The Breakdown

Uncovering Bluegrass music one iconic record at a time.

About the show

Fiddler Patrick McGonigle and music journalist Emma John uncover bluegrass music one iconic record at a time in The Breakdown, a new limited series from The Bluegrass Situation. Peeling back the layers of a sometimes under appreciated genre, The Breakdown reveals the bizarre, compelling, and often completely mad stories from bluegrass players past and present.

Episodes

  • The Seldom Scene - Live at The Cellar Door

    March 26th, 2020  |  Season 2  |  49 mins 29 secs
    ben eldridge, bgs podcast network, bluegrass podcast, classic bluegrass album, dudley connell, fred travers, john duffey, john starling, live at the cellar door, lonely heartstring band, lou reid, mike auldridge, moondi klein, phil rosenthal, rickie simpkins, ron stewart, ronnie simpkins, roots culture redefined, seldom scene, steel rail blues, t. michael coleman, the bluegrass situation, the seldom scene, tom gray

    The Seldom Scene's classic 1975 release "Live at the Cellar Door" is featured, and if ever there was a party of a bluegrass album, "Live at the Cellar Door" is it.

  • O Brother, Where Art Thou?

    March 17th, 2020  |  Season 2  |  46 mins 56 secs
    alison krauss, bgs podcast network, bluegrass breakdown podcast, bluegrass podcasts, chris thomas king, classic bluegrass, classic bluegrass albums, coen brothers, dan tyminski, emma john, emmylou harris, george clooney, gillian welch, grammy album of the year 2002, o brother where art thou, patrick mgonicle, roots culture redefined, t bone burnett, the bluegrass situation, the breakdown podcast

    This week, Patrick and Emma dissect the soundtrack to O Brother Where Art Thou, with a little help from their friends Chris Thomas King and Dan Tyminski.

  • Bill Monroe - The High, Lonesome Sound of Bill Monroe

    March 10th, 2020  |  Season 2  |  46 mins 54 secs
    bgs podcast network, bill monroe, bluegrass breakdown podcast, bluegrass podcasts, classic bluegrass, classic bluegrass albums, emma john, patrick mgonicle, roots culture redefined, the bluegrass situation, the breakdown podcast, the high lonesome sound, the high lonesome sound of bill monroe

    It's high, it's lonesome – it's The High Lonesome Sound of Bill Monroe.

  • Alison Krauss and Union Station - So Long, So Wrong

    March 3rd, 2020  |  Season 2  |  46 mins 36 secs
    90s bluegrass, alison krauss, alison krauss and union station, bgs podcast network, bluegrass breakdown podcast, bluegrass podcasts, classic bluegrass albums, emma john, patrick mgonicle, roots culture redefined, so long so wrong, the bluegrass situation, the breakdown podcast

    Alison Krauss and Union Station's 1997 album "So Long, So Wrong", is highlighted.

  • Jim & Jesse - The Jim & Jesse Show

    February 25th, 2020  |  Season 2  |  36 mins 42 secs
    bgs podcast network, bluegrass podcast, jim & jesse, jim & jesse live in japan, the breakdown podcast, the jim & jesse show

    Jim & Jesse's 1975 live album "The Jim & Jesse Show", recorded in Japan, is highlighted.

  • Dolly Parton - The Grass Is Blue

    February 18th, 2020  |  Season 2  |  41 mins 17 secs
    bgs podcast network, bluegrass podcast, dolly parton, emma john, patrick m'gonigle, roots culture redefined, the bluegrass situation, the breakdown podcast, the grass is blue

    Season 2 of The Breakdown Podcast has arrived! Dolly Parton's Grammy Award-winning Bluegrass album "The Grass Is Blue" is highlighted.

  • Punch Brothers - Antifogmatic

    December 20th, 2018  |  Season 1  |  56 mins 45 secs
    antifogmatic, bluegrass, chris thile, music podcasts, podcasts, punch brothers, the breakdown

    It’s a festively boozy week on The Breakdown – Emma’s been at the drinks cabinet and so, it seems, have the Punch Brothers. Is their wild and woozy Antifogmatic even a bluegrass record? We join Noam, Gabe and Critter in London to find the answer – then track down Chris Thile in New York to steal his cocktail recipes.

  • Keith Whitley and Ricky Skaggs - Second Generation Bluegrass

    December 13th, 2018  |  Season 1  |  51 mins 51 secs
    bluegrass, keith whitley, ricky skaggs, second generation bluegrass, the breakdown

    Ricky Skaggs and Keith Whitley were only 17 years old when they recorded Second Generation Bluegrass. Ricky Skaggs joins The Breakdown to talk about this iconic album.

  • John Hartford - "Aereo-Plain"

    December 6th, 2018  |  Season 1  |  34 mins 35 secs
    aereo plain, bluegrass, jam grass, jamgrass, john hartford

    Aereo-Plain is probably the greatest album John Hartford ever made - but when it came out in 1971, even his record label didn’t know what to make of it. We’re still not quite sure - is it a genuine nostalgiafest, or was hippie Hartford pulling bluegrass’s leg? And can producer David Bromberg and Vassar Clements superfan Alex Hargreaves help us solve the mystery?

  • Béla Fleck - Drive

    November 29th, 2018  |  Season 1  |  43 mins 59 secs
    banjo, bela fleck, bluegrass, dobro, drive, jerry douglas, mandolin, sam bush

    Béla Fleck's virtuostic 1988 instrumental album "Drive" is a touchstone of modern acoustic music.

  • Flatt & Scruggs - At Carnegie Hall!

    November 15th, 2018  |  Season 1  |  52 mins 30 secs
    bluegrass, carnegie hall, earl scruggs, flatt & scruggs, lester flatt

    Released in 1963 by Columbia Records, the historic performance from Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs and The Foggy Mountain Boys records the first time a bluegrass artist headlined the venerable New York concert hall.

  • Hazel Dickens and Alice Gerrard

    November 15th, 2018  |  Season 1  |  43 mins 28 secs
    alice gerrard, bluegrass, hazel and alice, hazel dickens

    Emma and Patrick dissect the 1976 album Hazel Dickens and Alice Gerrard (not to be confused with their earlier recording Hazel and Alice), a release that came out after the unlikely duo already broke up.

  • The Breakdown Introduction

    November 12th, 2018  |  Season 1  |  2 mins 25 secs
    bluegrass, breakdown

    An introduction to The Breakdown - a new podcast from BGS that uncovers Bluegrass music one iconic record at a time.