‘Final Sessions’ will chronicle the ‘long and fascinating narrative’ behind the late singer-songwriter’s first release in nearly 40 years.
25 years after his death, iconic singer-songwriter Harry Nilsson is getting his very own podcast.
In anticipation of the Nov. 22 release of Losst and Founnd — a forthcoming album of Nilsson demos that collect the final recordings made by the late singer — Warner Chappell has announced a new four-part limited series detailing the “long and fascinating narrative” behind the release. Entitled Final Sessions and hosted by Joe Levy (a contributor to Billboard), the podcast — each season of which will delve into another of “music’s most notable releases” — will also explore Nilsson’s music, his close friendship with The Beatles, his family life and how his backstory informed his songs.
“I’m a big Nilsson fan, so the news of Losst and Founnd was exciting in and of itself — but to take a step back and talk about how this album came about, and delve into Nilsson’s songwriting process, it’s a really special thing,” said Warner Chappell Music Senior VP, Creative Services Ashley Winton in a statement. “This podcast is a great example of how Warner Chappell is finding and building opportunities that highlight the great songs in the WCM catalog and telling the incredible stories of our songwriters. I’m honored to be a part of it.”
The first episode of Final Sessions season one produced by bang/Audiation, was put out today (Nov. 1) on all platforms. A new episode is slated to air every Friday in November leading up to the album’s release.
“It’s not a simple story of old tapes discovered, dusted off, and cleaned up for release,” Levy notes in a quote pulled from the podcast’s first episode. “This was a labor of love that required many of Nilsson’s old friends: drummer Jim Keltner, arranger Van Dyke Parks, songwriter Jimmy Webb, as well as Nilsson’s son bassist Kiefo Nilsson…”
Produced by Mark Hudson (Ringo Starr, Aerosmith, Ozzy Osbourne), Losst and Found features nine Nilsson originals as well as covers by Webb and Yoko Ono. It is the first album of new material from Nilsson since 1980’s Flash Harry.
Nilsson died in 1994 of a heart attack at the age of 52. During his life, he released a total of 15 studio albums and racked up three top 10 hits on the Hot 100: “Everybody’s Talkin’,” “Coconut” and the No. 1 single “Without You.”
You can check out a breakdown of each episode of Final Sessions season one below.
Final Sessions Episodes:
1. Rescuing The Rescue Boy: Harry Nilsson was one of greatest singers and songwriters of the 1970s, but by the time of his death in 1994 he hadn’t released an album for more than a decade. What happened? And how did the recordings he was making — up until two days before his death — go unheard for 25 years?
2. There’s No More Yesterday: John Lennon and Paul McCartney declared Harry Nilsson their favorite artist, and invited him to London during the recording of the White Album. He wrote and recorded with all four Beatles, but he worshipped John Lennon, whose death would reshape Harry’s life.
3. You’ve Had a Buckeroo Day: In 1967, as he was recording his first album, Harry Nilsson made a startling discovery: the father he thought killed in World War II was still alive. His music dreamed of a different childhood, but he may have had to stop making it to make those dreams real.
4. Cut To An Old Man, Thinking About His Life Span: He sang about love and death — sometimes in the same song — up until the very end. Harry Nilsson, says one friend, had a boxing problem with God.