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Lost Notes


The award-winning anthology of some of the greatest music stories never truly told. Top journalists present stand-alone audio documentaries that highlight music’s head, heart and beat. Prior seasons were hosted and curated by Hanif Abdurraqib, Jessica Hopper, and Solomon Georgio. The show returns in February 2024 with new co-hosts and curators Novena Carmel and Michael Barnes.


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The award-winning anthology of some of the greatest music stories never truly told. Top journalists present stand-alone audio documentaries that highlight music’s head, heart and beat. Prior seasons were hosted and curated by Hanif Abdurraqib, Jessica Hopper, and Solomon Georgio. The show returns in February 2024 with new co-hosts and curators Novena Carmel and Michael Barnes.






Lost Notes Returns with the True Story of ‘Tainted Love’

‘Lost Notes’ returns for Season 4 with a special preview episode about the song “Tainted Love,” and its lesser-known origins as a forgotten ‘60s soul gem from LA.


Jonathan Demme: 'Stop Making Sense' interview and guest DJ set (1984)

Talking Heads’ 1984 film, Stop Making Sense, has long been regarded by critics and fans alike as one of the greatest concert films ever made. A new A24 restoration of the film is out in theaters now. Director Jonathan Demme dropped in on Deirdre for a guest DJ set while the film was still in theaters. Demme sat in for SNAP No. 172 on November 8, 1984, spinning a wild selection of his favorite music — including the premiere of a then-unheard Talking Heads song — and discussing the making of the now-iconic film. Read on for their conversation and dive into his song choices with our Jonathan Demme Spotify playlist.


Dwight Yoakam & The Babylonian Cowboys

Among the more uproarious of SNAP sessions, Dwight Yoakam brought his merry band of Babylonian Cowboys to SNAP in July 1986. In addition to playing a full set of rip-roaring country and bluegrass, Yoakam and his band engage Deirdre in a stream of relentless banter and convivial shit-talking. One for the books.


Glass Eye

Glass Eye represented the very best of what Austin, TX had to offer, which at the time also included “SNAP!” staples like the Reivers, the Wild Seeds, and Poi Dog Pondering. And whenever Glass Eye came to L.A., Deirdre welcomed them with open arms and a sincere appreciation of their own bent nature. Their third session from February 1990 captures the band at its zenith: a tightly-coiled blast of nervous energy, delivering their best performance yet.


Daniel Lanois

In 1989, Daniel Lanois was in the upper pantheon of pop producers, having produced globe-shattering albums like U2’s “The Unforgettable Fire” and Peter Gabriel’s “So.” But Lanois was also a songwriter and performer in his own right, and 1989’s solo debut, “Acadie” finally redressed the imbalance. He joined Deirdre for a short but powerful solo acoustic set in December of that year.


Bent By Nature - Ep. 10: Rollins

Throughout “Bent By Nature,” you’ve heard many stories of the lifelong connections set in motion by Deirdre O’Donoghue. But none were quite as surprising as the bond between Deirdre and fellow iconoclast Henry Rollins, the former Black Flag frontman, musician, writer, actor, activist, and longtime KCRW host. After a chance meeting in early 1984, Rollins became a regular voice on “SNAP!” And he quickly became one of her most treasured co-hosts and friends. In our final episode of “Bent By Nature,” Rollins shares his remembrances of Deirdre: the DJ, tastemaker, and human being who changed his life irrevocably. “You’re impossible to pigeonhole is what you are. You are simply Rollins. That’s all there is to it. And I rather like it.” — Deirdre O’Donoghue, “SNAP!,” 3/22/84


Bent By Nature - Ep. 9: Promised Land (with Julian Cope)

The artist has got to be not like the historian. The historian’s got hindsight. He can go back and go, “That was a great moment.” But the artist’s got to go, “No, I was there.” It’s like, history is something that happens. You can’t be there at history. — Julian Cope, May 10, 1991 It’s May of 1991. Deirdre is in London, chatting backstage with post-punk indie underground legend Julian Cope. Cope has just released “Peggy Suicide,” one of the most ambitious and successful albums of his career. And while Deirdre’s in town, they’re hatching plans for Julian to appear on “SNAP!” But just days after that announcement, “SNAP!” was off the air. Deirdre left KCRW for good in June of 1991. Then she left LA, too, for a while. The following year, she showed up in rural England to live with Cope and his family. Cope joins Bent By Nature to recount their unique relationship and roles in each other’s lives.


Bent By Nature - Ep. 8: Half A World Away (with Michael Stipe)

It’s September of 1984. And Deirdre is head over heels for a fast-rising quartet from Athens, Georgia called R.E.M. In just a few years, the band’s music will be inescapable on commercial and college radio alike — and their massive success will mark a turning point for the American musical underground. “There were moments when R.E.M., my former band, were hugely popular,” says ex-singer Michael Stipe. “And we were able to really push the boundaries of what's acceptable within mainstream culture. KCRW and Deirdre and ‘SNAP!’ were doing the same thing.” Stipe was a close friend of Deirdre’s, and of the countless bands who passed through their orbit. He gave Concrete Blonde their name; produced Vic Chesnutt’s first two albums; and introduced Deirdre to Hugo Largo, which led to their signing with Brian Eno’s record label. In this episode, Stipe reflects on his life in LA in the mid-’80s, at a time when he and Deirdre were kindred spirits.


Bent By Nature - Ep. 7: Ages of You

In the mid-1980s, two young women are coming of age in the San Fernando Valley. In a few years, when they’re teenagers, they’ll both latch onto DJ Deirdre O’Donoghue, for totally different reasons. Felicia Daniel becomes obsessed with the new music Deirdre is playing on “SNAP!” Her best friend, Tanja Laden, gets into Deirdre’s deep-dives into the past on her Sunday morning show, “Breakfast with the Beatles.” On this week’s episode of “Bent By Nature,” we pay tribute to the listeners, whom Deirdre called “the heart and soul of ‘SNAP!’” It’s a story about two young women finding their way as outsiders, and the courage that music gives us to imagine our futures.


Bent By Nature - Ep. 6: Crossing Over (with David Lowery)

It’s New Year’s Eve, 1986. Deirdre is talking with the LA Times’ music critic, Robert Hilburn, about the musical trends of 1985. Deirdre O’Donoghue: I don't think that the big, quote-unquote, "rock" stations can very much longer ignore the growing numbers of people who are listening to alternative radio stations all around the country ... with which you're seeing album sales, at least on a smaller level, but it's making a bump. Among the acts Deirdre discovered that year was a crew of self-described “pot-smoking hippies from Santa Cruz.” Camper Van Beethoven lit up the college circuit in 1985 with their breakout single, “Take the Skinheads Bowling.” And they quickly became one of Deirdre’s firm favorites. David Lowery is Camper Van Beethoven’s guitarist and de facto frontman. He explains that Deirdre’s show was just one taproot for a larger movement which was spreading across the country in the mid-’80s. In this episode of “Bent By Nature,” he shares how the band navigated their own transition from indie darlings to major-label recording artists.


Bent By Nature - Ep. 5: Haywire (with Kathy McCarty & Brian Beattie)

It’s Independence Day Weekend, 1988. And Deirdre is celebrating the return of Glass Eye, her favorite independent act from Austin, Texas. They’ve just released their third album, “Bent By Nature.” But Deirdre’s allegiance to the band went much deeper than a catchy title. For her, they represented the very best of what Austin had to offer, which at the time also included “SNAP!” staples like the Reivers, the Wild Seeds, and Poi Dog Pondering. Glass Eye’s two principals, Kathy McCarty and Brian Beattie, say that whenever Glass Eye came to LA, Deirdre welcomed them with open arms and a sincere appreciation of their own bent nature.


Bent By Nature - Ep. 4: Almost Magic (with Syd Straw)

It’s September 4, 1986. And Deirdre has just met a kindred spirit in singer Syd Straw. Like Deirdre, Syd traveled in good company. You could pick out her voice on records by Los Lobos, Rickie Lee Jones, Was (Not Was), and more. As an early member of the indie supergroup The Golden Palominos, she was a feature on Deirdre’s playlists long before she became a regular guest. Most artists that appeared on “SNAP!” will tell you how comfortable Deirdre made them feel. That absolutely resulted in fantastic on-air performances. But Syd and Deirdre took that to a whole new level. If Deirdre had an official partner-in-crime, it was Syd Straw, who appeared on the show five times. She would sing with a band, or over backing tapes that she brought with her, or she would just guest DJ. And no topic was off limits. They had their own wild chemistry: funny, fearless, and more than a little bent. In 1989, Syd struck out on a solo career which eventually took her to New York City. But even now, Syd is rich with memories of the pioneering DJ and friend whom she called “The Godmother.”


Bent By Nature - Ep. 3: Inside Out (with David and Bekki Newton)

In 1988, while most of the music world was fawning over Morrissey’s solo debut, Deirdre O’Donoghue was all-in on a new record from a lesser-known English band: The Mighty Lemon Drops. After years of support on “SNAP!,” their single “Inside Out” blew up in the U.S., becoming a college rock anthem and MTV staple that launched the band into pop consciousness and amphitheater tours. The Lemon Drops’ guitarist David Newton and his wife Bekki join us to discuss the strange twists and turns which brought them together, with Deirdre in tow, as the Lemon Drops reached their ascendancy.


Bent By Nature - Ep. 2: Music Could Be Your Whole Life

In episode two of Bent By Nature, co-producer Bob Carlson explores the life of influential and enigmatic DJ Deirdre O’Donoghue behind the mic. Born in New York City and DJing across the country before landing at KCRW to host "SNAP!", O’Donoghue didn’t talk much about her past or private life — even in the face of personal demons, and eventually, her deteriorating health. But O’Donoghue’s fierce passion for music manifested in close friendships with those who came through her studio and beyond, from artists like Michael Stipe and Julian Cope, to record store owners, to young station volunteers she nurtured and mentored. Even amidst a kind of self-appointed solitude, O’Donoghue devoted herself to those she chose to let in, coming to the aid of artists in dire straits and offering solace within her record-filled apartment alongside a cup of tea and her cherished pet birds. Her presence could, and did, change lives. Here, some of O’Donoghue’s closest friends, including Concrete Blonde’s Johnette Napolitano, Tricia Halloran, and the late Pat Fish of Jazz Butcher, reflect on O’Donoghue’s life away from the studio and the many stories they shared.


The Jesus & Mary Chain

Scottish fraternal duo The Jesus & Mary Chain were the enfants terribles of the indie world in 1985 and 1986, known as much for their pointed hostility towards the press as for their chaotic and cacophonous sound. The band touched down at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium on Easter Sunday, 1986, in support of their now-classic debut, “Psychocandy.” Deirdre met up with the brothers Jim and William Reid backstage for a brief pre-show chat and found all the rumors to be true … although matters...


Bent By Nature - Ep. 1: This Is 'SNAP!'

Before Soundcloud and Bandcamp, there was Deirdre O'Donoghue and "SNAP!," the LA DJ and radio show that served as a waypoint for underground music, artists, and its fans — and helped shape the sound of independent and D.I.Y. culture today. In the first episode of "Bent By Nature," co-producer Bob Carlson introduces O’Donoghue and goes inside the community she cultivated, her passion for music, and the problems she had with KCRW’s management and staff. Featuring archival live performances by Camper Van Beethoven, the Meat Puppets, Glass Eye, Jazz Butcher, the Dream Syndicate, and more.


Bent By Nature: Trailer

She was the most influential American DJ you’ve never heard of. Deirdre O’Donoghue was a vital force in the musical underground of the 1980s. Countless artists crammed into her studio to perform live on her late-night show, “SNAP!” on KCRW. And after 40 years, those legendary sessions will be heard again. Join Michael Stipe, Henry Rollins, Julian Cope, and more for a sound-packed series from the producers of Lost Notes and Unfictional transporting you to the heyday of ‘80s independent music and the DJ who shaped it.


Lost Notes: 1980 - Ep. 7: Grace Jones

In 1980, anti-disco sentiment was at a high and Grace Jones was coming off a trilogy of disco albums. If she stayed stagnant, it felt like her career could be swept away. And so out of disco’s death rattle – driven by the discomfort of white male tastemakers – Grace Jones rose, reinforced and reimagined in a new decade freshly obsessed with risk.


Lost Notes: 1980 - Ep. 6: Minnie Riperton

Most know Minnie Riperton because of one part in one song. “Lovin’ You” was Riperton’s biggest hit, and she doesn’t sing that magic, piercing note until around the 3-minute mark. Cancer took Riperton away tragically in 1979, and the next year producers got to work on a posthumous album. Filled with leftover recordings and celebrity cameos, “Love Lives Forever” is an album full of ghosts.


Lost Notes: 1980 - Ep. 5: Hugh Masekela & Miriam Makeba

In December of 1980, two exiled artists and freedom fighters attempted return to their home in South Africa for a concert. Jazz musician Hugh Masekela and singer Miriam Makeba were briefly married, but they had a robust collaborative relationship that stretched across multiple decades. The 1980 concert wound up happening in neighboring Lesotho — and the performance became about defiance, namely against the Apartheid government in South Africa. But a recording mishap meant the concert needed to be recorded in a more intimate, perhaps even better, setting.