John McLaughlin, Jimmy Herring, Susan Tedeschi, Derek Trucks
Alex Machecek, John Scofield, Scott Sharrad, Louie Shelton
Ronny Jordan, Devon Allman, Eliot Lewis, Oz Noy
Carl Mörner Ringström, Joey Molland, Michael Lee Firkins, Ray Russell
Oteil Burbridge, Etienne Mbappe, Jerry Jemmott, Nathan East
Chuck Leavell, Barbara Dennerlein, Jon Batiste, Matthias Bublath,
Gary Husband, Matt Slocum
Jaimoe, Jeff Sipe
Various Instruments Interviews
Anne Drummond, Jim Hart, Rod Melancon, The Ringers: Jimmy Herring, Mike Landau, Wanye Krantz, Kieth Carlock
Michael Lee Firkins
On this episode I speak with guitarist Michael Lee Firkins, born in Omaha, Nebraska. He first gained attention as the “next big thing” in instrumental rock with his impressive guitar skills. On his just released album “YEP” on the Magna Carta label, he puts his singer/songwriter skills on display, backed up by the legendary Chuck Leavell (Rolling Stones, John Mayer, Allman Brothers), and Matt Abts and Andy Hess of Govt. Mule.
This album draws on rock, blues, country, and even some heavy metal vituosity, and is impressive for a first vocal outing. We talk about his musical development, beginnings, the guitar (in the photo to the left) that he conceived, and his development as a singer and songwriter.
Derek Trucks talks about international audiences, Howlin’ Wolf, Hendrix, Clapton, Santana, John Lee Hooker, Duane Allman, Coltrane, and even classical music.
Here is audio from my feature interview with Derek for All About Jazz.
In 2012 I caught up with Chuck again after he received a Grammy Award for Lifetime Achievement, and released Back To The Woods, his tribute CD to the early blues piano players with guest appearances by John Mayer and Keith Richards.
Chuck Leavell is one of the world’s premier blues rock pianists—a veteran musician who has recorded and toured with many of the best-known names in the business. He is perhaps best known for his work with the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, The Black Crowes, and his legendary years with the Allman Brothers Band in the ’70s.
He’s a phenomnal musician who’s been part of so much musical history. In 2008 Chuck did an extensive career retrospective interview with me for All About Jazz.