Mark Simmet

Studio One Host

Senior Producer Mark Simmet began working at KUNI over 20 years ago.  In that time he has produced and hosted a long-running daily jazz program, as well as weekly blues and world music programs.  Mark also was a fill-in/substitute folk music host.  He has spent many years perfecting IPR's unique blend of musical styles as the host and producer of Studio One.  Mark also reviews all new submissions to IPR’s Studio One library, deciding on CD of The Week artists and maintaining reporting of music aired to record companies, promoters and trade publications.

Mark has a Bachelor’s Degree in Art from St. John’s University in Collegeville, MN, and finds that his creative skills are very applicable to his work sculpting Studio One.

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun January 25, 2015

Featured Release This Week From Panda Bear

Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper is the fifth full-length album Noah Lennox has released under his nom de plume Panda Bear.  Baltimore native Panda Bear is a co-founding member of Animal Collective, a band known for their musical creativity and experimentation.  The multi-instrumentalist has indicated that death and personal growth are lyrical themes of the new record.  The music has been aptly described as "swirling" and "as pure as a babbling brook." 

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Studio One
5:00 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

Iowa Talent Represented In NPR Tiny Desk Concert Contest

NPR Tiny Desk Concerts are intimate video performances, recorded live at the desk of All Songs Considered host, Bob Boilen.  Boilen's desk is located at NPR headquarters in Washington, DC.  Past performers have included Lucinda Williams, Rubblebucket, St Paul and The Broken Bones, J. Mascis, Tweedy, Pixies, Neko Case and many more!  

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun January 18, 2015

Featured Release This Week From Rose's Pawn Shop

Credit rosespawnshop.com

Gravity Well is the new album from Rose's Pawn Shop.  The Los Angeles-based, five-piece group formed in 2006, and this is their third full-length album.  The sound of Rose's Pawn Shop can be categorized as Americana leaning toward the indie rock side.  In fact, the songs on Gravity Well have been described as rousing, fierce and anthemic; the music a "stomping interpretation of alt-country and Americana songcraft." 

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Studio One
5:07 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

Hear Beverly & The Accordion's Studio One Set

Beverly And The Accordion performing live in IPR's Studio One.
Credit Elliot Tensen

The Iowa band Beverly and the Accordion performed live in IPR'S Cedar Falls studios on January 13.  The six-piece group played songs from their new release The Porch Sessions, and more.  An appreciative hometown audience responded enthusiastically to Beverly and the Accordion's Americana-flavored music.  And yes, an accordion can be heard in the mix!    

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun January 11, 2015

Featured Release This Week From DRGN KING

Philadelphia's DRGN KING (pronounced "Dragon King") began as a duo in 2009, with singer and frontman Dominic Angelella, and multi-instrumentalist and producer Ritz Reynolds.  The duo later expanded to a four-piece band.  After recording a few tracks and releasing a few EP's, the debut full-length album from DRGN KING was released in 2013.  Baltimore Crush is the follow-up, with songs inspired by Angelella's youth in Baltimore, and highlighting the band's bright indie-rock sound.  

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun January 4, 2015

Featured Release This Week From mr. Gnome

Credit mrgnome.com

The Heart Of A Dark Star is the fourth album from mr. Gnome, a married duo from Cleveland, Ohio.  The full sound of mr. Gnome's music is created by singer/guitarist Nicole Barille and drummer/pianist Sam Meister.  They have been recording as mr. Gnome since 2006.  Their sound has been described as "art rock", with songs that explore fantastic and mythical subjects, and a theatrical approach to their music and stage show. 

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun December 28, 2014

Featured Release This Week From Flake Music

Credit npr.org

James Mercer's band The Shins began as a side project of his then primary group, Flake Music.  The Albuquerque, New Mexico band was more collaborative than The Shins, and was active for much of the 1990's.  They only released one full-length album, When You Land Here It's Time To Return, in 1997.  Because of the success of The Shins (and another Mercer project, Broken Bells), interest remains high in Flake Music.  The album's songs, remixed and reissued now on the Sub Pop label, are enjoyable guitar-based indie pop.   

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun December 21, 2014

Featured Release This Week From Blind Boys of Alabama & Taj Mahal

Credit blindboys.com/

Blind Boys of Alabama formed in 1944, and have stated that their goal is to "spiritually uplift audiences."  They have released many records over the years, and Talkin' Christmas is not their first Christmas album.  It is, however, the first to feature collaborator Taj Mahal.  Taj Mahal has been putting his unique stamp on blues and world music for nearly 50 years.  In Talkin' Christmas the singers and musicians have created a special blend of gospel and R&B for the season.

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Studio One
2:59 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

Dependable Bands, Innovators and Pleasant Surprises: Studio One Hosts' 2014 Favorites

Cover art for TV On the Radio's album Seeds
TV on the Radio

Several dependable bands, some innovators and a few pleasant surprises made the list of IPR's Studio One hosts' favorite music of 2014.

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun December 14, 2014

Featured Release This Week From Deerhoof

Credit npr.org

La Isla Bonita is the twelfth full-length album from Deerhoof, a band that formed in San Francisco in 1994.  In that twenty year span, Deerhoof have produced and managed themselves, creating an avant-garde pop sound that can be equally challenging and intriguing.  Japanese-born Satomi Matsuzaki is the band's distinctive vocalist.  Inspired by the high energy, to-the-point style of the Ramones, Deerhoof reportedly recorded La Isla Bonita live in the basement of guitarist Ed Rodriguez in a "weeklong sleepover". 

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Studio One
11:44 am
Tue December 9, 2014

Hear Pieta Brown's Studio One Live Set

Pieta Brown and Bo Ramsey perform in IPR's Studio One.
Credit IPR/Tony Dehner

Pieta Brown, along with Bo Ramsey on electric guitar, stopped by IPR's Cedar Falls studios on Dec. 8.  The set list included songs from the new album Paradise Outlaw.  The live set was in advance of her Dec. 12 show at Des Moines' Temple for the Performing Arts, a night of music that will also feature The Pines, and is being presented by Iowa Public Radio Studio One.  Enjoy this wonderful live performance!

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun December 7, 2014

Featured Release This Week From Ariel Pink

Ariel Pink is the stage name of Ariel Marcus Rosenberg, a multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, songwriter and producer based in Los Angeles.  He studied visual art for a time at the California Institute of the Arts, and has been writing songs for most of his life.  He began making lo-fi recording of his songs in the mid-1990's, and has recorded over 500 songs since then, most of them unreleased commercially.  The new album Pom Pom is an entertaining mix of accessible pop songs and Frank Zappa style eccentricity.

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Studio One
12:27 pm
Fri December 5, 2014

Hear Unknown Component's Studio One Set

Unknown Component performing in IPR's Studio One.
Credit IPR/Tony Dehner

Based in Central Iowa, Unknown Component is the project of multi-instrumentalist and producer Keith Lynch.  Unknown Component made a return visit to Studio One on Dec. 4, playing songs from the brand new release Arbitrary Ambiguity and more.  With a couple of guitars, a laptop and a few other pieces of gear, Lynch produced the full sound of Unknown Component.  You can listen right here!

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun November 30, 2014

Featured Release This Week From The New Basement Tapes

Credit thenewbasementtapes.com

Bob Dylan gave producer T Bone Burnett a batch of his lyrics written circa 1967.  Burnett gathered Elvis Costello, Jim James (My Morning Jacket), Taylor Goldsmith (Dawes), Marcus Mumford (Mumford & Sons) and Rhiannon Giddens (Carolina Chocolate Drops) to write music for those lyrics.  The musicians (calling themselves The New Basement Tapes) recorded an album in Los Angeles, and titled it Lost On The River.  The songs harken back to Dylan and The Band's storied Basement Tapes, but are also fascinating songs in their own right from this unique group.

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Studio One
9:17 am
Tue November 25, 2014

Hear Christopher The Conquered's Studio One Set

Christopher The Conquered performs in The Basement of the Des Moines Social Club, live on IPR's Studio One.
Credit IPR/Tony Dehner

On Nov. 20, Studio One partnered with The Des Moines Social Club to broadcast a live set from The Basement at the DMSC.  Christopher The Conquered was in fine form, playing for an appreciative hometown audience just days before leaving for a month-long tour in Italy.  We were treated to songs from the forthcoming record I'm Giving Up On Rock And Roll and more.  You can listen right here!

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun November 23, 2014

Featured Release This Week From TV On The Radio

Seeds is the fifth full-length album from TV On The Radio.  The band formed in Brooklyn, NY in 2001 and have retained the same line-up for most of their career.  Seeds is the first album from the group since the death (from cancer) of bassist Gerard Smith in 2011.

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Studio One
2:46 pm
Wed November 19, 2014

Hear The Sapwoods Studio One Live Set

The Sapwoods perform in IPR's Studio One.
Credit IPR/Tony Dehner

On November 18, the Iowa City band The Sapwoods returned to Studio One for a live performance.  Their second album, Peaks And Valleys, was released this past summer.  The Sapwoods are preparing for a Midwest tour beginning in January, and one of their gigs before a break for the holidays happened in our Cedar Falls studios.  The tight five-piece group was in fine form for this set.  Have a listen!

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun November 16, 2014

Featured Release This Week From Cold War Kids

Hold My Home is the fifth full-length release from Cold War Kids.  The band formed in Fullerton, California ten years ago, and remains based in the Golden State.  Cold War Kids have said that in the beginning, having instruments was secondary to their enthusiasm.  At band practices they thumped on walls, banged on heat pipes, stomped and chanted.  Cold War Kids now have more instruments, a steadily growing indie rock reputation, and a solid new album titled Hold My Home.

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun November 9, 2014

Featured Release This Week From Wampire

Bazaar is the second album from the Portland, Oregon band Wampire.  Childhood friends, songwriters and multi-instrumentalists Rocky Tinder and Eric Phipps honed their sound playing house parties in Portland as a duo.  Their band name is said to originate from the way that Phipps' goth friends from Germany pronounced "vampire."  After their debut album was released in the spring of 2013, Wampire expanded to a five-piece band and toured extensively.  Now comes the new record, Bazaar, with nine tracks of state-of-the-art indie rock!

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun November 2, 2014

Featured Release This Week From Ex Hex

Credit exhexband.com/

Rips is the debut album from the Washington, D.C. trio Ex Hex.  They have been described as a "power trio" with members that all happen to be women.  Mary Timony, known for her work in the bands Wild Flag and Helium, is the guitarist and lead vocalist in Ex Hex.  Laura Harris plays drums, and Betsy Wright is on bass.  Rips, released on the well-regarded indie label Merge Records, is catchy and melodic with big guitars and power pop vocals.

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Studio One
5:27 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

Halloween Treats From Studio One

When it comes to compiling a Halloween playlist, there are the staples like Michael Jackson’s “Thriller,” and “The Monster Mash” sung by the theatrical Bobby Boris Pickett. Oddly enough the 60s and 80s created a lot of the music that has ended up being played at nearly every Halloween event, but then every decade has produced some uncanny tracks. And for inspiration we’ve brewed up a short list of some of our favorites to spice up your Halloween festivities.

Scarlett Cerna, host of Studio One:

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Studio One
1:30 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

Hear The High Crest's Studio One Live Set

The High Crest performing in IPR's Studio One.
Credit IPR/Tony Dehner

The High Crest is the Des Moines-based duo of Aaron Earl Short and Kat Darling.  They brought their self-described "Folk & Roll" music to IPR's Cedar Falls studios for a heartfelt live set on Oct. 27.  Playing songs from their brand new 24-track double album Gone, as well as their self-titled debut album and more, The High Crest engaged the studio audience with their music of trials and hope.  Have a listen!

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun October 26, 2014

Featured Release This Week From Caribou

Canadian musician and composer Dan Snaith began recording his music as Manitoba around the turn of the century, but for legal reasons later changed his stage name to Caribou.  Inspired by psychedelia and electronica, Caribou has become known for creative compositions and arrangements, as well as experimental production.  In recent years, Caribou's music has retained those qualities, but also become more danceable.  That trend continues on the sixth studio album, Our Love.

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Studio One
2:19 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Hear King Of The Tramps' Studio One Live Set

King Of The Tramps performing in IPR's Studio One.
Credit IPR/Tony Dehner

The Iowa band King of The Tramps played a live set for Studio One on Oct. 21.  Their performance included songs from their third album, Joyful Noise.  That title and the band's own description of their music as "whiskey gospel" turned out to be apt descriptions of celebratory audience engagement and a raucous good time!  Listen to what I mean right here!

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun October 19, 2014

Featured Release This Week From King Tuff

The Studio One Featured Release this week is Black Moon Spell, the new album from King Tuff.  Band members are Kyle Thomas (also known as King Tuff) on guitar and vocals, with Magic Jake on bass, and Garett Goddard on drums.  King Tuff is from Vermont, and they record for the venerable indie label Sub Pop Records.  Black Moon Spell is their third full length album.  In describing their sound, King Tuff says "We make rock roll."  'Nuff said!  

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Studio One
2:45 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

Hear Project Trio Live In IPR's Studio One

Project Trio perform in IPR's Studio One.
Credit IPR/Tony Dehner

Project Trio were in Iowa recently for a performance schedule that included being a part of WCF Symphony's season opening concert on Oct. 11.  The Brooklyn, NY three-piece also stopped by IPR's Studio One for music and conversation.  Project Trio (Greg Pattillo on flute, Peter Seymour on bass, Eric Stephenson on cello) delightfully blur the edges of musical genres, as you can hear right here! 

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Studio One
2:41 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

Hear Mighty Shady's Studio One Live Set

Mighty Shady performs in IPR's Studio One.
Credit IPR/Tony Dehner

The Des Moines-based band Mighty Shady played a tight, energetic live set for Studio One on Monday, Oct. 13. The five-piece Mighty Shady combine rock, reggae, funk and more to create their own signature sound, as heard on their new album Double Think.  Have a listen to Mighty Shady, live on Studio One!

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun October 12, 2014

Featured Release This Week From David Zollo & The Body Electric

For Hire is the new album from David Zollo and The Body Electric.  The band includes Zollo on vocals and keyboards, Brian Cooper on drums, Stephen Howard on bass and electric guitar, and Randall Davis on acoustic and electric guitars and lap steel guitar.  Zollo, from Iowa City, has been called "practically the patron saint of (Iowa's) roots music underground."  He was the frontman for Iowa band High and Lonesome, started up Iowa City-based Trailer Records, and has been a session player on many projects over the years.

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun October 5, 2014

Featured Release This Week From Tweedy

Sukierae ​(pronounced "sue-key-ray") is the debut album from the duo Tweedy.  Tweedy is mainly Jeff Tweedy, best known for being the leader of Wilco, as well as his work in Uncle Tupelo with Jay Farrar (and the sometimes overlooked group Loose Fur).  Jeff is the guitarist, vocalist, bassist and keyboard player in Tweedy, joined by his 18-year old son Spencer on drums.  Sukierae certainly does not represent a great musical departure for Jeff Tweedy.

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Studio One
1:00 am
Sun September 28, 2014

Featured Release This Week From Pieta Brown

Credit Mei-Ling Shaw Williams

Iowa native Pieta Brown's latest record Paradise Outlaw is being released this week on the Red House label. It's the 6th full-length studio album from Pieta (daughter of Greg Brown), recorded at the Wisconsin studio of Bon Iver frontman Justin Vernon.  Vernon contributes vocals to a few songs, and Amos Lee is featured in a duet with Pieta Brown on the new album.  Guitarist and co-producer Bo Ramsey is vital to the sound of Paradise Outlaw, a record that Pieta Brown describes as "expansive...full of love."

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