Steve Porcaro is a founding member of the Grammy award-winning rock group Toto. Steve is about to release his first solo album “Someday/Somehow” and begin a tour with Toto, which comes to the Arcada Theatre in St. Charles on August 13. Steve’s album features songs written over the last 30-plus years, and we discussed where the songs came from, how his writing process has evolved over the years, and different songwriting modes when composing for yourself or your band versus another artist (Steve co-wrote “Human Nature” on Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” LP).Follow @bigwakeupcall
Missi Pyle has been in every movie and TV show I’ve ever seen, including the new series “Sing It!,” which can be seen exclusively on YouTube Red. We discussed the premise of the show, how their fake “show within a show” singing competition is actually going to have a winner voted on by the viewers of “Sing It!,” and how her mere appearance on our show gained us at least a hundred new Twitter followers.
Geoffrey Zakarian is an Iron Chef and one of the stars of “The Kitchen” on Food Network, my favorite way to start a Saturday morning. In fact, with GZ’s appearance (and he was totally fine with me calling him GZ), I’ve now interviewed 4/5 of the panel with Jeff Mauro being the only holdout. [Jeff! Come do our show!] GZ called in with some expert grilling tips just in time for the unofficial kickoff of barbecue season this Memorial Day Weekend.
Randy Bachman is a rock and roll legend: a member of The Guess Who, Bachman Turner Overdrive and an accomplished solo artist. His newest album is “Heavy Blues,” and he’s running a contest right now with Vintage Guitar magazine where you can win some cool gear and the change to rock out with Randy in person. We discussed his new album, the promotion, sharing riffs, and generally geeked out about guitars.Follow @bigwakeupcall
Jim Breuer is a comedian, actor and rock and roll frontman for The Loud and Rowdy who are releasing their first full-length album this week, “Songs from the Garage,” on Metal Blade records. We talked about the correlation between comedy and heavy metal, how he’s managed to preserve his voice despite years of Rob Halford and Brian Johnson impersonations (not to mention doing Goat Boy), and why he thinks his new live show will be “The Wiggles for Adults.”Follow @bigwakeupcall
Susan Sarandon is an Academy Award-winning actress who is currently starring in the new movie “The Meddler.” We discussed her character in the film, the amazing supporting cast (including fellow Oscar winner J.K. Simmons), and whether or not her status an executive producer on the film gave her a weightier status on the set. We also shared stories of winning awards (since I won a Listener’s Choice radio award, we’re practically equal peers in the industry).Follow @bigwakeupcall
Chonda Pierce is a platinum-selling, Emmy-nominated comedian. Her documentary “Laughing In The Dark” is now out on DVD, and she’s also hosting a series of stand-up specials on The Dove Channel called “Chonda Pierce: Standing Up For Families.” We had a very fun chat about the making of the film, how comedy is one of the best reflections of a specific time and place, and how we should start out all interviews by listing a guest’s full resume as it really makes them feel accomplished.
Emmy Award-winning actress Jane Lynch is about to launch her cabaret tour, “See Jane Sing,” which comes to Chicago at the Lyric Opera Stage on June 17th and 18th. We talked about how she carries her Chicago theater background with her wherever she goes, what kind of show we’ll see at the Lyric Opera, and how often I quote one of her signature lines from “Role Models.”Follow @bigwakeupcall