The Steer

Hosted ByJoshua James Amberson, Karleigh Frisbie Brogan & Jeff Alessandrelli

Hosted by Joshua James Amberson, Karleigh Frisbie Brogan, and Jeff Alessandrelli in Portland, Oregon, The Steer features leading musicians talking about their favorite writers and books and leading writers talking about their favorite musicians and albums. Conversations often go elsewhere and following each talk is a playlist of songs or sounds discussed during the interview. New episodes drop every two weeks.

All Episodes

Journalist & Music Writer Santi Elijah Holley

Our chat with Portland journalist and music writer Santi Elijah Holley. We talk about his upcoming Bloomsbury 33 1/3 book, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds’ Murder Ballads, as well as his book-in-progress on the Shakur family and the history of Black liberation movements. We also take a deep dive into the folk ballad “Stagger Lee.”

Santi Elijah Holley–Playlist

Some songs to accompany our chat with journalist and music writer Santi Elijah Holley on his upcoming 33 1/3 book, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds’ Murder Ballads. Four essential versions of the folk ballad “Stagger Lee,” as well as 2Pac, Gil-Scott Heron, and Sister Rosetta Tharpe.


Reintroducing The Steer and introducing our new co-host Karleigh Frisbie Brogan. Joshua and Karleigh discuss friendship, pandemic writing, upcoming guests, new music recommendations, and the importance of college radio in the 1990s


Some tunes to accompany our reintroduction to The Steer, and the introduction of our new co-host Karleigh Frisbie Brogan. Songs from Brittany Howard, Ora Cogan, Aldous Harding, Babytooth, Dao Strom, and more.

Bill Carty–Playlist

Music from the Bill Carty episode of The Steer, as heard on and KZUT 99.1 FM Los Angeles. Artists include Gang Starr, Tierra Whack, Frank Ocean and Yo Yo Ma, among others.

Poet Bill Carty

Joshua and Jeff talk to Seattle-based poet Bill Carty. Topics discussed include: writing under the joy/ pressure of having two young children, the mastery of Gang Starr, growing up in Maine, and his 2019 poetry collection Huge Cloudy, nominated for the 2019 The Believer Book Award in the Poetry category.

Stephen Steinbrink–Playlist

Music from the Stephen Steinbrink episode of The Steer, as heard on and KZUT 99.1 FM Los Angeles. Artists include Dear Nora, Prefab Sprout, Lake and Stephen Steinbrink, among others.

Songwriter Stephen Steinbrink

Jeff and Joshua talk to Oakland-based indie-pop songwriter Stephen Steinbrink. Topics discussed include: Olympia, Washington; audio books; the kindness of LAKE; stained glass refurbishing; therapy; psychedelics; Arthur Russell; and why short stories are the best tour read.

Margaret Malone–Playlist

Music from the Margaret Malone episode of The Steer, as heard on and KZUT 99.1 FM Los Angeles. Artists include Erik Satie, John Coltrane, The Notwist and Juana Molina, among others.

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