Monday, July 15, 2013

Red Line Scene Feature: Almost Famous on 95.9 WATD

Almost Famous is a radio program on the local WATD 95.9 station out of Marshfield, MA. Each and every Tuesday from 8-10 PM John Shea and Liza Azizian fill the airwaves with great local music that you may not even realize exists. With so much crap taking up so much of the radio dial these days, the two radio hosts are a beacon in the storm, shedding a light on new and exciting local music that you can see for less than a down payment on a car and is (in many cases) just as great as those mainstream acts.

I caught up with half of the radio duo, John Shea, and asked him a few questions about the show, his involvement in the music scene, and why he loves being an integral part of the local music community.

1) What projects is the station currently working on aside from the show?
What are the plans for the future?

JS: There’s always something fun and interesting happening here at WATD, especially when it comes to local music. In addition to Almost Famous, WATD features 2 local artist showcases each weekday – at 9:45am and again at noon. Lisa (my Almost Famous co-host) and I are both very active in the local music community and attend shows through out the week. As for the future, it’s sort of a day by day process. We try to not look too far ahead because we might miss something awesome happening right now.

2) Why do we have the best local music scene?

JS: It’s eclectic. There’s something for all ears. And because the music community as a whole seems to be one big family.

3) Favorite OR least favorite/most embarrassing moment on air from your career?

JS: My favorite is probably back when Ashley Jordan, a then teenage singer-songwriter made her radio debut on Almost Famous. She drove all the way from Worcester with her guitar and broke a string before she finished the first song. So Lisa put a call out on the air and thankfully several area musicians were listening and came to her rescue. It all unfolded live on the radio. For months after that show the live guest always pointed out that they had brought extra strings. I think it really helped put us and Ashley on the map.  

4) If you could have anyone on the show from the area (general New England) – famous or “almost famous” who would it be?

JS: The next band/musician to come on the show that we haven’t met yet.

5) Why is fostering local music important to you?

JS: Because the commercial music scene lately just seems boring. For usually less than $10 you can see a whole night of live music, with several bands that are as good if not better than most major established artists. I also love checking out area open mics because it’s a chance to see some amazing musicians at the beginning of their careers. The open mics I attend regularly are Luciosos in Plymouth on Mondays hosted by Boston Catalano, The Tinker’s Son in Norwell hosted by Jackson Wetherbee and Driftwood in Plymouth hosted by Jeff Hilliard and Mike Visconti. And finally because some of the people I’ve met along the way have become some of my best friends.

6) Do you have any "guilty pleasure" music? Something the world may be surprised to hear you listen to?

JS: I do love rockin’ out to the sounds of the 80s, especially sappy power ballads.

7) Aside from being such a supporter of local music, do you have any other pastimes?

JS: Radio and music pretty much run most of my life. But when I do have a chance to escape, I love hiking, camping, walking the dog and just taking simple road trips to random places just for fun.   

8) What would you want people to know about you aside from your musical endeavors?

JS: I couldn’t dream of doing anything else!

Check out the Almost Famous Facebook page for past episode links, updates on whats going on around town, and more information on how you can be involved.

Also, you can touch base with John and Lisa through email: 

Thank you guys for supporting local music, you rock!

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