Meet the Team at CultureSonar
Al Cattabiani publishes CultureSonar and has always worked in and around the arts. His companies have generally focused on music, indie/foreign film, documentaries and holistic living. Over the years, he has released well over 1,000 titles, including many Oscar, Grammy and Emmy winners. Although playing guitar has never been his Day Job, quite rightly, he’s been gigging steadily for years — and is an avid fan.
Cindy Grogan is a longtime freelance writer, having worked in a ton of different industries, writing a ton of different things. Her background in radio is a natural fit for her love of music – anything from the Beatles to Hank Williams, Sr. to Prokofiev. A rabid consumer of pop culture and politics, Cindy finds the smartass tendencies that once got her grounded now serve her well in Facebook arguments. Oh, and she also loves cats.
Ken Hymes is a writer and recording artist living in Richmond VA. He’s been gigging and making albums more or less under the radar for three decades. Latest output is the neo-swing album Inside Voice, available in the usual places. If you have an old copy of the original Night of the Living Dead, you may have heard his music for the parody film Night of the Living Bread.
Don Klees has spent many years in the video business. This continues to enrich his life in many ways, chief among them being able to tell people he watches television for a living. An avid consumer of pop – and sometimes not-so-popular – culture, his spare time is devoted to putting his film production degree to use on a documentary about the old-time radio cult-classic Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar.
Andrea White is a freelance writer and former TV news producer with a few too many obsessions. These include, but are not limited to: sports, travel, period pieces, movies & TV, news & politics, and anything British. She may technically be a millennial, but has been told she has an “old soul.”
Jeffrey Bukowski obsesses on the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and his cat Prince (That was his name at the shelter! Swear!), The Beatles, Smokey Robinson and the Replacements every day of the week as well as Folk Rock and culture war art thrice a week plus every other Sunday. Seeing how this leaves little time for actual productivity, he’s trying to write about all these things — and more — and make it pay. Twitter: @JeffreyBukowsk1
David Stewart writes a lot of stuff, mostly songs. If you’re a fan of alt/indie country, you may have heard some of them — or if you’ve ever squinted your ears really, really hard listening to the background music of shows like True Blood. Given that the paychecks for this do not tend towards the exorbitant, it’s nice that David has actually won real American cash money by remembering useless information on both Jeopardy and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire.
Emmy Potter is a Midwestern-born, New York City-based actor, writer, producer, Anglophile, guacamole-enthusiast, and devoted Kansas City Royals fan. She owns two sonic screwdrivers, has read Harry Potter more times than she can count, and can quote Jaws and Jurassic Park with 100% accuracy. When she’s not flexing her nerd muscles, she’s most likely writing about film, TV, comedy, and/or theatre for a number of online publications/websites or riding her bicycle around the tri-state area like the Spielberg film child-protagonist she always aspired to be. Twitter: @emmylanepotter
Josh Turner is a multi-instrumentalist, singer, composer, arranger and producer. His YouTube channel has over 150,000 subscribers and 30 million views. He wanders across diverse genres, including Folk, Jazz, Bluegrass, Classic Rock, Celtic, Indie and Classical. He started playing at 13, in his native Indianapolis, when his PlayStation 2 was confiscated. He also loves food, wine and his cat.
Bob Condren is a freelance writer who fell in love with rock ‘n roll at an early age, hypnotized by a transistor radio blaring Top 40 hits under his pillow. He is an unrepentant record collector, movie buff and lifelong baseball fan who can’t wait to take his grandkids to their first Cubs game. Still holding out hope for an Office reunion show. Twitter: @BobCondre
Larry Sapadin lives over in Boomertown, where Culture and Politics converge. He studied filmmaking but ended up an entertainment lawyer and has been working in film distribution for about 20 years. Before that, he was a leader in the creation of the ITVS, which funds documentaries for public TV.
Stephen Harty hangs around at the busy intersection of culture, commerce and politics. He’s led some of the country’s most creative ad agencies, worked in both federal and city governments and is currently a trustee of a liberal arts college. He makes his living as a consultant and lecturer.
Sean Redlitz is a media omnivore and former digital director for many of your favorite cable networks, including Food Network, IFC, Bravo and the channel formerly known as Sci-Fi. Twitter: @TheRedlitz
Gleana Albritton is a pop-culture enthusiast obsessed with watching great TV shows. When she’s not busy writing or trying to convince you to watch some new show with one of her marketing campaigns, you can find her wandering the streets of West LA with her young dog, Ginger, a rambunctious chiweenie (chihuahua-daschund). Follow some of Gleana’s adventures in LA on IG or Twitter: @MsGlea
Kat Choe is an actor, writer, singer, Anglophile, Francophile, and a native New Yorker passionate about preserving good pizza. A lover of all things geeky, knitting, and a good bottle of Cerasuollo di Vittoria (sometimes all at the same time), she can quote Star Wars and various animated films at the drop of a hat. Kat can be found in the stacks of a library, having a nerdfest with a group of chums, on a food adventure, or running after shiny objects. Twitter: @Kchoester
Alexis Rhiannon is a freelance writer and comedian who grew up in Portland, Oregon, and is now located in New York City. Her interests include long-form improv, bar trivia, pop culture conspiracies, and someday cleaning her apartment. On Instagram, she follows multiple restaurants she’s never been to and dogs she’s never met, and feels pretty good about her choices. Twitter: @mindtheclam
There might not be a rock star Joe Bosso hasn’t interviewed. Over the years, he’s contributed to Guitar World, Guitar Aficionado, Premier Guitar, Drum, Classic Rock, Music Aficionado and even a local penny saver or two. A former VP of A&R for Island Records, Joe has also written for TV shows such as The Sopranos and The Chris Isaak Show. He lives in New Jersey with his wife and family, as well as an adorable Bichon Frise named Harry.
Cate Harty is cappuccino aficionado, die hard Francophile, amateur pianist, news junkie and fancier of felines. Cate earned her chops on Madison Avenue as an advertising Account Director and Strategic Planner for some of the world’s most iconic brands. Now a freelance writer, she is currently studying pop culture gemology and is pleased to put her finely honed skills to work identifying the shiniest bits to bring to CultureSonar.
Resa Alboher is one of the founding editors of St. Petersburg Review, on the editorial board of Springhouse Journal, back in LA and in culture shock after a few decades living and travelling in Russia and is currently writing fiction and nonfiction about this Russian adventure and about other adventures as well. Twitter: @resochka
Peter Jesperson has been a music fanatic all his life. Originally from Minneapolis, he began in the music business in 1972 distributing UK rock weekly the NME; ran record store Oar Folkjokeopus ‘73–83; co-founded Twin/Tone Records in 1977; discovered and signed The Replacements in 1980, also co-producing and managing the band; was VP A&R/Production/Catalog for LA-based New West Records 1999-2016. These days Peter freelances in music production, consulting and writing.
Ken Goldstein has served as CEO of SHOP.COM, Executive Vice President & Managing Director of Disney Online, and VP / Executive Publisher of Broderbund Software. He currently advises start-ups and established companies on brands, creative talent, e-commerce, and digital media strategy. Ken is on the boards of Thrift Books Global and Good Men Media. He publishes the business blog CorporateIntel.us and his first book, This Is Rage: A Novel of Silicon Valley and Other Madness, was published in 2013 by The Story Plant. His second book, Endless Encores, was published by The Story Plant in 2015.
Mick Perry has been a video producer and editor for over 20 years, but in his heart (and mind) he’s a farmer, chef and woodworker. After graduating from art school, Mick decided that the whole starving-artist thing wasn’t nearly as cool as it seemed (mostly because Mick likes to eat), so he started a search for another industry that accepts insane people. He found it in entertainment, where Mick is considered to be nearly normal.
John Montagna is a bass guitarist, singer, songwriter (but not a “singer-songwriter”) and Brooklyn Native. He has toured the world and elsewhere with Alan Parsons, Todd Rundgren, The Turtles (featuring Flo & Eddie) and many other legendary hit makers, and he created the theme music for the top-rated comedy podcast “WTF With Marc Maron.” John prefers to view his all-consuming obsession with The Beatles as an asset, rather than a liability.
Harold Bronson co-founded the Rhino Records label, and co-ran the company with Richard Foos for 24 years. Rhino has been considered the best reissue label in the world. He oversaw the Rhino Books division as well as Rhino Films, executive producing the Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas and Why Do Fools Fall In Love feature films. In his twenties, Bronson wrote about pop music for the UCLA Daily Bruin, Los Angeles Times, L.A. Free Press, Rolling Stone and various music magazines. Bronson’s most recent books are The Rhino Records Story and My British Invasion.
Patrick Foley has been involved in music in many capacities including work as a producer and engineer, studio manager, and as Worldwide Artist Relations Director for Gibson Guitar Co. Over the years, he’s been based in Detroit, LA, London and Nashville. He spent five years in Montserrat where he produced sessions at AIR Studios then set up his own studio catering to Reggae and Calypso musicians from across the Caribbean. He currently lives in Nashville where he is artist relations manager for Orange Amplifiers and continues to spend time in the recording studio whenever possible. Twitter: @sunburst58
Mike Michel is a veteran touring and recording artist based out of Minneapolis, Minnesota. He’s just released a new recording with Think Piece Publishing called “On The Mend.” It is dedicated to raising awareness for tinnitus, hyperacusis, and mental health. Mike can be reached at www.mikemichelmusic.com or www.thinkpiecepublishing.com. Twitter: @mikemichelmusic
Ian Brennan is a Grammy-winning music producer (Tinariwen, Zomba Prison Project, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott) and the author of four books including his latest, How Music Dies (or Lives): Field-recording and the battle for democracy in the arts.
Mark Grenier has taught acting and improv classes for over a decade. An actor, improviser, writer, and filmmaker, he eats red meat, texts while he walks, and once faked his own death in the Catskill Mountains. Twitter: @marksgrenier
Tommy Zimmer is a writer whose work has appeared online and in print. His work covers a variety of topics including politics, economics, health and wellness, addiction and recovery, and the entertainment industry.
Sarah Beauchamp is a writer, editor, and redheaded stepchild living in Brooklyn. She writes about entertainment and pop culture for Vanity Fair, The Daily Beast, The Huffington Post, and Nylon. Interests include murder documentaries, the Kardashians, Kristen Stewart’s current relationship, the emotional well being of Jojo The Bachelorette, eating carbs, and never leaving the house. Twitter: @freelanceginger
John Lorenz spent a career in the TV distribution world doing program licensing and production for broadcast and home media. His parallel musical highway is bestrewn with Farfisa organs, DX synths, violins, Telecasters, and accordions.
Robert Burke Warren is a writer, performer, and musician. He’s traveled the world as a bass player, played the lead in the West End musical Buddy: the Buddy Holly Story, and had his songs performed by Rosanne Cash, the Roots, and rockabilly queen Wanda Jackson. His writing is widely available online, and his debut novel Perfectly Broken is available now.
Tim Kinley is a longtime disciple of the Mothership Connection and spends way too much time copping duplicate copies of Parliament-Funkadelic albums. Documentaries, CD compilations and other Funky projects also distract him from paying utility bills, which results in his cell phone bill not being paid on time.
Donald Cohen is a long-time organizer for social justice who is always on the hunt for great music. An early Dead-head he’s moved on to exploring today’s new music (from folk to indie to blues to whatever Alabama Shakes and Lake Street Dive do) – a decade he thinks is the best era in music since before disco. In his spare time he is helping to develop the Autism Creatives Collective, a community of talented creative writers, artists and musicians on the austistic spectrum who support each other in their creative endeavors. During the day, he runs a non-profit think tank called In the Public Interest. His opinion pieces and articles have appeared in the New York Times, Reuters, the Los Angeles Times, The New York Daily News, The New Republic, and other online and print outlets. Twitter for music: @donaldrcohen12
Mark Ricotta is a writer, idea architect, and enthusiast of fine music, from Bruce to Brahms. He has written for the Illinois Entertainer and the former Rockford Area Music Magazine. He spent much of his career as an advertising copywriter and marketing strategist, and now, as a recovering cancer patient with myriad medical conditions, he gets tremendous joy from connecting to his readers by sharing personal experiences related to music that have inspired, influenced and animated him in his lifetime.. .and still do.
Shane Nicholson is an editor, writer and designer plying his trade in the mid-size weekly newspaper market these days. Occasionally he gets to write about fun things like music and arts, but typically it’s corrupt government officials or mundane city business. He used to play guitar at a bar near you but now holds his shows only for the birds on his patio.
Larry Vazeos is a visual artist and writer who lives in the United States. He is left handed and has never had to wear glasses.
Maitland McDonagh is a longtime writer and editor with credits ranging from Film Comment to TVGuide.com and is the founder of 120 Days Books, a small press dedicated to republishing vintage gay erotic novels. Her interests range from classical ballet to zombies and she firmly believes that there is no such thing as a guilty pleasure. Twitter: @maitlandm
Carol Steinel is an itinerant comic, actress, musician, writer, and construction contractor who successfully salvaged her own soul despite her attempts to have it all. She was inducted into the Oregon Music Hall of Fame as one of the guitarists for the Neo Boys almost completely by accident, and currently resides in one of the least anarchic states in the Union. Twitter: @CSteinel
Michael Rays is a guitar gadfly, author, tennis nut, amateur psychoanalyst, wannabe statistician and the world’s first rocksolographer. He searches for interesting guitar and music topics lying in plain sight, and he searches for food the same way. He lives in Billings, Montana, where he runs an advertising agency. Twitter: @michaelraysgo
Will Wills — a native-born Italian, raised in the US — does a killer impersonation of Mario (“a-letsa-go!”). Generally, you’ll find him frenetically bouncing between software development at a large US firm, leading a local dance/pop band, playing COD and watching MST3K. Yes, he’s sleep deprived, but you can follow his resulting incoherence at @WillrWills or his band at @WillsAndTheWays or his blog if you’re suffering from insomnia, too.
Jeffrey Peisch is on the back stretch of a 30+ year career in the music, TV and home video industries, with stints at MTV, USA Today, Sony Music, and Time Life. A recent empty-nester, he’s started playing piano after a long layoff, and is pretty comfortable playing “Killing Me Softly,” “Que Sera Sera” and “Fly Me to the Moon.”
John Visconti is a lifelong music and movies aficionado with wide-ranging tastes. He’s also the go-to guy when his friends have trivia questions they can’t answer regarding pop culture. You’ll likely run into him in his home state of Connecticut at craft beer/bistro venues or various-sized concert halls. Check out his blog, John V’s Eclectic Avenue.
Jim Beviglia is a freelance journalist and author who lives in Old Forge, PA with his wife, Marie, and daughter, Daniele. Since they’ve long since tuned out his long-winded opinions about the greatest songs in music history, he writes about them instead. Twitter: @JimBeviglia
Colin Eldred-Cohen is the publisher of FishAndCherries.com. He is also putting his writing talents to use working on his first novel (that he hopes will be a best seller, made into an Oscar-winning movie and a line of happy meal toys) and his filmmaking skills to use in a webseries called Ronin’s Rants.
Colm Clark is a freelance writer, musician and composer (a.k.a. Crush Limbo) whose music has appeared in TV and film and whose songs have been sung on New York theater stages. Despite all this (if posts to social media are any indication), his proudest recent accomplishment was getting a backyard fire started with wet logs. Twitter: @malstranger
Brooke Nalle is the founder of sleepy on hudson – a pediatric sleep consultancy. She grew up in a family that thrived on culture from Sunday trips to see weird super-off-off-Broadway plays (so far off, they were in Washington DC), countless excursions to see the collection at the National Gallery of Art where her mother was a docent, to the latest and greatest music with her father (her mother doesn’t like noise). She studied Art History and briefly pursued a career in archeology.
Rosemary Harris has worked in public television, home video and direct marketing but her all-time favorite job was as a bookstore manager in Brooklyn New York. She is the author of the Agatha and Anthony-nominated Dirty Business mystery series, past president of Sisters in Crime New England and Mystery Writers of America, New York. Her latest book is The Bitches of Brooklyn, about which she knows a thing or two.
Elizabeth Rose’s 1-woman musical comedy, “Relative Pitch,” was produced by NY’s Cherry Lane Theatre. She sang the national anthem opening a METS game, toured with “Beatlemania,” has been a blues guitar slinger here and abroad and has written songs for tv and film. Her cd “Sleep Naked” has received international air play. “Yo Miz,” her teaching memoir, is a triple award-winner. Despite this, she still craves inordinate amounts of attention which explains why her quarter horse, Sophie, is given to prodigious yawning.
Evan Gelb is a (relatively recent) Duke University graduate currently working as an assistant in scripted television development in Los Angeles. Aside from being a living embodiment of the fact that one cannot watch too much TV, he’s also obsessed with film, music, technology and DUKE BASKETBALL. He’s done nothing particular of note, but hopes to change that in the future.
Celey Schumeris an actress, comedian, and writer. Her degrees in physics (Middlebury College) and structural engineering (University of Washington) look very impressive while they collect dust. She is disturbingly good at Friends trivia, and she was definitely not eating chocolate as she wrote this. Twitter: @CeleySchumer
Julie Schneyer is a freelance writer and editor who used to be a trade magazine editor and a newspaper staffer. She has written about contract furnishings, facility management, lighting design and now, television. She loves good writing, the Sunday New York Times, getting wrapped up in great TV shows, the beach, sunsets, and skiing.
Allison Hadar is both a dabbler and a devotee of the arts, lending her heart and mind to several projects including a photography book (PRIME), a short film (How Was Your Day?) and a lifestyle blog for women over 40 (www.theprimebook.wordpress.com). She’s a native New Yorker, a mom and a dog person.
Catherine Wing is a comedy performer and writer, born and raised in New York City. You can see her perform with her musical improv team, Goats, on Tuesday nights at the Magnet Theater. She also beams onstage with Redshirts, the only all-women Star Trek: The Next Generation inspired musical improv comedy team in the known universe. She lives with at least a dozen puppets. Twitter & Instagram: @CatherineKWing
Erica L. Moffett is a writer who also works as Managing Director at Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. When she is not writing or working in the office, she can be found swimming, or running or reading or going out to soak up the cultural life in NYC where she is based. She just published her first children’s book, Erica from America: Swimming from Europe to Africa, and additional writings and essays of hers can be found at her blog, www.ericafromamerica.com or look for her on Twitter @ericalmoffett.
Jim Allen‘s night job is fronting country band The Ramblin’ Kind, rock band Lazy Lions, and working as a solo singer/songwriter. His day job is writing about other people’s music. He has contributed to NPR, Billboard, RollingStone.com, and many more, and written liner notes for reissues of everyone from OMD to Bob Seger, but his proudest achievement is crafting a completely acceptable egg cream armed only with milk, Bosco, and a SodaStream seltzer maker.
John Troup is a longtime Nashvillian and lifelong Southerner who is fascinated by pop culture, history, rock and roll, jump, jazz, and the blues. He loves stories and storytellers as well as individuals with volatile and mercurial personalities. Twitter: @jstroup63
Holden McNeely writes and performs in a sketch comedy group called Murderfist in New York City, and he assures you that they’re as crude and vulgar as they sound. When he’s not on stage covered in fake blood for cheep laughs, he’s singing in his band The Cowmen, screaming at a microphone on the weekly podcast The Round Table of Gentlemen, or streaming video games on Twitch with his girlfriend Lexe. He’d like to send a shout out to his fan club the Holdenators. HOLDENATORS HOOOOOOOO! Website: holdenmcneely.com Twitter: @holdenators Twitch: holdenatorsho
Ovidiu Boar is a passionate music fan and writer looking to turn this hobby into a living. His tastes cover multiple genres such as rock, pop, hip-hop, soul, funk or metal, and he’s always open to new artists. He also doesn’t like referring to himself in the third person. You can go over to his blog at https://tangledupinmusic.com and tell him why his opinions are wrong. Or you can follow him on Twitter at @BoarOvidiu.
Brian Steele is a writer living in Los Angeles. He’s written and produced boatloads of comedy content for companies such as Funny Or Die, My Damn Channel, FreMantleMedia, Comic-Con HQ and TruTV. His byline has appeared on IFC.com, Splitsider, and The Interrobang. You can check out his work at HoltandSteele.com.
Jeff Finkle is a freelance writer and pop culture nut, living in NYC, who once wrote an article on the eternal search for the ultimate sub sandwich and has a strong passion for good and bad-but-still-good movies, TV, music and comedy. By day, he is a content manager for an advertising industry site and by night he can be found complaining about the Mets, catching up on DVR’d shows with his wife and retrieving tennis balls from under the couch while his dog impatiently waits. But, not necessarily in that order. Twitter: @JahFinkle
Greg Jones is the co-editor of EarToTheGroundMusic.co where he regularly covers Americana, folk, and roots country music. Additionally, he is a professional cultural historian with interests in the American military, sports, and music history. Follow his site on Twitter: @Eartothe_Ground
Tim Braine has had a long career as the executive producer of an eclectic collection of TV shows including sports, animated comedy, celebrity gossip, wildlife adventure, and the history of technology. Whether this variety is due to a wide range of talents or a lack of focus hard to say, but he’s probably best described as a “generalist.” He is currently working on a non profit venture to assist the New York City subway system, but still has enough time to march up and down the Hudson River listening to public radio programs, which is how a generalist entertains himself.
Matthew Greenwald has had a busy and checkered 20-year career as a musician, music journalist and general raconteur. Retiring for several years, CultureSonar resurrects him for better or worse. His current musical adventures call themselves The Mojo Two, based in San Clemente (but a safe distance from Nixon’s former Western White House).
Steven Casale is a writer, poet and wine consultant who isn’t as stuffy as all of those descriptors might imply. He frequently falls into bouts of wanderlust and likes to discover hidden cultural details. He is based in Brooklyn, NY (like many other people these days). Twitter: @stvncasale
Pamela Booker is an interdisciplinary writer and educator whose performance and academic writings explore social change, popular culture, race and identity. Recent enthusiasms are served-up as “savory conversations” on a range of urban green/sustainability topics. From time to time, she fantasizes on what life could be like for Scandal’s Olivia Pope farming in Vermont. Follow her monthly with the arrival of the new moon at greens4squares.com and on Twitter: @Pamelabookerpb
Laura Rebecca is writer, teacher, and tattooed bunny wrangler originally from NY and currently living in LA. She teaches yoga, drinks coffee and offers productivity tips and journals for sale on @thescriberyco. You can follow her there and on her personal twitter @dojogrl.
Lissa Townsend Rodgers moved from the Big Apple to Sin City over a decade ago and, like everyone else in town, wonders what she’s still doing there. She is editor-at-large at Vegas Seven magazine but often freelances around like a common trollop. She preferred Las Vegas when it had neon rather than LED and New York City when it had subway tokens instead of Uber Black.
Lynn Ann Kister is a self-described Jill of all Trades with a facile fluidity that ranges from dementia care training to small tree pruning, with a dash of cooking thrown in. She enjoys writing & meditating & would like to be doing more of both. She can belt out some jazz & blues & is an old time cow punk at heart. She lives in Seattle & is currently working on a poetry book & a book about a dead guy. You can follow her blog at lynnannkister.tumblr.com. Twitter: @sixcedars
Ellen Fagan is a forever New Yorker, long-time Greenwich Village resident and vintage Duke University graduate with hippie-esque leanings. The best description of Ellen was given to her by a sardonic lawyer during the voir dire of one of her myriad Jury Duty stints: “…housewife, mom, voracious reader, freelance writer, copy editor, jewelry designer and frequent cyber-sleuth.”
Rose Maura Lorre is an American writer currently living in Montreal, Canada. Her byline has appeared in The New York Times, Saveur, Esquire, Vulture, Dwell, Maxim, Salon, and many more. In past lives, she’s also worked as a restaurant critic, JV volleyball coach and trivia master, as well as a tour guide at her alma mater, Duke University. Her spirit animal is bourbon. Twitter: @
Kimber Myers handles business development between tech startups and media companies by day and writes film and TV reviews for The Playlist by night. Her earliest memory was watching The Wizard of Oz after falling down the stairs, and both her clumsiness and cinephilia have followed her into adulthood. Twitter: @
Pittsburgh native Regis Boff served as tour manager from everyone from Genesis to The Who and more. Needless to say, he has a ton of stories about the wilder days of rock. Follow him on Twitter: @regisboff.
Stephanie Brandhuber is a freelance film, arts, and culture writer based in London.Deciding to ignore childhood warnings that too much movie-watching would give her square eyes, she went on to gain a Master’s Degree in Film Studies from King’s College London and loves discussing the artistic merits of George Kuchar films with anyone who’ll listen. Other achievements include performing tight-rope in a French circus, successfully cooking a soufflé, and being able to do a moderately good Scottish accent. Twitter: @stephbranded
Bill Flanigin is a freelance writer who enjoys classic rock and crappy beer. Once a middle school English teacher, he left the profession after reading one too many essays on family trips to Disney. His kids are grown so he’s able to do lots of stuff now. Follow him on Twitter at @billyflan.
Michael Sarno has a bachelors degree in history so you know he takes the history of music seriously. An avid student of 20th-century rock, he spends his time writing/researching underappreciated stories and resurfacing unforgettable anecdotes. Michael currently resides in Boston and can be reached at MikeSarno27@Gmail.com and followed at @vanzkantdanz on Instagram.
Ken Womack is an internationally renowned Beatles authority regarding the band’s enduring artistic influence. He is the author of Maximum Volume: The Life of Beatles Producer George Martin (The Early Years: 1926-1966). The second volume in the series, entitled Sound Pictures: The Life of Beatles Producer George Martin (The Later Years, 1966-2016), is forthcoming in 2018. His previous Beatles-related books include Long and Winding Roads: The Evolving Artistry of the Beatles and The Beatles Encyclopedia: Everything Fab Four. You can learn more about Ken’s work at kennethwomack.com.
Anthony Robustelli is a singer-songwriter-multiinstrum
Erik Mattox is one of the founders of 103.3 Asheville FM, a low-power FM radio station in Asheville, NC. Since its inception in 2009, Erik has hosted “The UnCola” every Tuesday playing “Forgotten Pop from the Last 50 Years” and “The WestCoast Breeze” every Thursday since 2015. He is writing his first book called “How The West Was Smooth: The History Of West Coast Music” and lives in the mountains of Western North Carolina with his wife, Lisa and two children, Lucy and Theo. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Isa Freeling writes on art and culture for the Huffington Post, the New York Daily News, Artlyst, and Medium as well as CultureSonar. She’s planning on telling you about everything that will make you laugh, cry, be inspired, and want to applaud with your hands and feet.
Eoghan Lyng is an Irishman, but we won’t hold that against him. Writing credits include WeAreCult, The Playlist and The Irish Post. He now hopes to bring his love for esoteric pop to CultureSonar. He can be contacted @eoghanlyng on his Twitter page.
Kevin Ray Johnson is an actor-playwright in Brooklyn, who is best known for his coming-of-age drama The Unpredictable Times. Other works include A (Funny) Imagination! and Birdie & Tim as well as a gig performing King Lear with the Royal Shakespeare Company at Brooklyn Academy of Music.
Simon Glickman is the lead singer of The Ex Teens and also VP/Managing Editor of music-industry trade rag “HITS.” The L.A. native lives in Hollywood, California.
Candy Leonard is a sociologist with interests in media, gender politics, and health. Candy grew up immersed in ’60s pop culture and has spent most of her life thinking and writing about its impact on her generation. She’s the author of “Beatleness: How the Beatles and Their Fans Remade the World,” and has written for the Huffington Post and Next Avenue. Candy is a qualitative research consultant to progressive campaigns and claims to be the coolest grandmother in America. Twitter: @CandySez.
Solomon Peck Jr. a.k.a. Solomon the Artisté is a native of Queens, New York who thrives as a singer, songwriter, producer, and actor. He is co-founder of NYC-based independent record label The Label Noir. Twitter: @SolomonArtiste
Johnny J. Blair “Singer at Large” is a recording artist, entertainer, producer, and occasional journalist and radio host. As a musician, he has worked with Davy Jones and The Monkees, David Cassidy, Mike Garson, Buddy & Julie Miller, Al Stewart, and other notables.
Katie Kapurch is an Assistant Professor of English at Texas State University, where she teaches courses on the Beatles and youth culture. She is currently working on two books, “Blackbird Singing: Black America Remixes the Beatles” (Penn State UP, forthcoming) and “Sex and Gender in Rock and Pop from the Beatles to Beyoncé” (Bloomsbury, forthcoming), the latter of which is co-authored with Walter Everett (University of Michigan).
Nick Nadel has written for places like IFC, TruTV, The Onion, AMC, HBO, and more. He also hosts the podcast Movies My Friends Have Never Seen, available on iTunes and other podcast outlets.
Mare Davis has written lots of poems, love letters, essays, and term papers, and one dissertation. She has sung along with Phil Ochs and Holly Near and danced in clubs to the Pointer Sisters. Today she dances to Bruce Springsteen, relaxes to Satie, and plays “Danzon #2” by Arturo Marquez every day. She reads and speaks French, studies Spanish, and practices translation. Her current project is a term paper/essay/translation/mashup on the topic of Colette’s “La Vagabonde.”
Jacob Michael is a musician, composer, freelance writer, designer, and certified Beatles fanatic who will happily sit down with you and talk about the tonal “colors” inherent in second-position voicings of sharp-nine guitar chords as opposed to … wait, come back, we can talk about bourbon instead!
Susan Shumsky is the author of “Maharishi & Me: Seeking Enlightenment with the Beatles’ Guru.” Her websites are www.drsusan.org and www.divinetravels.com.
Marybeth Connaughton has written for art and culture publications both in the U.S. and abroad. She loves art, literature, travel, music, and finding ways to communicate these passions without making her friends’ eyes glaze over. You can find her pretending to participate in social interactions while secretly Shazaming.
Nikki Wantz is a writer who has written for NYLON, IFC and had a weekly column for LA2DAY called Nikki@nite. She has a podcast called, “There’s Something Wrong With Me” available on Itunes and has had screenplays optioned by several studios including Sobini Films. She likes wearing stilettos and sweatpants, a cold Arnold Palmer and a friendly game of Scrabble. She lives in Los Angeles.
Michael Massetti was born into a family of music lovers in New York City watching Ed Sullivan every Sunday night. February 9, 1964 was the night that changed it all for him. Seeing The Beatles on TV began a lifelong love of them and their music. In addition to The Beatles, Michael graduated from the University of Notre Dame, is a life-long Yankees fan, is married, has 2 daughters (who tolerate The Beatles), a stepson and stepdaughter, and two grandchildren who sing Yellow Submarine and Ob La Di, Ob La Da with fervor. Michael lives with his wife, JoAnn, in Tampa, Florida, USA.
Matt Simon is the co-editor of EartoToTheGroundMusic.co where he regularly covers and chats with rising indie songwriters. Additionally, he works as an educator with interests in music history, theology, The Simpsons, and culture.
Jude Southerland Kessler is the leading expert on the life of John Lennon and the author of The John Lennon Series, a projected 9-volume expanded biography taking readers chronologically through John’s life. The first four volumes are Shoulda Been There (from which this excerpt is taken), Shivering Inside, She Loves You and Should Have Known Better. With a personal Lennon library of over 300 books, Kessler undertook seven trips to Liverpool, England to interview John Lennon’s childhood friends, early band members, art college mates, and business associates before embarking on writing the series, which is told in a narrative format and heavily documented.
Mike ‘The Drifter’ Flanigin is a Texas blues musician who’s called Austin, Texas home for the last 25 years. He honed his craft under the tutelage of legendary jazz organist Big John Patton. He’s also spent time with the great organ masters: Jimmy Smith, Brother Jack McDuff, and Jimmy McGriff. Mike is known as the ‘go to’ Hammond organist for Lone Star guitar legends Jimmie Vaughan & Billy Gibbons. He has also performed with Steve Miller, Eric Clapton, Robert Plant, Willie Nelson, Gary Clark Jr., and many others. His 2015 solo effort, The Drifter, is regarded as one of the defining Texas music albums of the era.
Sean Gaillard is a long-time school educator and self-proclaimed Beatles fanatic. He’s the author of The Pepper Effect – a book that talks about how the band’s secrets to success and creative collaboration can be applied not only in the schoolhouse but to life. In his spare time, you’ll find him browsing used record stores. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @sgaillard.
Robert-Allan Arno is a New York and Philadelphia-based actor/announcer & teacher of “The Soul of The Voice” voice-acting method, and the American Ambassador for Land of Hope, Nigeria–West Africa’s largest private children’s center.
Sharon Oliver is a freelance writer and cozy mystery novelist. A native northerner currently living somewhere in the south, she loves British detective shows and will cover and defend (especially funk) music-related news to the bitter end because this is One Nation Under A Groove. Twitter: @olivershar7
Graham Pierrepoint is a British-based writer and an avid consumer of classic pop culture. He is a seasoned movie critic and ghostwriter with a genuine passion for rock and pop of yesteryear, having spent his youth collecting Tears For Fears and Scritti Politti LPs.
Dan Gunderman is an active author, film critic and media professional. Dan is a former staff writer for the New York Daily News, where he covered entertainment, politics, lifestyle topics and had reviews/recaps aggregated by Rotten Tomatoes. He is also the former editor of a cybersecurity news site and is a contributing film writer for TheCriticalCritics.com. He holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Fairfield University and a BA in Journalism from Monmouth University. His debut historical fiction novel, Synod, was published by Zimbell House in 2018. Follow him on Twitter @dangun127.
Frances Katz is a freelance media and pop culture journalist whose work has appeared in The Atlantic, Paste, Lonely Planet, The Washington Post and others. She won a copy of the Beatles white album when she was 11 and the rest is history. Try to stump her with trivia or just hang out with her on Twitter @francesk.
Mauricio Gonzalez-Cadena is a first generation immigrant, author, writer, artist, and model based in Michigan. Avid fan of all things classic rock, fashion, and anything that dares to stand out. Illustrator and writer of “Tongue Tied Cherry Stems”, available now on Amazon.
Melissa A. Kay is a seasoned freelance writer, content strategist, and editor from the New York City area. You’ll find her work on the web and in print, covering a wide range of genres and interests. She resides on Long Island, NY with her husband and cat, both who serve as inspiration.
April Hanna is a recent graduate from Ramapo College of New Jersey majoring in communications and writing. Born in May (not April), she enjoys writing poetry, creative nonfiction, and biographical sketches. April is also an avid supporter of the Oxford comma. You can find April writing custom poetry on @venmopoems.
Brandon Ousley is a writer, editor, and creative from Chicago. His writing beat is music, branching across several genres. He’s an avid music enthusiast with an encyclopedic vinyl and CD collection. He contends that the album is mankind’s greatest (and under-championed) art form to ever exist.
Mark Daponte is a copy/blog writer for an advertising company in New York City. When he isn’t sinking down to a five-year-old’s mental level to futilely make his two teenaged sons laugh, he can be found scouring his hometown of Brooklyn for empty bottles and subjects to write about.
Natasha Lavender is a British writer living in Chicago. Her work has appeared on Hello Giggles, Looper, Ravishly, Brit + Co and SELF. You can find her being sarcastic on Twitter (@NatashaLavender).
Eryn Murphy is a writer and cinephile known for seeing movies multiple times in theaters. When not at the movies, she can be found obsessing over everything BTS does. An aspiring author, she has several book drafts saved on her computer and hopes to actually publish them one day. www.erynmurphywriter.com
Allison Rapp’s first concert was Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers at age 14, and since then she has been a full-time rock n’ roller. She lives, writes, and works on documentary film in New York City. When she’s not at a concert or spinning vinyl, she tweets from @Allison_Rapp22
Charles Caracciolo is a video editor by day, a drummer on random weekends, a NY Mets fan for 6 masochistic months a year, and a dad and husband 24/7. He has dreamed of making his own movie since getting a GAF 8mm movie camera for Christmas at age 13.
Jesse Jarnow (@bourgwick) is the author of Wasn’t That a Time: The Weavers, the Blacklist, and the Battle For the Soul of America (Da Capo, 2018), Heads: A Biography of Psychedelic America (Da Capo, 2016), and Big Day Coming: Yo La Tengo and the Rise of Indie Rock. He hosts the Frow Show on WFMU every Monday at 9pm ET.