The Detox Diaries: Radio Shows by DJ Echo

DJ Echo and DJ Crap decided on a winter detox to cleanse their respective bodies of the toxins of summer excess…as part of this process, DJ Echo embarked on a mission to do an hour radio show with a cup of hot water each morning and featuring some of his favourite artists…tune in, turn up and rock out!

DJ Echo Detox Diaries Promo

(DJ Echo and DJ Crap also did a show together to celebrate their newfound abstinence)

The symbiotic relationship between musicians and drugs is well known, but how about musicians who don’t use drugs to unlock their creativity? Do such people exist?

DJs Echo & Crap, who themselves are in the middle of an annual detox programme that stipulates temperance and have been abstaining from any form of legal or illegal stimulation for almost two weeks, decide to find out.

They managed to cobble together a radio show featuring the music of straight-edged artists that was slightly embellished with musicians who reformed their wild ways later in the careers and found sobriety.

Some surprises here…it turns out more musicians than immediately spring to mind have produced musical gems in a state of complete clearheadedness. Stay tuned for the much longer and possibly more interesting inebriates show where there are many more musical choices available.

Thanks for listening and you’re welcome.

From DJ Echo:

Now past the midway point of their collective alkalising detox, DJs Echo and Crap team up for a tribute to sobriety featuring the music of musicians who evidently never indulged in anything stronger than a beer or a cup of coffee (here’s looking at you Frank Zappa!) to the many who have reformed and cleaned up after earlier periods of constant intoxication or ‘worse’! Somehow managing to squeeze the Rolling Stones in the show was a high-point for DJ Echo (the Bill Wyman penned and sung ‘In Another Land’) whilst DJ Crap took listeners through a Tom Waits segment. Comparisons to their last collaboration two weeks back for Bob Dylan’s birthday where the two took more of a Keith Richards path to the palace of wisdom, this was more of a Ted Nugent inspired effort, albeit that there was no chance of that particular gun-happy Republican redneck’s music getting an airing.

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1. Johnny Cash

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #1: Johnny Cash: May 28, 2015

DJ Echo and DJ Crap wisely decided on a three-week detox after the excesses of their Bob Dylan collaboration. As part of the cleansing process, DJ Echo has embarked on a musical quest that will feature one artist per day for one hour in the morning…today it was Johnny Cash, tomorrow tune in at 8: 00 a.m. for the Nick Cave feature…presumably the music will become brighter as the toxins leave DJ Echo’s body over the course of the next 21 days…perhaps DJ Echo will transcend this world and achieve nirvana…anything is possible on Karamea Radio…stay tuned and thanks for listening.

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2. Nick Cave

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #2: Nick Cave: May 28, 2015

Part 2 of DJ Echo’s on-going Detox Diaries series features the music of the legendary (round these parts at least) Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. 60 minutes was only sufficient to scratch the surface of the man’s work, but a mix of well known songs (Nick Cave doesn’t really have ‘hits’ as such!) and obscurities gave a glimpse of his outlandish talent. Also included was a very brief weather and traffic report- this is breakfast radio after all. Tune in tomorrow for(most likely) an hour of Cat Power!

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3. Cat Power

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #3: Cat Power: May 29, 2015

DJ Echo returns to the Radio Karamea studio for the 3rd instalment of the increasingly popular Detox Diaries. This episode features the original songs and interpretations of other people’s work by the uniquely talented Chan Marshall, better known as Cat Power. Covers of Dylan, Kiwi artist Peter Jefferies and the Rolling Stones sit alongside tracks from her own 20-year-and-counting canon of work. DJ Echo is headed for the hills over the weekend but will return energised and further detoxed early next week for Part 4 in the ongoing series. Possible contenders for that show include Matthew Houck, aka Phosphorescent but suggestions are welcomed from the local and global audience. Those watching closely will notice that the cover photos for these shows are remarkably similar, but each one will feature DJ Echo with a different cup, even if he’s wearing the same jumper every day. Thanks for listening!

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 4. Matthew Houck aka Phosphorescent

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #4: Phosphorescent: June 2, 2015

Back after a small tramping break in the Nelson Lakes over the long weekend (and using the justification that it would be un-Kiwi to go into the forest and not have at least a couple of drinks to rationalise a slight fall from the detox wagon), DJ Echo returns for the 4th hour-long special in the current series. Focussing today on Matthew Houck, aka Phosphorescent- the songs are by turns melancholy and exuberant and offer a sample of the work of one of the best U.S. songwriters to emerge this century (or so says DJ Echo). Tune in again tomorrow for an hour of an artist yet to be decided.

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5. The Felice Brothers

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #5: The Felice Brothers: June 3, 2015

A hugely talented musical family from upstate New York, the Felice Brothers (and off-shoot projects) are the focus of today’s instalment of the Detox Diaries. Taking a blueprint developed by The Band nearly 50 years ago, the Felice Brothers combine multiple writers and lead singers, with an element the of ‘no one sings harmonies like blood brothers’ theory which has paralleled the history of popular music for even longer. Songs about chickens, love and hauling meth from Chicago, this show might make you tap your toes and engage your brain at the same time. DJ Echo also took time out to report on overnight news from the world and a report on the near gridlock on Karamea’s Wharf Road this morning with 3 moving vehicles sighted simultaneously! See you tomorrow for another episode in the on-going series. Now, time for lentils for breakfast…………

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 6. David Kilgour & The Clean

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #6: David Kilgour & The Clean: June 4, 2015

Today’s instalment of the Detox Diaries sees DJ Echo pay homage to the uber-lords of New Zealand post-punk rock, The Clean. The Kilgour Brothers, guitarist David and drummer Hamish plus Robert Scott on bass have been making music together and apart for well over a third of a century and an hour was never going to be enough to do more than touch on the major milestones of their collective careers, but within the allotted 60 minutes the sublime wash of David K’s guitar reigned supreme and lit up the morning air of a bright sunny Karamea day. Tracks drawn from David’s solo albums, a couple of more recent Sam Hunt collaborations and a smattering of 80s Clean classics to finish with, this Detox Diary should make your day brighter wherever you are. Tune in tomorrow for an hour of Bill Callahan and Smog.

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 7. Bill Callahan & Smog

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #7: Bill Callahan & Smog: June 6, 2015

After a 24 hour delay due to technical issues with the radio station computer, DJ Echo returns with an hour of music from U.S. artist Bill Callahan, playing songs from his earlier incarnation as Smog, a couple of covers including Gil Scott Heron and a smattering of selections from Bill’s recent work under his own name. On a rather damp and grey Karamea morning it seemed somewhat appropriate to feature Smog, although the closest we get here is low cloud and a bit of mist. Tune in tonight for a Saturday Night Detox Special– Artists who never (?) strayed from the straight and narrow and chose to remain sober and drug-free throughout their careers. Could be a rather short show!

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8. Nina Simone

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #8: Nina Simone: June 7, 2015

Nina Simone was the featured artist on a crisp Karamea Sunday morning as DJ Echo explored her vast and impressive catalogue in Part 8 of the Detox Diaries series. Featuring originals by Ms Simone alongside some wonderful interpretations of other artists’ work, this was a fairly low-on-talk show given that many of the songs clocked in at 8-10 minutes, making for a relaxing but inspiring start to Sunday morning for DJ Echo and listeners alike.

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 9. Will Oldham aka Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #9: Will Oldham aka Bonnie “Prince” Billie: June 8, 2015

Despite rarely recording under his own name, Will Oldham aka Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy (and a host of other aliases), has amassed a large and wide-ranging body of work since his debut releases in the early 90s. In today’s Detox Diary DJ Echo plays songs from across the Bonnie Prince’s career beginning, as perhaps all Monday morning radio should, with No Bad News from 2006 album The Letting Go and ending up an hour later with Ease Down the Road from the album of the same name. A languid and lyrical but intriguing start to the final week of the Detox Diaries (or is it?)- tomorrow will be altogether stranger and perhaps even a touch psychedelic.

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10. Robyn Hitchcock

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #10: Robyn Hitchcock: June 9, 2015

Robyn Hitchcock is a singular talent- by turns whimsical, quirky, surrealistic and downright odd. DJ Echo is a long term fan and chose this tenth instalment of the detox diaries to focus on the work of an artist who seems to polarise people into love him or hate him. Songs about sledges, eating too much cheese and the Sleeping Knights of Jesus sit side by side in the Hitchcock canon with somewhat more conventional but no less idiosyncratic songs about Condeleeza Rice, the Devil’s Radio and an imaginary sighting of Nick Drake. It’s all here, and there’ll be more from DJ Echo tomorrow.

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 11. The Decemberists

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #11: The Decemberists: June 10, 2015

Hailing from Portland, Oregon, The Decemberists’ sound defies description to some extent, but is hailed by All Music as being influenced by 60s British folk-rockers Pentangle and Fairport Convention as well as the 80s grandeur of the Waterboys. Today’s instalment in the series takes in tracks from 6 of the band’s albums, beginning with a modern sea-shanty and passing through the Mariner’s Revenge Song en route to a suite of tracks from their 2009 masterpiece The Hazards of Love. DJ Echo encountered a rather stormy Karamea morning for the 11th show in the Detox series and made the decision to drive the 400-odd metres from his home to Radio Karamea’s studio (rather than swim) to bring the show to the listening public. Enjoy, and see you again tomorrow!

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12. The Black Heart Procession

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #12: The Black Heart Procession: June 11, 2015

San Diego band The Black Heart Procession have long been a favourite of DJ Echo. Their six albums and assorted collaborations (including, featured here, a typically quirky remix by the great Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry) proved to be a fertile musical wellspring for today’s Detox Diary- #12 in the series!. The band’s largely unrelenting sense of bleakness seemed appropriate on an atypically cold and wet Karamea morning. While the band are now on a semi-permanent hiatus, DJ Echo shows no sign of slowing down as the Detox Diaries reaches the round dozen mark with more to follow in the days and weeks ahead.

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13. Okkervil River

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #13: Okkervil River: June 12, 2015

Lou Reed once described Okkervil River’s Will Sheff as the best rock singer in America and who are we to argue with Lou?! Today’s Detox Diary features songs from across the Austin, Texas band’s 15 year plus career. Sheff is a great writer and singer of ‘character songs’ but there’s a strong autobiographical streak lurking behind the clever character studies and dense lyrics. DJ Echo takes listeners on a journey down the River of Golden Dreams through the Silver Gymnasium and ends up in search of Lost Coastlines. Tune in again tomorrow for the lucky 14th show in the series.

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14. Roky Erickson & The 13th Floor Elevators

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #14: Roky Erickson & The 13th Floor Elevators: June 13, 2015

Managing a small element of symbiosis, DJ Echo brings the music of the 13th Floor Elevators (and the subsequent solo career of lead singer Roky Erickson) to the radio waves of Karamea on the 14th instalment of the Detox Diaries series….on the 14th of June. The at times tragic story of Roky Erickson is one of the most disturbing in the annals of rock music and is worth looking into as a tale of triumph (eventually) in the face of extreme adversity. The music featured across the hour and a bit of this show covers all major periods of Roky’s career from the earliest psychedelic stirrings of the Elevators in mid-60s Texas through solo albums from the 80s and eventually to his most recent tour de force, True Love Cast out all Evil, a collaboration with Okkervil River whose own musical journey was the focus of yesterday’s show.

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15. Aretha Franklin

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #15: Aretha Franklin: June 14, 2015

Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, is a bona fide musical legend and needed no introduction, nor much in the way of talk or explanation, from DJ Echo on the final Sunday of the Detox Diaries series (or is it?). Drawn entirely from Aretha’s classic years on Atlantic Records in the late 60s and early 70s, this is proof, if it were needed, of the timeless wonder of this music. Thanks for tuning in!

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16. Syd Barrett & Early Pink Floyd

DJ Echo: The Detox Diaries #16: Syd Barrett: June 15, 2015

Following on from Saturday’s Roky Erickson show, another of rock’s legendary and polarising figures, Syd Barrett, is the focus of this Monday morning blast of whimsical 60s psychedelia from the earliest days of Pink Floyd as well as Barrett’s own brief but stellar solo career. In keeping with Radio Karamea’s tradition of being the best and least conventional radio station in the world, few others would dare (or bother) to play an hour of slightly unhinged, largely joyous and deeply questing music as this to serenade listeners at the start of the working week. But amidst the meteorological drabness of the past few days what could be better than a blast of Syd. Tomorrow marks the theoretical end of the Detox Diaries; the question is, will DJ Echo begin tomorrow’s show with a beer. Or a whisky. Or both? Tune in on Tuesday and find out!

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17. The Flaming Lips

DJ Echo: The Retox Diaries #1: The Flaming Lips: June 16, 2015 

As his joint detox (conducted simultaneously with DJ Crap) concludes after an atypically abstemious 21 days, DJ Echo celebrates the return of coffee and, even more importantly, sunshine and with it National-Party-proofing Vitamin D. Oklahoma’s finest the Flaming Lips are the featured artist today and the 60 minutes of their music showcased here is but a taste of the wonders of their illustrious catalogue. The final show in one sequence or the first of a new one? Only time will tell, and as the Flaming Lips kindly remind listeners on the concluding song, All We Have is Now! Thanks for tuning in over the past 3 weeks and 17 single-artist shows. Only on the world’s best radio station, Radio Karamea!

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18: Nusrat Fatah Ali Khan

DJ Echo: The Retox Diareis #2 Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan June 20, 2015

Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. The Greatest Voice Ever Recorded. The Voice of Heaven. The Master of Qawwali. The Sub-continental Elvis. These accolades have been proscribed to the legendary NFAK both during his stellar career and since his death in 1997 (coincidentally 20 years to the day after Elvis himself left Memphis permanently to live here in Karamea!). On a recent Retox Diaries Show (on the 2nd shortest day of the year), DJ Echo took to the airwaves to provide listeners with a sample of the genius of Nusrat.

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19: Mercury Rev

DJ Echo: Retox Diaries #3: Mercury Rev: June 29, 2015

Mercury Rev: after a week or so of delightful distraction, DJ Echo returns for a final week (well, perhaps!) of morning shows before setting off on his much-anticipated scientific experiement to see if it is actually possible to live in Christchurch during July. Evidence will be gathered and reported back to the good people of Karamea and all our internet listeners in August. In the meantime, this morning’s hour-long special focuses on the music of Mercury Rev, a somewhat (ahem) mercurial and maverick outfit from upstate New York. Spanning their 25 year career and featuring Neil Young and Burt Bacharach covers among the original Rev tracks, this is one worth checking out whether you know the band or not.

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20: The Church

DJ Echo Retox Diaries #4: The Church: June 30, 2015

Another round of morning radio hit the Karamea airwaves today, with DJ Echo focussing this time around on the music of Australian icons The Church. Notwithstanding DJ Echo’s usual predilection for gospel music, this should in no way be confused with ‘church music’ but instead embraces the kind of woozy, slightly mystical psychedelia which is so popular around these parts (it makes the cows lay more eggs, or something like that). Sampling tracks mainly from the middle period of the Church’s 35 year career, this show may be low on the Hallelujahs but high on several other levels.

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About LivinginPeaceProject

Paul Murray is the founder of the LivinginPeace Project. www.livinginpeace.com Paul originally from Australia, but have been living in New Zealand for 14 years. Before that he was in Japan for a decade working as a journalist. He met his wife Sanae in Japan and they married in 2008.
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