Good stories and good music are two things everyone wants more of, especially in their podcast feeds. With their extensive experience in music and podcasting, Nevermind Media, led by Peabody Award-winner Sean Cannon (Striped: The Story Of The White Stripes, The Guestlist) and music journalist Melissa Locker, set out to give the people what they want. Nevermind Media combines the emotional power of music with irresistible storytelling and immersive audio experiences that take a deep dive into music history and fandom. On June 16, Nevermind Media will launch its latest podcast, Songs in the Key of Death, a historiography that combines music, true crime, history, and edge-of-your-seat storytelling.
Hosted by music critic and author Courtney Smith (Refinery29, MTV, Record Collecting For Girls), Songs in the Key of Death looks at the historic true crimes that inspired a selection of murder ballads, with season- one exploring some of the most notorious and well-known crimes of the early 20th century. Each episode focuses on a single murder ballad that has been passed down by scores of singers, with each generation telling their own version of events and putting a new spin on stories of very real, often gruesome slaughters. After being told and retold, these songs and the murders that inspired them have become legends. The show looks at the violent criminals we can’t stop singing about, the grisly history they reflect, and the underrepresented voices of victims who didn’t get to tell their own stories.
Brilliant artists SAD13 and Will Oldham (Bonnie “Prince” Billy) take turns creating new versions of the songs featured in each episode. Episode 1 of Songs in the Key of Death focuses on “Delia,” written about the Christmas night killing of a 13-year-old Black girl in Georgia — although you wouldn’t guess that from the version popularized by Johnny Cash. Today, fans can hear SAD13’s updated take titled “Delia ”, debuted with Rolling Stone, in which Delia gets her revenge on the boy who killed her, ahead of the episode’s launch on June 16.
Subscribe now to get season 1 of Songs in the Key of Death everywhere you listen to podcasts.