The Radio Show

Roy Book Binder

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The Radio Show Review

by Jeff Burger

If you've ever seen country bluesman Roy Book Binder in concert, you know he's just as engaging when he's talking to the audience as he is when he picks up the guitar and starts to sing. If you haven't been lucky enough to see him in person, this copy of a July 1999 public radio broadcast from East Tennessee State University is the next best thing. For nearly an hour, Book Binder talks with the show's host about his music, influences, guitars, motor home, and whatever else pops into his mind. Book Binder comes across as charming, entertaining, and frequently funny. However -- and it's a big "however" -- you have to wonder how many times the average listener is going to want to listen to an interview. There are a few songs here, including Blind Boy Fuller's "Rag Mama," Pink Anderson's "Travelin' Man," and a couple of originals. But the spoken material dominates and the tunes are available on other Book Binder releases. Your best bet might be to buy those other releases and try to borrow this one from a friend or library. The conversation is great fun on first listen, but once is enough.