Sound Opinions

Saturdays 9-10 PM
  • Hosted by Greg Kot, Jim DeRogatis

Sound Opinions is where music lovers come together. You can make discoveries, debate, learn about pop culture, engage, have fun and find new ways to further enrich your life through music. Whether you're an expert, or just a casual fan, Sound Opinions is your source for smart and engaging music criticism and conversation. Each week on the show, nationally respected rock critics Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis interview artists, talk about pop culture and music industry news, review new record releases and give trends a historical context. And, because on Sound Opinions,“everyone's a critic,” you are invited to join in the debate.

Ways to Connect

Buried Treasures and Remembering Geoff Emerick

Oct 11, 2018

It's Buried Treasures time yet again. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share some new under-the-radar music that you need to hear! Plus, they revisit their 2006 conversation with Geoff Emerick, an audio engineer who worked on the classic Beatles albums Revolver, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and Abbey Road. Emerick passed away this month at the age of 72.

Sound Opinions: Wayne Kramer of the MC5

Oct 4, 2018

As the lead guitarist of the groundbreaking political rock band the MC5, Wayne Kramer experienced both the highs of recognition and the sting of defeat. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot talk with Kramer 50 years after the band's iconic debut Kick Out the Jams. They chat about his new memoir, the '60s Detroit rock scene and discuss his experiences with overcoming drug abuse and jail time.

Sound Opinions: Diss Tracks & Rock Doctors

Sep 27, 2018

Though music can be a mighty force that brings people together, it can also be weaponized. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot look at memorable times musicians have used their art to settle scores in song: their favorite diss tracks of all time. They also bring back the Rock Doctors segment to help a mom find songs that empower her son without toxic masculinity- basically the polar opposite of diss tracks.

Dessa & Opinions on Paul McCartney

Sep 19, 2018

Dessa is a poet, singer and hip hop artist who is as interested in scientific theory as she is in lyricism. Her latest album, Chime, showcases her unique hybrid of clever rapping and singing about sometimes weighty issues. Dessa joined hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot at the Goose Island Tap Room for a conversation and a live performance. Plus, Jim and Greg review Sir Paul McCartney's latest, Egypt Station.

Sound Opinions: Disco & Seymour Stein

Sep 12, 2018

For decades, people have maligned disco music. This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot take an in-depth look at the genre from its origins in marginalized communities to its height of popularity. They'll also explore groundbreaking artists like Sylvester, the Bee Gees and more. Also, Greg talks to Sire Records co-founder Seymour Stein about signing acts like the Ramones and Madonna.

Sound Opinions: Buried Treasures and Bat Fangs

Sep 6, 2018

Looking for new music that's out of the mainstream? Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot uncover some buried treasures: under the radar tunes that you need to hear! They also interview the '80s hair metal-inspired band Bat Fangs.

Sound Opinions Show

Aug 30, 2018

Over seven albums and 18 years, Mastodon has stretched the definition of metal. Co-founder, drummer and lyricist Brann Dailor recently joined hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot to look back over the band’s career. The conversation ranges from forming in Atlanta to coping with personal tragedy through music. Jim and Greg also couldn’t resist asking how the heck they wound up as wildlings on Game of Thrones.

Sound Opinions: Brian Koppelman

Aug 23, 2018

Brian Koppelman makes his living as the showrunner, co-creator and writer for the Showtime series Billions. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot talk with Koppelman about how he innovatively uses music in the critically acclaimed show. They also discuss his past career as an A&R executive, where he discovered artists like singer-songwriter Tracy Chapman. They'll also review the soundtrack to the critically acclaimed film Sorry to Bother You and the new release from country artist Amanda Shires.

Sound Opinions Remembers Aretha Franklin

Aug 16, 2018

The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, has died at age 76. This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot celebrate the life and career of the legend. They'll discuss her discography, music activism and impact. They also dig into the best selling album of Aretha Franklin's career, Amazing Grace, with Aaron Cohen, who wrote a book about that seminal recording.

Sound Opinions: Remembering Aretha Franklin

Aug 16, 2018

Aretha Franklin’s voice was powerful, moving, and unmistakable. Sound Opinions remembers the life, legacy and music of the Queen of Soul. Hosts Jim Derogatis and Greg Kot talk about her life and share some of her most memorable recordings. They also speak with keyboardist Spooner Oldham who recorded with Aretha and dig into her most successful album, 1972’s Amazing Grace.

Roxy Music Classic Album Dissection

Aug 9, 2018

Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot dig into Roxy Music's influential 1972 self-titled debut album. They get the inside story of the recording of Roxy Music from former Roxy Music guitarist Phil Manzanera, and discuss the album's lasting impact.

Sound Opinions: Sound Opinions at Sea

Aug 2, 2018

This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot take the show to the water with the episode Sound Opinions at Sea! They'll share some of their favorite songs about oceans, seas and more! Plus, a conversation and live performance at the Goose Island Tap Room in Chicago with singer-songwriter Phoebe Bridgers.

Sound Opinions: Alice Cooper

Jul 27, 2018

Alice Cooper invented shock-rock in the 1970s, sparking controversy with his ghoulishly theatrical live shows and hard rock hits like "School's Out" and "I'm Eighteen." Alice Cooper joins hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot for a career-spanning conversation.

Sound Opinions Fundraiser: Exile on Main St.

Jul 23, 2018

This is a special fundraising edition of Sound Opinions hosted by Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot. Hosts Jim and Greg discuss the often overlooked masterpiece by the Rolling Stones, 1972’s Exile on Main St. There are three (3) episode segments plus an optional billboard to be aired sequentially during the Sound Opinions hour. Pitch time has been allotted. NOTE: This episode doesn’t make mention of pitching, pledge drives, or supporting public radio. Nor are there ‘handoffs.’ It is simply a regular episode of Sound Opinions cut to a length to allow for for pitching. 

Sound Opinions: PJ Morton

Jul 19, 2018

PJ Morton is an indie soul artist that just happens to be in Maroon Five, one of the biggest pop groups in the country. But his solo sound is light years away from Top 40 R&B, blending his New Orleans gospel roots with strains of Stevie Wonder. PJ joins Jim and Greg for a conversation and performance.

Sound Opinions: Buried Treasures & MSNBC's Ari Melber

Jul 12, 2018

It's time yet again from Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot to open their treasure chests and reveal relatively unknown new albums YOU need to hear! They'll also talk to host of MSNBC's The Beat, Ari Melber, about his love for rap music and how he integrates it into his political coverage.

Sound Opinions Live!

Jul 2, 2018

So many talented musicians perform on Sound Opinions, but we don't always have time to air every song. Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share some of their favorite never-before-heard live performances from artists like Beach Slang and Arcade Fire. Plus, they unearth even more favorite performances from our archive.

Sound Opinions: The Best Albums of 2018 So Far

Jun 28, 2018

The year is half over and we think it's time to share some of our favorite albums of 2018 so far! Find out what albums hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot have at the top of their lists, plus hear from some listeners.

Sound Opinions: Hinds & Review Round-up

Jun 21, 2018

Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot talk with two members of the Spanish women rock band Hinds about their unique take on punk rock and how they've reached fans in America and the U.K. Also, with an influx of new releases, it’s time for a review round-up! Jim and Greg give their opinions on new albums from Parquet Courts, Neko Case and Kanye West. 

Margo Price and Remembering Anthony Bourdain

Jun 13, 2018

This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot are joined by country singer-songwriter Margo Price. Price is signed to Jack White's Third Man Records, and her sound is a blend of outlaw country and roots music. A natural born storyteller, Price joined the hosts for an interview and performance. Plus, Jim and Greg revisit their interview with world traveler and chef Anthony Bourdain, who we lost recently. He was 61.

Sound Opinions: Joni Mitchell's Blue

Jun 7, 2018

Almost 50 years ago, singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell released what became her signature album, Blue. The record is full of complex lyrics, gorgeous guitar and deeply personal themes. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot do a classic album dissection of Blue, sharing the context of the record, exploring its lasting impact and looking in depth at its impressive track list.

Sound Opinions: Anxious Anthems & Leon Bridges

May 31, 2018

Forget “Keep Calm and Carry On.” This week, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot play their favorite Anxious Anthems. Then, they chat with some listeners to hear what songs make them nervous. Plus, the hosts sit down with soul singer Leon Bridges. Leon's latest album, Good Thing, marks his transition into an adventurous new sound.

Give The Drummer Some

May 24, 2018

What role do drums play in Rock? Should that be keeping the beat or leading from the front? Who are some of the greatest drummers in rock music? The beat goes on as Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot focus on the contributions of drummers to rock music with drummer Joe Wong. Wong also hosts a podcast on drummers called The Trap Set.

Sound Opinions: John Prine

May 17, 2018

For the last 50 years, John Prine has garnered a multi-generational fan base through his nuanced storytelling as a songwriter and performer. The balance of humor, plain language and reality in his music is what makes him stand out in the genres of folk, country and beyond. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot talk to Prine about starting his own independent label, working with Phil Spector and his writing process.

Jim and Greg dive into their piles and piles of new music to bring you their latest favorites. Plus, some of our favorite musicians tell us about the songs they'd want with them if they were stranded on a desert island.

Sound Opinions: Slayer

May 3, 2018

With Slayer's farewell tour approaching, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot revisit their interview with two members of the iconic thrash metal band- drummer Dave Lombardo and guitarist Kerry King. They discuss their signature breakneck song pace, favorite moments in the group and working with hip hop producer Rick Rubin.

Sound Opinions: Songs About Horses

Apr 26, 2018

And they're off! In honor of the Kentucky Derby, it seemed like the perfect time to explore a relatively common theme in music - horses. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot discuss why these majestic animals cross genres from soul to rock and roll. They’ll also share some of their favorite tracks about stallions, mares, ponies and more.

Sound Opinions: Jason Isbell

Apr 19, 2018

For country singer/songwriter Jason Isbell's latest record, "The Nashville Sound," he wrote about his role as a father and an artist in today's America. It ended up being his most political album yet, addressing issues like white privilege and working class frustrations. Jason joins Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot to talk about songwriting, ethics, sobriety, and performs a special acoustic set. 

Sound Opinions: The Legend of Captain Beefheart

Apr 12, 2018

Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot explore the legend of Captain Beefheart, a musician with a larger-than-life personality who blurred the lines of music, art and noise. Also, they talk with longtime Captain Beefheart collaborator Gary Lucas and share their thoughts on why Beefheart's music, however difficult, is of value.

Sound Opinions: The Regrettes

Apr 4, 2018

The Regrettes are a young band that blends 1960s girl group sensibilities with the edge of Bikini Kill. Their debut album, Feel Your Feelings, Fool! was a Best of 2017 pick for both Jim and Greg. The Regrettes joined Greg for a performance and conversation.

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