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Stories by Kurt Kohnen

Tease photo for Let 'Toxic Avenger' Rip Your Heart Ou...

Let 'Toxic Avenger' Rip Your Heart Out At New Village Arts

Oct. 25
By Beth Accomando, Kurt Kohnen, Roland Lizarondo

This weekend music lovers can choose between San Diego Opera’s "Aida" and New Village Arts’ "Toxic Avenger The Musical."

The bluegrass band Prairie Sky performs in the ...

San Diego Bluegrass Band Prairie Sky Performs In The KPBS Studio

Sept. 5
By Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

In the final installment of Midday Edition's first summer music series we hear from one of San Diego's finest bluegrass bands. Prairie Sky stopped by the KPBS studio to perform and talk about Appalachian music.

The band La Diabla is pictured in this undated ...

Bi-National Band La Diabla Combines Traditional Cumbia Music With Spirit Of Tijuana

Aug. 29
By Jade Hindmon, Kurt Kohnen

The band La Diabla brings its bi-national dance party wherever it goes. As part of the Midday Edition Summer Music Series, musicians Ivan Rodriguez, Adrian Rodriguez and Jose Bolanos stopped by the KPBS studio to share their influences and some history about cumbia music.

San Diego's Euphoria Brass Band in an undated p...

Euphoria Brass Band Brings West Coast Second Line Jazz To KPBS

Aug. 22
By Jade Hindmon, Kurt Kohnen

As part of the Midday Edition Summer music series San Diego's Euphoria Brass Band stopped by KPBS to share their special brand of funky west coast “second line” jazz and talk about how they started.

 Columbia Records Publicity Photo, circa 1976 (...

Herbie Hancock Reflects On The Influences And Highlights Of His Career

Aug. 19
By Jade Hindmon, Kurt Kohnen

San Diego will have a chance to hear the pianist, composer and bandleader, Herbie Hancock in concert Tuesday night at Humphreys Concerts by the bay. Hancock joined Midday Edition Monday to talk about who influenced his sound and creativity.

The Sea Monks perform in KPBS studios, July 23,...

Family Rockabilly Band The Sea Monks Perform In The KPBS Studio

Aug. 15
By Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

San Diego family band The Sea Monks perform their coastal country tunes in the KPBS studio.

Rebecca Jade and the Cold Fact perform in the K...

Rebecca Jade And The Cold Fact Perform Songs From Their New Album 'Running Out Of Time'

Aug. 8
By Jade Hindmon, Kurt Kohnen

The San Diego band Rebecca Jade and the Cold Fact have a funk infused-soul sound that hearkens back to the 70s Motown and Stax-record era.

The Parker Meridien performs at the KPBS studio...

The Parker Meridien Announces New Album And Performs In The KPBS Studio

Aug. 1
By Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

The San Diego band, the Parker Meridien, performs as part of the KPBS Midday Edition Summer Music Series.

Musician Karl Denson in a 2019 photo.

Local Artist, Karl Denson, Talks New Album And Inspiration

March 14
By Jade Hindmon, Kurt Kohnen

Denson talks about the inspiration behind his band's new album, "Gnomes and Badgers."

Tease photo for Wayne Kramer And MC50 Perform At San ...

Wayne Kramer And MC50 Perform At San Diego House Of Blues Wednesday

Oct. 3, 2018
By Kurt Kohnen

Fifty years ago, Wayne Kramer and his band the Motor City 5 released their debut album “Kick Out the Jams,” high energy rock 'n roll that provided the soundtrack to a youth movement of social and political revolution.

Paul Ryu (left) seated and Robert Lopez are pic...

El Vez Brings Mr. Bob's "Unhappy Hour" To The Casbah Monday Night

May 14, 2018
By Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

San Diego’s own Robert Lopez has lived an exciting life performing around the world, but not really as himself. He's better known, either on national television shows or opening for rock stars in a gold lamé Mariachi suit, as the Mexican Elvis, El Vez.

Tease photo for The Zzymzzy Quartet Blends Gypsy Swin...

The Zzymzzy Quartet Blends Gypsy Swing And Jazz Standards From The American Songbook

Dec. 12, 2017
By Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

For over a decade the Zzymzzy Quartet has been transporting audiences back in time with their 1930’s era music. Inspired by Django Reinhardt and the American Songbook, these San Diegans have become an integral part of the swing dance scene.

Russ Gonzales, Paul Lopez, Reagan Branch, Maure...

The B-Side Players Tackle Social Justice, Chicano Power In New Album, ‘California Brown’

Aug. 25, 2017
By Kurt Kohnen, Marissa Cabrera, Maureen Cavanaugh

The B-Side Players are holding a record release party Saturday at the Music Box. The group joined Midday Edition to perform titles off their latest album.

Tease photo for Wellington International Ukulele Orch...

Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra Performs In Escondido Tuesday

Feb. 2, 2016
By Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh, Megan Burke

When you think about ukulele music what comes to mind? Gentle strumming on the beaches of Waikiki? Perhaps an old Elvis movie? Prepare to be re-introduced to this charming instrument, by the amazing repertoire of the Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra.

Tease photo for Adams Avenue Street Fair Takes Over N...

Adams Avenue Street Fair Takes Over Normal Heights

Sept. 24, 2015
By Kurt Kohnen, Marissa Cabrera, Maureen Cavanaugh

Ahead of the annual music festival in Normal Heights, San Diego country artist Sara Petite performs live in the KPBS studios.

Tease photo for Tenor René Barbera Sings For San Diego

Tenor René Barbera Sings For San Diego

Sept. 17, 2015
By Beth Accomando, Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

San Diego Opera brings back rising star Rene Barbera for a solo recital this Saturday at the Balboa Theater.

Tease photo for Eagle Rock Gospel Singers Perform At ...

Eagle Rock Gospel Singers Perform At San Diego's Casbah

June 16, 2015
By Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh, Megan Burke

The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers performed at the Casbah on Kettner Boulevard in June.

Tease photo for The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble Plays Sou...

The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble Plays Sound Of San Diego

June 23, 2015
By Kurt Kohnen, Marissa Cabrera, Maureen Cavanaugh

The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble has a new self-titled debut album featuring laid back, soulful vibes with song titles like "Strolling Adams" and "City Heights."

Tease photo for Balboa Park To Host First 'Make Music...

Balboa Park To Host First 'Make Music San Diego' Festival

June 18, 2015
By Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh, Patty Lane

Before Balboa Park is filled with music Sunday for the first "Make Music San Diego" festival, Hot Pstormi previews the event with a live in-studio performance on Midday Edition.

Tease photo for San Diego Blues Man Tomcat Courtney O...

San Diego Blues Man Tomcat Courtney Opens Up About His Life And Career

Oct. 10, 2013
By Kurt Kohnen, Marissa Cabrera, Maureen Cavanaugh, Roland Lizarondo

San Diego music legend, Tomcat Courtney stops by KPBS to tell stories and sing some songs.

Bill Lee and the Swamp Critters

Gator By The Bay Celebrates Zydeco, Blues And Bayou Music

May 9, 2013
By Kurt Kohnen, Marissa Cabrera, Maureen Cavanaugh, Roland Lizarondo

A preview of San Diego's annual Cajun-fest, Gator by the Bay, with music from the band Billy Lee and the Swamp Critters.

Tease photo for 'Gem Of The Ocean'

'Gem Of The Ocean'

Feb. 20, 2013
By Beth Accomando, Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

To celebrate Black History Month, Cygnet Theater brings in some of the cast from August Wilson’s “Gem of the Ocean” to share a scene.

Tease photo for Radio Play: 'Christmas, Inc.'

Radio Play: 'Christmas, Inc.'

Dec. 24, 2012
By Alison St John, Beth Accomando, Kurt Kohnen

If you feel Christmas has become a crass commercial event, then here's the perfect thing for you: an original radio play called "Christmas, Inc." The play was created for KPBS by Columbia Street Films and it serves up a sly comic tale of a very corporate Christmas.

Tease photo for 'Mars Is Heaven!'

'Mars Is Heaven!'

Oct. 30, 2012
By Beth Accomando, Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

Listen to "mars is Heaven!" the second radio play from Ray Bradbury and performed by Circle Circle dot dot.

Tease photo for 'Zero Hour'

'Zero Hour'

Oct. 29, 2012
By Beth Accomando, Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

In September, Circle Circle dot dot did a fundraiser called "Invasion" in which they performed five radio dramas. KPBS arts reporter Beth Accomando was so impressed she asked them to come in and record the two Ray Bradbury plays for air. Listen to the full play here and watch a behind the scenes video.

Tease photo for Sing Along with Folk-Punk Frank Turne...

Sing Along with Folk-Punk Frank Turner at the Casbah

Nov. 6, 2009
By Kurt Kohnen

UK musician Frank Turner exploits the commonalities of folk and punk rock and demands that you join in.

Tease photo for Brother Ali, Champion Of Difference, ...

Brother Ali, Champion Of Difference, Plays Canes in Mission Beach

Oct. 21, 2009
By Kurt Kohnen

Though Culture Lust contributor Kurt Kohnen has been listening to the music of hip-hop artist Brother Ali for years, the lyrics and music still resonate. Brother Ali has a new album called "Us" and he plays live at Canes in Mission Beach on Wednesday, October 21st.

Tease photo for JJ Cale Has a Passion for Music, Not ...

JJ Cale Has a Passion for Music, Not the Spotlight

June 2, 2009
By Hank Crook, Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

You've heard his songs, but you may not have heard of him. JJ Cale is one of the most low-profile rock 'n' roll legends you will ever find. His songs "After Midnight", "Cocaine", and "Call Me the Breeze" have been made famous by artists like Eric Clapton and Lynyrd Skynyrd. We speak to JJ Cale about his musical influences, his friendship with Clapton, and why he's opted to stay out of the spotlight over the years.

Inventor of Mobile Phone Talks Texting, Future of Communication

Aug. 18, 2009
By Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

How have cell phones changed our lives? Inventor of the mobile phone, and purveyor of portability, Marty Cooper is still at it. We'll find out what the "father of the mobile phone" thinks about texting, and how he thinks we can improve wireless communications.

Paying Tribute to Michael Jackson

July 7, 2009
By Kurt Kohnen, Maureen Cavanaugh

These Days honors Michael Jackson with music from his "Off the Wall Special Edition" album featuring "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough."