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Lost Notes
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Lost Notes

Author: KCRW

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An anthology of some of the greatest music stories never truly told. Top journalists present stand-alone audio documentaries that highlight music’s head, heart and beat.
24 Episodes
Song of a Gun

Song of a Gun


As long as there have been guns, there have been songs about guns. But American culture's relationship with guns is changing. Does popular music reflect that? We take a look at the history of music's relationships with guns, and gun control activism, to find out.
In the early ‘80s, two teenage siblings in London recorded an album that fused Pakistani pop and British New Wave. It became a perfect harmony of the two worlds they lived in. This is the story behind their lost masterpiece.
Imagining Billy Tipton

Imagining Billy Tipton


Jazz pianist Billy Tipton has been celebrated by some as a trans pioneer – but his story resists an easy telling.
As a supplement to our episode on John Fahey, we share a conversation between Jessica Hopper and Carla Green about artist legacies in the era of cancel culture and #MeToo.
John Fahey’s guitar playing influenced the sound of the American underground for generations. But how does that legacy change when you hear from three of the women who knew him best?
The rock band Fanny ruled the Sunset Strip in the 1970s, and they were supposed to be the next big thing. They explain the price women pay for being ahead of their time.
Synth pioneer Suzanne Ciani used an esoteric instrument to design some of the most well-known commercial sounds of the 20th century.
Poet and author Hanif Abdurraqib's letter to Cat Power about how her album The Greatest worked its way into his life.
The Freeze were an early American punk band. Now, 40 years later, two members reckon with the lyrics they wrote as teenagers.
On this season of Lost Notes, the music journalist and author Jessica Hopper is looking at artist legacies. How do they hold up? How do they change over time? Learn how decades on a song can find new meaning, something different than when it was written. Find out what happens when we apply our 2019 politics to 1974’s songs. And hear from pioneering women who have been written out of music’s history.
In the wake of the swinging ‘60s, a young woman named Aisha Ali travels to North Africa in search of her roots. There, she single-handedly documents hours and hours of music and film from Algeria, Libya, Tunisia, Morocco, and Egypt ... much of it still unheard.
In 1989 McDonald’s ran the biggest flexi-disc promotion ever, sending out 80 million discs (playing the “Menu Song”) as inserts in newspapers all over the country. A very special copy of this record was almost burned to heat a family home in Galax, Virginia. Instead, it ended up winning the homeowner a million dollars.
One of the most unlistenable bands of the ‘60s became a cult favorite decades later, gaining praise from the likes of Frank Zappa, Kurt Cobain and Sonic Youth. But did the Wiggin sisters from Fremont, New Hampshire even want to be in a band in the first place? The New Yorker’s Susan Orlean recounts her reporting on the band’s strange trip to unexpected fame.
When Johnny Cash played his iconic concert at Folsom Prison he covered the song of one very talented inmate. Johnny pulled some strings, plucked Glen Sherley from prison and brought him out on the road. Did this turn of fortune wind up helping or hurting the formerly unknown songwriter?
The boys in New Edition were basketball fans from Boston - Celtics country. So what happened when they hung out with the L.A. Lakers in a music video during the height of the 1980s Celtics/Lakers rivalry?
In this intimate radio portrait of one of music’s most legendary eccentric geniuses, writer Kristine McKenna offers you a visceral experience of what it was like to be friends with Don Van Vliet (aka Captain Beefheart).
Pirate radio station WBAD in New York was a beloved source for fans of underground, unsanitized hip-hop in the 1990s, but how high could this illegal operation fly while also staying under the radar?
An FBI Investigation, an engagement ring, wine coolers...  the surprising story behind the ubiquitous anthem that every teenager bangs out on their first guitar.
Introducing Lost Notes

Introducing Lost Notes


Hear a preview of Lost Notes, an anthology of some of the greatest music stories never truly told. Top journalists present stand-alone audio documentaries that highlight music’s head, heart and beat, with host Solomon Georgio as your guide.
The new season of Lost Notes will be here in September. Meantime, this summer, we’re sharing a couple of bonus episodes. Fifty years ago, an unlikely musical group evolved out of the Oakland chapter of the Black Panther Party. They were called The Lumpen. And although they quickly gained a following for their air-tight funk, they were always meant to be much more than mere entertainment. Peter Gilstrap reports on the rise and fall of an unlikely R&B group born out of social upheaval.
Comments (11)


Season 1 - 5 stars best music podcast available. Season 2 - 1.5 stars, change the name to Lost Plot, a couple okay episodes but mostly it's more of an attempt to be marraige of the current news cycle and a loose tie-in to music 2nd. All that aside, even with the chosen course, though well produced, the writting occassionally is on par with a 6th grader school presentation, the last episode of season 2 is a perfect example of that. Hoping season 3 will be better or I'll be a Lost Fan.

Jun 20th

Joe Rooney

this is incredible. I love discoveries like this. hybrids of old and new music that quite often comes the children of immigrants or the locals who are influenced by immigrant culture. that is what created the Pogues and The Specials.

Jun 17th

Javier Bassi

Amazing story. Such a ahead-of-her-time woman. Thank you.

Feb 2nd

Ron Hudson

Thanks for what you all do at Lost Notes! Every episode leaves me glad I heard it. Especially when you tell the story of someone like the Shagg's. I have heard a lot about the Top 40 bands so it means a lot to me to learn about the other people that have been apart of the Music Industry and their stories that would otherwise have become forgotten...

Jun 21st

Joshua Davis


Jun 11th
Reply (1)

dustin dizon

Thanks for bringing us some interesting, often ignored topics. Can't wait for the next season!

Jun 7th

Rafa Rivera

I don't understand

May 26th

Daniel Gonçalves

an incredible story. very well told.

May 20th

Jami Rinderknecht

great show

May 13th

Bryan Sandlin

Fascinating first episode! Won't spoil any of the interesting facts I had no idea about so just listen for yourself. Episode 2 had me on the edge of my seat! Definitely looking forward to more...

Apr 12th
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