If you follow our Twitter feed, then you’ve probably noticed how much time we spend frequenting strange bills at (Le) Poisson Rouge. One ongoing event we keep forgetting to catch, however, is Radio Happy Hour, an “updated, New York version of Hee Haw, with more drinking and dirtier jokes.” At least that’s how the show’s creator/host, Sam Osterhout, sees it. We prefer to look at it as a place where we can see intimate performances and impromptu acting from such comedians, musicians and/or madmen as Michael Showalter, Andrew WK and Tunde Adebimpe.
Case in point: the following two clips…
Radio Happy Hour recently shared both of the above as part of a special mixtape featuring nine live performances from the past year. We’ve zipped ’em all for you here. Once you’re done downloading that, you might want to read this track-by-track breakdown from the RHH site:
1. Tunde Adebimpe (TV on the Radio) â€“ â€œYoung Liarsâ€ (solo a cappella)
Tunde Adebimpe was a part of Episode 4, â€œKumbaya of Terror,â€ with Kumail Nanjiani. During the show Adebimpe performed two TV on the Radio songs a cappella with loops. You might have heard that Adebimpe has a pretty damn good voice. If you haven’t: exhibit A.
2. Cursive â€“ â€œFrom the Hipsâ€
Tim Kasher and crew came by Radio Happy Hour in March for â€œThe Great Nebrassacreâ€ with author Arthur Phillips and comedians John & Molly Knefel. Cursive played two tracks from their latest album Mama, I’m Swollen including a fantastic rendition of â€œFrom the Hips.â€
3. David Bazan â€“ â€œFlirted with You All My Lifeâ€ (Vic Chestnutt Cover)
That’s right, David Bazan covered Vic Chestnutt’s â€œFlirted with You All My Life.â€ The song was performed during Episode 9, â€œBobbledead,â€ with Jesse Eisenberg and comedian Max Silvestri. It’s beautiful and terribly sad.
4. The Hold Steady â€“ â€œMultitude of Casualtiesâ€
Craig Finn and Tad Kubler of The Hold Steady made an appearance in Episode 5, â€œStabbed in the Ascot.â€ The episode also included author Chuck Klosterman appearing as the father of Craig and Tad. The duo played an acoustic set with Kubler on guitar and Finn singing. Here they played â€œMultitude of Casualties.â€ They also played â€œCheyenne Sunriseâ€ later in the show.
5. Norah Jones â€“ â€œMan of the Hourâ€
This one is from the very first episode of Radio Happy Hour. Norah Jones appeared as a motel manager in an episode called â€œTerror in Teaneck,â€ which co-starred a foul-mouthed parrot. Jones played a couple of songs acoustic including this one about a dog.
6. Tapes â€˜n Tapes â€“ â€œOmahaâ€
Radio Happy Hour went on the road in April for Episode 8, â€œThe End of Tender Loving.â€ This episode was taped at the Cedar Cultural Center in Minneapolis. Tapes â€˜n Tapes performed a new track, â€œSWM,â€ that can be found on the podcast, and the also played â€œOmaha,â€ off of their album The Loon. This episode also featured Chris Koza, Jeremy Messersmith, and author Geoff Herbach.
7. Chris Koza w/ Jeremy Messersmith â€“ â€œHummingbirdâ€
Chris Koza appeared alongside Tapes â€˜n Tapes at the Minneapolis episode of Radio Happy Hour. He performed his song â€œHummingbirdâ€ from the new Rogue Valley album Crater Lake. Koza is joined here by Minneapolis based singer-songwriter Jeremy Messersmith.
8. Andrew WK â€“ â€œParty Hardâ€ (solo piano improvisation)
Party master Andrew WK came to Radio Happy Hour for the John Hughes tribute, â€œThe Killer Club,â€ in August 2009. WK performed two songs on piano that were a mash of improvised material and some of his classic party songs.
9. Jolie Holland & Grey Gersten â€“ â€œThe Time is Rightâ€ (Michael Hurley cover)
Jolie Holland and Grey Gersten made an appearance in the February Episode of Radio Happy Hour, â€œThe Curse of Cupid’s Balls.â€ In this Valentine’s Day themed episode Holland and Gersten chose to cover a pair of beautiful Michael Hurley songs.
The next Radio Happy Hour will be held on Tuesday, June 17, with Nick Diamonds (Islands), Eddie Kaye Thomas (How To Make It In America) and comedian Murray Hill. Advance tickets are available now.