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New Year's Special - Day One - Off The Road Story and Performance Highlights - 2021

Browse and hear the complete Off The Road series at hawaiipublicradio.org/offtheroad.

After 31 episodes — including two guests who each were on twice — HPR’s All Things Considered Host Dave Lawrence is offering up a Second Annual Off The Road New Year’s Special: Story and Performance Highlights. Without question, there were a lot of great stories told, and incredible performances offered, just for us. But over two days, we’re sharing some of our favorite, fun moments of storytelling, and some of our favorite exclusive performances, from this wide range of musicians and musical genres.

We started the series in April 2020 after the pandemic shut down the touring entertainment industry. On All Things Considered over the last decade, most weeks we had musical and entertainment guests, often touring artists, with concerts here in the islands. But it came to an end, as all live shows and tours were cancelled or postponed. Sadly, before starting the new remote interviews that would become the series, we featured artist flashbacks to conversations related to artists passing on from COVID-19 during the start of the crisis: Manu Dibango, Adam Schlesinger of Fountains of Wayne, and Ellis Marsalis.

The series began thanks to a one-off phone conversation with Jack Johnson in April 2020, the first musical guest in weeks after all touring came to a halt around the world. From there, a series developed organically, and has featured artists from across the musical spectrum, and continued through 2021 as the pandemic has largely kept national and international touring artists from performing in the islands. Hear the first Off The Road Story and Performance Highlights Special - day one and day two.

As was the case last year, while we did get a lot of gripping pandemic-related stories, none of those factor into this special, which is all fun, upbeat, mostly classic stories, and again some truly inspirational music – all the songs are huge epics, known and loved around the world.

First, a celebration of everyone we had this year on the show! What a list for 2021, in chronological order and linked so you can hear their Off The Road episode, complete interviews and other embedded media:

Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Heart’s Nancy Wilson, Foreigner’s Jeff Pilson, Peter Frampton, Bonnie Raitt’s James “Hutch” Hutchinson, The Doors’ John Densmore, Herb Alpert, Hall and Oates’ John Oates, America’s Gerry Beckley, Jethro Tull’s Martin Barre, Stray Cats’ Lee Rocker, Carlos Santana, Buffalo Springfield / Poco’s Richie Furay, Stax Records / Booker T. and The M.G.’s Steve Cropper, Heart’s Anne Wilson, Heart’s Nancy Wilson (again!), Doobie Brothers’ Patrick Simmons, Soul Asylum’s Dave Pirner, Peter Frampton (again!), Dumpstaphunk / Neville Brothers’ Ivan Neville, concert promoter Danny Zelisko, John McLaughlin, 10,000 Maniacs’ Mary Ramsey, Taj Mahal, Judy Collins, The Police’s Andy Summers, Black Uhuru’s Derrick “Duckie” Simpson, Pat Metheny, Herb Alpert (again!), Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Artimus Pyle, and Deep Purple’s Don Airey.

Day One of our special includes three of the many guests we’re grateful to have had: Peter Frampton, Doobie Brothers’ Patrick Simmons and Herb Alpert.

artist photo credit Austin Lord

We were grateful to have Peter Frampton join us twice in 2021, first sharing stories from his incredible Do You Feel Like I Do autobiography, and later stories connected to his all-covers instrumental album, Frampton Forgets The Words. For our special, we include his incredible story about working with Beatle George Harrison from his first appearance in February!

Andrew MacPherson

Pat Simmons of the Doobie Brothers returned with a hilarious story about the various musicians that late publicist and Hawaii resident David Gest connected him to, including Michael Jackson and Al Green! Pat also performed a solo acoustic version of one of the Doobie Brothers biggest hits – a song he wrote – Black Water!

artist photo Dewey Nicks

We wrapped up day one with one of the selections the great Herb Alpert offered during the first of his two appearances on Off The Road this year, speaking about the documentary and boxed set Herb Alpert Is. He performed his classic Rise!

Tomorrow we’ll have more of our favorite stories and performances as we get ready to welcome 2022, and we’re pulling out all the stops! Don’t miss it!

Browse and hear the complete Off The Road series at hawaiipublicradio.org/offtheroad.

Dave Lawrence is the local host of All Things Considered, Road Stories (formerly Off the Road), and Stargazer.
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