind and warmth after the frozen temps of last week. Jason has been making hay of the fortunate weather. Well, metaphoric hay, in any case. Jason’s day job is running a farm with his wife, Sarah of Jazz Buffet fame. Their farm is dedicated to sustainable agriculture applying organic practices. This week has them scrambling to get a hoop house up and functional with a little help from their friends. My help this week was to do a last minute fill-in for his show, Full Circle. What are friends for? And what a pleasure! Filling in for Jason gives me a chance to do a more energy infused drive time. I’m normally waking folks up in the morning rather than sending them home from work.

I always have a playlist or two in progress. So even as our show started out with some technical difficulties. BRP was on hand. I helped him switch the transmitter heat out put in the attic; he helped trouble-shoot at computer glitch that was not allowing me to access the audio from the KEXP sessions. I had had more KEXP sections on tap, but things happen. This is why I always have a back-up or three.

KEXP is one of my secret weapons. A trick of my trade. If I”m trying to play fresh content on the fly, it is my favorite go-to source. The advantages it gives are multiple including: 1) The artists are varied in genre, but all sensational in craft and sensibility, 2) KEXP has equipment that we could dream about combined with an excellent production staff, 3) Quite often their live studio versions are better than the CD/MP3 “official” releases of material, and 4) I don’t have to worry about a non-FCC sanctioned “wardrobe malfunction,” because it is produced for on-air radio consumption. My personal iGoogle page sports an app that feeds three or so free download songs of the day. I friend them on FaceBook. And many of these playlists selections are from their live studio sessions. KEXP is but one of my valued sources, one that is a total joy to share with you all.

Peas Out! Tune in Monday from 7a-9a for the regularly scheduled Whirl of Peas!

Man Trouble Hazmat Modine
The Sky Is Crying Elmore James
Crazy Baby Joan Osborne
Cat In A Dog Suit Belleruche

Huepaje Bomba Estéreo
Black Balloons The Kills

Longform The Dodos
Written In Reverse Spoon
Feelin’ Bomba Estéreo

Elysian Persuasion Ozomatli
Love Is Growth Taiyo Na
Clockwatching Belleruche
All Alone In an Empty House Lost In the Trees
Toxic Yael Naïm
Advice of the Bartenders to the Urban Cowboy Blues Ginn Sisters
Walk With Me Moby et al

It Feels Like Rain Shaun Murphy
Nomvula (After the Rain) Freshlyground
I Shall Be Released Bob Dylan
In My Pocket The Cat Empire
Rocket In My Pocket Little Feat
I Can’t Stand the Rain Lowell George


Isabella’s Half Circle


Isabella: Where Classical & Classic Meets Spiritual

Yesterday, Thursday, January 27, I subbed for Jason for 1 hour and then Noah Leverett subbed for Jason for the second hour. I can only vouch for my own stuff, and so I’m offering you this record of what I played. It was one of the most fun and relaxing experiences, and I got accolades from two friends of mine afterwards.

I led in with the Band because it sounded so southern, and it seemed like the best connection I had to Little Feat, that had just been played previously by Dave. Thank you so much to Rosie for working the board for me. I’ll be trained on the board February 19 and then won’t be so high maintenance for the others around the station to take care of. Thank you Lori for your enthusiasm and support, and for patiently welcoming me.


The Band, Up on Cripple Creek and The Night they Drove Old Dixie Down
Simon and Garfunkel, Scarborough Fair
Ali Farka Toure, Kadi, Kadi
Beau Soleil, Freemen’s Zydeco
Stevie Wonder, Master Blaster (Jammin’)
Bob Marley, Soul Almighty
Rishi Nitya Pragya, Om Namah Shivaya, Shivaya Namah Om
Joni Mitchell, For Free

Fleetwood Mac, Songbird
Beatles, Fixing a Hole
Bryan Bowers, Satisfied Mind
Allan Sherman, One Hippopotami

New show name (again)-A brief(?) history

With all the line-up changes at the station, I thought it proper to officially announce  the change in my show name.

When I (briefly) took over the Jazz Buffet in 2000, little did I know that I would still be here over 10 years later.

Shortly after joining WDBX, I got what would be my last full time job working for someone other than myself.  In the meantime, my wife Sarah took over the Buffet so that we could hold that spot.  When I resumed life among the self-employed (that took all of two months,) I knew I wanted my show back.

That was the easy part.

Little did I know how strong of a claim Sarah had staked to the show.  So, upon talking with our station manager, BRP, I decided to pick up another show.  BRP encouraged me to continue with the jazz format, which lasted  for a few months.  The name of my show became “Take the J Train.”  I slowly began introducing some of my rock into the mix, in addition to some politically and socially driven spoken word and lecture-type material by the likes of Howard Zinn and Greg Palast.  All apologies to one of the greatest American institutions, but I was realizing that a show featuring jazz just wasn’t for me.

Enter “Music For Activists,” inspired by a CD of the same name by my childhood friend, Kevin Casper, who was living in Topenga, CA at the time.  This incarnation continued for some years, and while I got a lot of positive feedback regarding the political nature of my show, I grew wary of the “preaching to the choir” feeling I got on a weekly basis.  This was coupled with the increasing demands on me from my growing family, which seriously impacted the amount of time I had to “produce” each show in advance, an obvious requirement of a show based in any way on current events.

Nonetheless, I kept the name.  Meanwhile, listeners wondered aloud to me why there wasn’t  more of an activist slant to the music.  Apparently, since I wasn’t playing Joan Baez, I wasn’t playing true “activist” music.

So I changed my name again, this time more subtly.  Now i would be “Music and Activists,” which I felt relieved a bit of the stress to play music FOR activists.  And besides, I like to think that all of the musicians I feature are activists, if not in the traditional sense, then in the sense that they are actively creating and influencing listeners.

This name lasted until now, when I feel that a change is once again in order to reflect my new activism–farming.

When I started at the station years ago, I was rather unsure of the career path I had (not) chosen for myself.  I was three years out of school with an English degree, the aforementioned family was growing, and all I really enjoyed was working outside.  So I started a landscaping business.  I was able to work really hard for most of the year, but there was a forced vacation waiting at the end of the season.  Kind of like teaching, which my mom always wanted me to do, but around the holidays when I wanted to spend more time with family and enjoy my cozy home.

Fast forward about 7 years. I found myself still landscaping, but much of the commercial and new construction work on which I had depended started to wain.  We had purchased an old farmhouse (1893) and five acres of land in rural Union Co. in 2005.  Our modest garden was growing, and I had many visions of the homestead that would feed us, literally and spiritually.

Then i found a book that would change the course of my life.  It was called,”The Botany Of Desire,” by Michael Pollan, and it gave me a whole new perspective on plants.  I began to really think about growing food and the positive impact it had on my life.  This led me to another book of his, called “The Omnivore’s Dilemma,”  which focused more on the environmental advantages of local food, and called into question the serious implications of continuing on the same path of ecological destruction through our ag practices.

Within months, Sarah and I began discussing a career change.  Later that year, we formed Frontwards Farm, and began growing food for other folks.  This past summer we began marketing through CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), in which members buy into the farm for the season, and receive regular deliveries of produce.  Not only has this led to many new friends and a real connection to them, but it has given us a way to sustain our farm financially while competing with large farms around the world that rely on volume and mass transportation to deliver their food at a very competitive price.

So,what exactly does this have to do with WDBX.  Like many DJs, who I am is who you get on the air.  While I have considered on air monikers and other ideas to “conceal” myself, I have always decided to just be myself.  And this new name is very much about who I am.

The name is “Full Circle,” and it is meant to celebrate not only the days and seasons of nature, but the cyclical elements of all of our lives, elements which I fear are being lost in a wave of technology and a seemingly global desire to be connected via said technology.  Not only do I recognize the knowledge and accomplishments of those who have come before, I embrace them wholeheartedly as an essential part of continued life on this planet.  But as our farm motto (Rooted in the past, growing for the future) suggests, I believe that we must put to use these past accomplishments  in a way that makes sense for the changing world, and accepts the speed at which change is happening.

Life is fragile, youth is fleeting, but if you pay attention and remember the lessons you have learned, you just might be lucky enough to take a few extra trips around the sun.