These days, radio is a medium often relegated to background noise -- buzzing through the kitchen, perhaps, as you prepare dinner. That's why it's so nice of Will Payne of Pirate Cat Radio to host Sound Bites
, a fine, filling radio show about food you can really sink your ears into. The program features interviews with local culinary heroes as well as sweet sets of food-themed music. Secret dinner maestro Leif Hedendal
, Chad Newton
of Fish & Farm, and Letitia Landa of La Cocina
have recently appeared; between fat-chewing, the tummy-rumbling tunes of note have included "Vegetables" by The Beach Boys, off Smile
, and "Yam, the King of Crops" by The Mountain Goats.
We asked Payne how he got started, and he broke it down like a brittle hunk of old Halloween candy: "There's very little radio programming covering food, from NPR down to smaller local stations, and I saw an unmet appetite," he said. Payne suggested that cooking is a conversation, shaped by what he called "anecdote, memory, quotation, and riffing off the atmosphere of where you are, who you're speaking to." Catch the conversation at 87.9 FM Sundays, 5-6 p.m., or listen online.