On this West Virginia Morning, a weekend of comedy kicks off Thursday in Morgantown. Now in its second year, the Red Eye Comedy Festival is not only highlighting the state’s nascent comedy community, but also attracting national talent to the region.
I discovered The Bird and The Bee through a covers site, and heard their version of the Roth-era Van Halen classic “Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love.”
I was smitten.
I love the irony, humor, disposition of musical elements of a good cover song, but this was something else: this was a true tribute. This was love.
But first, we must step back in time.
It’s no hyperbole to say that in 1978, Van Halen’s self-titled debut album split the rock world in two. Eddie Van Halen was the most prodigious and game-changing electric guitarist since our beloved Jimi Hendrix. It was like hearing a jet plane take off and leaving all the copycats, who were to follow in their wake, as mere shadows of the VH craftmanship of chops, songwriting with great hooks and charisma.
Enter The Bird and the Bee forty one years later. (NB: Inara was ten years old when “1984” was released and thought Panama was about the Panama Canal. The videos she saw were “both terrifying and exciting.” Check longer interview.)
Formed in 2005, when Greg Kurstin was hired to assist with her first solo album, All Rise, they “just clicked over musical interests” and “we wrote a couple of songs together and maybe we’ll see if somebody else wants to play them.” The rest, as it said, is history.
The Bird and the Bee will be featured on this week’s Eclectopia radio program. Listen to Eclectopia on WVPB Radio Fridays at 10 pm, with an encore Saturdays at 11 pm.
Broadcast interview with Inara George from December 2016, plus bonus Q&As about Panama, Hot For Teacher, Beck and other good stuff.
On March 9, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson signed a bill creating the Appalachian Regional Commission, known as the ARC. The agency’s goal was to bring impoverished areas of Appalachia into the mainstream American economy. While the ARC serves parts of 13 states, West Virginia is the only one that lies entirely within the boundaries of Appalachia.
On January 26, 1960, 17-year-old guard Danny Heater of Burnsville High School scored a record-breaking 135 points in a basketball game against Widen High School. He easily shattered the previous state high school record of 74 and the national record of 120.