Saturday at 7:00 am

Music City Roots

Logo for Music City Roots show

Music City Roots, Live From The Loveless Cafe is a weekly radio show that revives the historic legacy of live musical radio production in Nashville. Music City Roots, Live From The Loveless Cafe is recorded live and showcases Nashville’s astonishing music scene, from country and Americana to more progressive interpreters of tradition — a “roots and branches” format that brings together fans of different tastes and generations. Presented live from the stage of the Loveless Barn, this show will showcase purveyors of authenticity across many genres.

Music fans worldwide know Nashville as the epicenter of country music, and Music City Roots, Live From the Loveless embraces and builds on that foundation. MCR is broadcast to a global audience, not just as the keeper of the traditional flame, but as a trusted tastemaker that looks to the future of music in all its forms and sub-genres: bluegrass, folk, alternative, western, rockabilly and crossovers into rock, jazz and world music. There has never been a time of greater variety, abundance and quality in Nashville’s creative community, and Music City Roots looks to put that talent on a worldwide stage.

Each broadcast will feature 4-5 artists in 20 minute segments and short interviews, and also encourages collaboration with a nightly Loveless Jam where all musical guests embrace the spirit of Music City as the collaborative epicenter of tradition and innovation. Nashville’s legendary Keith Bilbrey is the announcer; Jim Lauderdale and other leaders of the music community host the festivities.

Upcoming episodes

Journeymen: Ellis Paul, Phil Madeira, Steelism, and Allen Thompson June 4, 2016 | 7:00 am

For some "journeyman" is a stage on the way to legendary status. And for many it’s the steady state of being good, reliable and committed to the work, regardless of fame or gain. When MCR Alum Chuck Mead released his Journeyman’s Wager album he embraced the term as an emblem of his own adaptability and tenacity. To be Americana pretty much means joining a journeyman’s guild, and this week’s superb, original sets at Roots resonated with that spirit.


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Recent episodes

Franklin Five-O: Mike Henderson’s Blues Band, Smooth Hound Smith, Emily West, and Mike Campbell & Teresa Williams May 28, 2016 | 7:00 am

Four remarkable performances by four very different artists, followed by a Johnny Cash tune jam that sounds well-rehearsed on its first and only pass. This crowd was large and attentive and excitable. But I think these spectacular acts could have earned standing Os from a bunch of snakes.


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All Over the Map: Amelia White, Ronnie McDowell, Mike and Ruthy, and Reno Bo May 21, 2016 | 7:00 am

A visiting band from upstate New York will rock your folky world. That would be Mike + Ruthy with their floaty and life-embracing “Bright As You Can,” which is the title track of their new album. Natural tones and consummate musicianship just flow from this five-piece band (organ, mellow electric bass and drums plus the front duo on guitar and fiddle respectively).


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Beyond the Fringe May 14, 2016 | 7:00 am

From a folk soul opening to a retro-soul funk-ass finish, This is an epic edition of the program featuring Crystal Bowersox, Sarah Potenza, The Revelers and AJ & the Jiggawatts


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Guitar Celebration with Thom Bresh, John Knowles, Jonathan Brown, Parker Hastings, Richard Smith, Pat Bergeson, and Annie and the Hot Club May 7, 2016 | 7:00 am

MCR’s Guitar Night began five years ago as an homage to an instrument that can do just about anything, and our Guitar Night shows have been built around wildly different picking pathways. This year, our (roughly) annual ex-string-vaganza had a more thematic focus, thanks to an alliance with the Chet Atkins Appreciation Society. And this edition of Roots, we experienced the down home grace and intricate dexterity of Chet inspired and Chet styled playing from some of the world’s experts and up and comers. The diversity came from their ages, which spanned more than 50 years.


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Bro-Grass April 30, 2016 | 7:00 am

Music City Roots welcomes the Gibson Brothers, the Travelin' McCourys, Sierra Hull and Chris Jones & the Night Drivers


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Keyed Up with Chuck Mead, Elliot Bronson, Aoife O’Donovan, and the Greyhounds April 23, 2016 | 7:00 am

An episode of Roots with chemistry and character featuring Chuck Mead of Lawrence, KS along with other great pickers and players.


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The Doobie Brothers! April 16, 2016 | 7:00 am

The Doobies – 45 years in to a great American career – play two long sets for Music City Roots, and blow everybody away. Anchored in the blues and consummate musicianship, they aren't just going through the motions or coasting on past glory. Their generosity of spirit flows from beginning to the triumphant show closing jam on “Listen To The Music,” which is, after all, something like the Music City Roots mission statement.


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Barn Dance with Ori Naftaly Band, Blair Crimmins, Carolyn Martin, Greensky Bluegrass, Hogslop String Band, and Feufollet. April 9, 2016 | 7:00 am

Back in the day they called our kind of show a Barn Dance and we've taken it on to have our own barn dance every year, even if it's in a Factory. This archival show has exceptional music, especially from my beloved Feufollet. The lineup, including some highlights from earlier shows features Ori Naftaly Band, Blair Crimmins, Carolyn Martin, Greensky Bluegrass, Hogslop String Band, and Feufollet.


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Family Style! Honeycutters, Baillie & the Boys, The Ragbirds, and The Spinney Brothers April 2, 2016 | 7:00 am

Merlefest is among the nation’s leading music festivals, setting the gold standard for big-tent Americana/roots gatherings in the early 90s. It was launched as a simple gathering of star bluegrass musicians to honor the memory of Merle Watson after his tragic accidental death in 1985. The most recent fest was a fantastic showcase of great young artists as well as a load of experienced acoustic talents.


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Catharsis: Gretchen Peters, Miss Tess and the Talkbacks, Frank Fairfield, Shawn Camp and Matraca Berg March 26, 2016 | 7:00 am

The deepest catharsis comes from Gretchen Peters who is more frank than ever in her songs about tragedy, violence and grief. “The only cure for the pain is the pain” she sang at one point. And yet with folk alchemy at work, tales of fratricide (“Blackbirds”), Post Traumatic Stress (“When All You Got Is A Hammer”) and the devastation of an out-of-control oil spill (“Black Ribbons”) filled my heart and felt gorgeous in my ears.


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