Sound Opinions from WBEZ Chicago
Distributed by PRX
Sound Opinions is your one-stop-shop for smart and engaging music criticism and conversation.
Each week, hosts and nationally respected rock critics Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis talk about pop culture and music industry news, interview artists and bands, review new record releases, and highlight their all-time favorite rock and roll. And, because on Sound Opinions, "everyone's a critic," listeners are invited to join in the debate.
Sound Opinions is produced by WBEZ Chicago and
distributed nationally by PRX. Learn more.
Latest Episodes for Sound Opinions Subscribers
⇒ Click here for the latest show (Added every Thursday) ⇐
⇒ Click here for the coming week's promo (Added every Thursday) ⇐
PLEASE NOTE: Sound Opinions weekly shows are in a private network and are available to pre-approved stations. Links to pieces will not work unless you are logged into PRX and a member of the network.
You can, however, listen to (and air!) the shows below without already signed up to air Sound Opinions weekly.
Programs For All Stations
We realize many stations would like to try airing Sound Opinions before committing to taking it weekly. For you, we have set up episodes that are available to all stations with current memberships on PRX.
Here are podcasts of some select episodes, too — take a listen!
Sound Opinions with Rivers Cuomo of Weezer
Sound Opinions with K'Naan
Sound Opinions dissects The Clash's London Calling
Sound Opinions talks movies & music with Michael Phillips and A.O. Scott
About the Show
Sound Opinions is your one-stop-shop for smart and engaging music criticism and conversation. Each week, hosts and nationally respected rock critics Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis debate about the latest music news and reviews and showcase live performances from rock’s top artists. For over a decade, Greg and Jim were competitors at Chicago’s top daily newspapers. Today Greg Kot is the rock critic at the Chicago Tribune, and Jim writes about music at WBEZ.org. The two share a passion for music, and nothing gets them — or the listener — more fired-up than arguing, and occasionally agreeing, about rock 'n' roll.
On each episode of Sound Opinions, Jim and Greg keep you up to date on what's going on in popular music. They break down music news and give their reviews of recently released albums from the top of the charts, as well as the indie underground. Jim and Greg also invite their favorite bands and artists to join them for conversation and a live performance. Sound Opinions has featured everyone from the Velvet Underground's John Cale on piano to Weezer’s Rivers Cuomo on electric guitar. Other guests include Somali rapper K'Naan, French pop group Phoenix and the most famous widow in rock, Yoko Ono.
SoundOpinions.org offers listeners free podcasts, live MP3 streams, and bonus content including footnotes, live songs and video.
Sound Opinions is produced by WBEZ Chicago, home to This American Life and Wait Wait...Don’t Tell Me!, and is distributed nationally by PRX. Sound Opinions can be heard on stations across the country and online at SoundOpinions.org.
About the Hosts
Photo by Marty Perez
Born in Jersey City, New Jersey, the year the Beatles arrived in America, Jim DeRogatis began voicing his opinions about rock ’n’ roll shortly thereafter. He is a full-time lecturer in the Professional Writing Program of the English Department at Columbia College Chicago and continues to write about popular music for WBEZ Chicago at its Vocalo blogs. Together with Greg Kot of The Chicago Tribune, he co-hosts Sound Opinions.
DeRogatis spent fifteen years as the rock critic at The Chicago Sun-Times and is the author of several books about music: Let It Blurt: The Life and Times of Lester Bangs, America’s Greatest Rock Critic; The Velvet Underground: An Illustrated History of a Walk on the Wild Side; Staring at Sound: The True Story of Oklahoma’s Fabulous Flaming Lips; Turn On Your Mind: Four Decades of Great Psychedelic Rock; and Milk It! Collected Musings on the Alternative Music Explosion of the ’90s. Outside of the musical realm, he published Sheperd Paine: The Life and Work of a Master Modeler and Military Historian in 2008, and in 2010, he and Kot issued their first book together, The Beatles vs. the Rolling Stones: Sound Opinions on the Great Rock ’n’ Roll Rivalry, written in the fun but combative style of the radio show.
DeRogatis has played in punk-rock bands since age thirteen but jokes that he is a drummer, not a musician. He lives on the North Side of Chicago with his wife Carmel (with whom he edited the 2004 anthology Kill Your Idols: A New Generation of Rock Writers Reconsiders the Classics), near their daughter Melody.
Greg Kot has been the music critic at the Chicago Tribune since 1990 and is the cohost of the nationally syndicated Sound Opinions. He has written several books, including Ripped: How the Wired Generation Revolutionized Music and Wilco: Learning How to Die. Kot is currently working on the biography I'll Take You There: Mavis Staples, the Staple Singers, and the March up Freedom’s Highway, to be published by Scribner in 2014.
He also coauthored The Beatles vs. The Rolling Stones: Sound Opinions on the Great Rock 'n' Roll Rivalry with his Sound Opinions colleague Jim DeRogatis. Kot's Tribune-hosted blog, Turn it Up, debuted in 2007 and covers all aspects of music. A longtime basketball junkie, he coauthored the best-seller Survival Guide for Coaching Youth Basketball. Kot also has made major contributions to books on Johnny Cash, George Harrison, and the Beatles. He has written extensively for Encyclopaedia Britannica, Rolling Stone, and Entertainment Weekly, as well as Details, Men's Journal, Guitar World, Vibe, Request and other publications.
Greg lives on Chicago's Northwest Side with his wife, two daughters, and far too many records. Contact him through his Web site, gregkot.com.
Airing Sound Opinions
Sound Opinions is available on both PRX and ContentDepot. Stations must pay an annual fee for Sound Opinions in order to have access to the program and cannot use PRX points to access Sound Opinions.
Details on carriage fees, getting signed up to air the series, and instructions on how to download episodes can be found at How to Get Sound Opinions.