Brian Clardy

Ben Rice Quartet, Facebook

Nashville-based jazz guitarist and Murray State alumnus Ben Rice has a new album out called, "Seeds." Café Jazz host Dr. Brian Clardy caught up with Rice after a recording session with his band and they talk about his influences, his new album and some thoughts on the holiday season.

Over this past summer, long-time public radio host Garrison Keillor announced his retirement from A Prairie Home Companion, in a slow transition during their 2015-2016 season. His replacement is singer and mandolinist (and for a time a Murray State student) Chris Thile best known as part of Nickel Creek and Punch Brothers. Commentator Dr. Brian Clardy grew up listening to A Prairie Home Companion and says the change prompts him to reflect on other transitions in life.

Chad Lampe, WKMS

Murray State welcomed NBC News' Chuck Todd to campus Tuesday for their Presidential Lecture Series, sponsored by the President's Office, Student Government Association and the MSU Foundation. Commentator and Murray State History Professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects on the annual series and his formative years as a "political junkie" attending University of Tennesee at Martin.

solitairemiles.com

When Brian Clardy previously spoke with jazz vocalist Solitaire Miles, we were introduced to her music on the albums "Born To Be Blue" and "Melancholy." Also, her paintings and thoughts on the future of jazz as an art form. We welcome her back to Cafe Jazz to learn about her new project, Susie Blue and the Lonesome Fellas, merging western swing and vintage jazz in the style of Patsy Cline, Patty Page, Mary Ford and Kay Starr. We learn how she became interested in the genre, similarities between western swing and jazz, how audiences are reacting to her latest work and her holiday wishes.

amazon.com

Sybil's career as an R&B singer began in the mid 1980s and took off in 1989-1990 with her covers of Dionne Warwick's "Don't Make Me Over" and "Walk On By," which reached numbers 2 and 3 on the US R&B charts, respectively. Her other hits include "The Love I Lost" and "When I'm Good and Ready" (which reached 3 and 5 on the UK charts). Her music has taken her around the world and eventually back to the US, where she now teaches a program geared towards educating under-serviced youth. Brian Clardy speaks with Sybil on Cafe Jazz about some insight into her career, her teaching methods and her thoughts for the holidays.

The 1964 United States Presidential Election between Lyndon B. Johnson and Barry Goldwater is regarded as both a landslide win for the Democratic Party, followed by Johnson's "Great Society" programs: the Voting Rights at of 1965 and the War on Poverty; and also the foundation of the conservative values of the modern Republican Party, leading to the "Reagan Revolution" in the 1980s. Commentator and Murray State History Professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects on the legacy of the 1964 campaign for president, 50 years ago.

WKMS File Photo

On August 2, 2014, a record attendance showed up for the 134th Fancy Farm Picnic to hear with classic stump speeches from local and statewide politicians vying for the hotseat. Murray State history professor, commentator and political junkie Dr. Brian Clardy reflects on this year's event, one week later and some of his impressions ahead of the November election.

crmvet.org

"All my life I've been sick and tired. Now I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired." - Fannie Lou Hamer

This summer marks the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer, a campaign to open the polls to African-American voters in Mississippi, which became a pivotal moment in the Civil Rights era. The summer marked a turning point in ending white supremacy in the state and decades of isolation in the Deep South for black voters ahead of the 1964 elections. Commentator and Murray State history professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects back on Freedom Summer and its legacy 50 years later.

Wikimedia Commons

Former Senate Majority Leader and White House Chief of Staff Howard Baker died last Thursday at age 88. Baker was one of the key players in Ronald Reagan's historic tax and spending cuts and was an influential member of the Senate committee that investigated the Watergate scandal. He served as US Senator from Tennessee from 1967 to 1985 and Commentator and History Professor Dr. Brian Clardy remembers the Republican Senator as a voice of reason in the later half of the 20th Century.

Library of Congress, Wikimedia Commons

Fifty years ago this Sunday (February 9, 2014), four mop-topped lads from Liverpool took to a television stage and changed the world. The Beatles made their stateside debut on The Ed Sullivan Show in three consecutive headlining performances to great anticipation and fanfare, drawing over 73 million viewers and launching the 'British Invasion.' Commentator and Murray State history professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects on their first performance and its cultural impact over 50 years.

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