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Song & Story

Author: Kevin Heider

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Conversations with songwriters about their songs. Each episode begins and ends with a featured song played in full, allowing the listener to hear it with fresh ears and a new perspective. We explore the story behind the song with the artist who wrote it, discussing specific lines, phrases, themes, metaphors, production decisions, and the creative process.
35 Episodes
War is always a defeat for humanity. On the 76th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, singer-songwriter Kevin Heider takes us on a sonic trip through history as he reflects on the morality of nuclear war.
Pain is unavoidable in this life. For those who experience it more than others, is freedom possible? Hong Kong-based singer-songwriter, Count the Leaves, ponders this question in her hopeful tune "Elephant."
Some people leave lasting impressions. Why some stick with us while others fade remains a mystery. Singer-songwriter Chris Cole dives into the romance of it all in his song "Mercedes."
It's a beautiful thing when art goes to work for the common good, to keep the flame of our collective conscience burning. Jenny & Tyler's anthemic "Waters Roll" is powerful cry for justice.
Making the most of the time we’re given. Overcoming the fears that keep us from trying. Staying true to who we are. These themes are at the heart of Merlot Embargo’s infectious pop anthem "One Day."
Reflecting on our most formative experiences is an essential part of the growth process. Denison Witmer's "San Francisco" is a moving tribute to the passage of time and the places that remain in our memory long after we've left them.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, we wanted to have an honest conversation with Michael Vanderburgh (executive director of the St. Vincent de Paul Society of Dayton, Ohio) about the struggles of serving the homeless during a global health crisis.
Every relationship has highs and lows. Sometimes love feels like a dream — sometimes it's a storm. Sarah Kroger's beautiful song "I Choose You" lends an honest and hopeful voice to the ups, the downs, and the daily choices we make to stand in love.
Someday all we have known will come to an end. As sobering as this reality may be, it hasn't stamped out man's search for meaning or our desire to love and be loved. In the midst of all the uncertainty, Tyler Hook's "Let's Go" is an invitation to hope.
There’s a lot of hurt in this world. How do we navigate the pain and uncertainty wrought by the impermanence of all things? In this flipped episode, Marie Miller interviews our host, Kevin Heider, about his song “Down by the Sycamore Tree,” a moving narrative about grief and loss.
Upon the release of his new album "Ohio," Kevin Heider walks us through his journey into Springsteen's music. As the Heider family home video archives prove, the roots run deep. "Ohio" is available now on iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify, and more.
Home is a place we sometimes have to leave to find. It's everything we long for. And it's worth fighting for. Marie Miller's boot-stomping anthem about returning to our "Homeland" is imbued with an infectious hope.
There are things in this world that we can’t control. Everyone experiences loss and insecurity. This is why we need each other. In their latest single "Tides," James & the Drifters showcase a cool indie new wave vibe to remind us that we all have so much love to give.
Some stories are told without words. In his original musical compositions, Jimmy Mitchell paints with pianos and strings to separate light from darkness, to tell the story of "The Battle" that rages around and within us all.
In this delightful introduction to season two, our host (singer-songwriter Kevin Heider) sits down with his daughter to discuss her love of music. It concludes with an acoustic in-studio performance of an unreleased song.
Artists evolve. They're always growing, changing, and challenging themselves creatively. As he learns to lament and let go, Wendell Kimbrough’s latest album (“Come to Me”) reflects the evolution of his artistry and his person.
We all get by with a little help from our friends. Sometimes their love is tender — sometimes it's tough. In his clever throwback tune "Two Ways To Be Worthless," Wendell Kimbrough playfully explores the tougher side of love.
Ike Ndolo’s latest album (“Shine”) is a unique experience from start to finish. He tells us a lot more about what went into it in this bonus episode. We also talk about live performance, evolving as artists, fan feedback, dancing, Ike’s quasi-fetish with beautiful hands, and more!
Life is a symphony. We all have a part to play. While questions of identity and purpose are universal to the human experience, the color of a person's skin is a formative detail. Ike Ndolo shares his story as a brother on the outside in "Your Table."
Death is the primordial fact of life. And yet, it seems easier sometimes for the dying to accept death than for the living to accept loss. In a moving homage to those who have passed, the women of Sister Sinjin say “Goodbye” in their own beautiful way.
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