Juke In The Back

Matt The Cat presents the soul that came before rock and roll: 1950s rhythm and blues. Each week, this underrated and rollicking music plays on that old Rockola Jukebox in the back. If you wanted to hear rhythm & blues during the 1950s, you couldn’t get it from the juke box in the front. No, no! In order to hear that glorious, down and dirty R&B, you had to go to the low-lit, spit-shined “Juke In The Back.” These songs are the building blocks of rock n’ roll. These are the records that inspired Elvis and single-handedly led to the rock n’ roll explosion of the mid-1950s. Big Joe Turner, Fats Domino, Little Richard, Ruth Brown, Ray Charles, Wynonie Harris, LaVern Baker, Roy Brown, Joe Liggins, Professor Longhair and many more take center stage on The Juke In The Back. Matt The Cat hosted a similar program on XM Satellite Radio called “Harlem” and now he brings this great music and information back to radio.



Episode #587 – R.I.P. Willie Winfield of The Harptones

Air Week: August 2-8, 2021

R.I.P. Willie Winfield of The Harptones

On July 27th, we lost the amazing, soaring tenor of The Harptones’ Willie Winfield. The Harptones never had a national hit record, yet they are arguably the finest vocal group to come out of New York City during the 1950s. Winfield’s recognizable vocal style matched Raoul Cita’s songwriting and arrangements, which helped them hit the local charts and influence their peers. What set The Harptones apart from many of the successful vocal groups of the day was their perfectly matched harmonies. Whereas most vocal groups had only one signature song, The Harptones enjoyed many, from their first release, 1953’s “A Sunday Kind Of Love,” to “Life Is But A Dream” in ’55 and “The Shrine Of St. Cecilia” in ’57. This week, Matt The Cat digs out many of The Harptones’ wrongfully forgotten records and gives ’em a spin as we honor the late, great Willie Winfield on our old Rockola “Juke In The Back.”



 2021-08-01  59m