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Download free music from The Radiators. Concerts in the Live Music Archive are available for download and streaming in formats including flac, mp3, and ogg vorbis.

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Download free music from The Radiators. Concerts in the Live Music Archive are available for download and streaming in formats including flac, mp3, and ogg vorbis.

The Radiators

The Radiators were born during a transitional decade in the history of New Orleans music. The Meters, the premier funk band, had disbanded, the Neville Brothers formed, and in 1980 Professor Longhair, the father of New Orleans R&B and spiritual embodiment of Crescent City Soul had passed on. This decade would prove to be the fertile period of development when a unique blend of rhythms and sounds came together and "Fish Head" music was born. The Radiators, an extremely eclectic group of musicians, rely on a myriad of musical influences to create their own sound - "Fish Head Music". At a Radiators show it is not uncommon to hear blues, R&B, jazz, country, Zydeco, soul, swing, and even gospel filtering through their original New Orleans Rock N' Roll.

This group could only come from New Orleans. Since its earliest settlement, the city developed a rich musical heritage that gave birth to 20th century American music. Musicians from this region were the first to incorporate African rhythms with Western melody. Beginning with culture-blending jam sessions at Congo Square, this musical tableau unfurled in the hands of artists such as JellyRoll Morton, Fats Domino, Professor Longhair, Allen Toussaint, Earl King, The Meters, Dr. John and others too numerous to mention. These acts provided great inspiration for the Radiators.

During their early years, the band members were able to watch and even play live with many of these local heroes. They combined these influences with the rising spirit of sixties rock and R&B to form a new, rhythm-intensive blend of rock and roll. After all, if you're going to the party, you might as well bring something new, right?

The Radiators are in their 26th year of providing some of the most intense live performances (over 3600 thus far!) of any band on the road today. Their intuitive grasp of each other's moves, coupled with a repertoire of nearly 1300 songs provides a basis for a fresh and spontaneous approach to their music.

The band formed in January 1978 in Keyboardist Ed Volker's garage. Ed, Frank Bua, and Camille Baudoin were performing in one band together, with Dave Malone and Reggie Scanlan in another. "Ed invited us to come over to his house and jam; Dave and I figured we'd have a few beers together and play a couple of blues tunes," remembers Scanlan, "instead, we jammed for five hours straight, then all quit our old bands the next day."

Since that legendary first jam session, the Radiators have developed into a strong national act, a result of their marathon length live shows and a relentless touring schedule. The Radiators quickly became one of New Orleans' hottest musical acts, then rose to national prominence as their fans spread the word across the country. In New York City, for example, crowds that started with transplanted Tulane University graduates dancing at the Lone Star Cafe steadily grew. This story has been echoed by similar ground swells rippling across the country.

Their reputation has been further augmented by a sizable body of recorded work - eleven albums released on labels including Epic/C.B.S. and Croaker Records. Aside from backing up such New Orleans legends as Dr. John, Professor Longhair and Earl King, the Radiators have appeared with the Allman Brothers, Little Feat, B.B. King, Robert Cray, The Band, Los Lobos and Taj Mahal to name a few. They are also a featured mainstay of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival every year, owning the coveted closing spot on one of the main stages and playing to an audience approaching 30,000.

The Radiators' instinctive musicianship catalyzes the festive spirit of their shows. Set list... who's following it? This band's legacy rests not only on their extensive repertoire, but also on an uncanny ability to choose the proper song for any given moment. This synergistic pas des deux between artists and audience makes the crowd a part of the music. This intuitive interaction is the hard earned result of 25+ years of live performances.

The Radiators are a true rock n' roll band, loyal to the concept of ensemble playing. They rely solely on the spirit of the music and lyrics (coupled with the band members' natural rapport) to create "the show". It is this musical marriage that has created the Radiators legend and secured the fantastic loyalty of fans known as "fish-heads". Some describe a Rads show as a contest between the band and the audience to see who can have the most fun (and everyone WINS!). Their music is a living & breathing entity, and one never knows what will happen at a Radiators show... not even the Rads! Band's Official Website

Flags: LimDates

**NOTE: As of 3/16/11 no shows are allowed on the LMA in respect to their final tour as a band:

"Hey Joe,
The band has decided to put the rest of the shows up at So all shows from here on out we ask that no one post. In an effort to please as many as possible we will still allow taping at shows except for Jazz Fest Fairgrounds, GAMH, Best Buy and the last Tipitina's shows (Last Watusi weekend).
We hope all will understand. Tune into to see all our show dates and policies.

Any soundboard and/or matrix recordings of May 21st, 22nd and 23rd, 2009 should not be uploaded at the band's request. Audience recordings are still allowed.

On October 4, 2002, the Radiators gave permission for shows to be hosted at the Archive. (6/2005 update- there is a separate section here for Zeke's solo work as well, see "Ed Volker".)

On Fri, 4 Oct 2002, Barney Kilpatrick wrote:
Etree's policies are clearly in line with the Radiators taping/distribution policies as posted on their web site. Therefore, as long as show availabilty on your server is free to the public and there is no advertising attached, you are free to offer Radiators live shows.

Barney Kilpatrick
Rattlesby Records


The Radiators and our managing organizations have long encouraged
the purely non-commercial exchange of music taped at our concerts and
those of our individual members.

That a new medium of distribution has arisen - digital audio files being
traded over the Internet - does not change our policy in this regard.

Our stipulations regarding digital distribution are merely extensions
of those long-standing principles and they are as follow:

-No commercial gain may be sought by websites offering digital files of
our music, whether through advertising, exploiting databases compiled
from their traffic, or any other means.
-All participants in such digital exchange acknowledge and respect the
copyrights of the performers, writers and publishers of the music.
-This notice should be clearly posted on all sites engaged in this
-We reserve the ability to withdraw our sanction of non-commercial
digital music should circumstances arise that compromise our ability
to protect and steward the integrity of our work.

Created on
May 13
Jeff Kaplan

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