“Mind-blowingly great… Quite simply, Underground Garage is the most exciting thing to happen on rock and roll radio in years.” - Rolling Stone
"Stevie plays all the music you need to hear and gives young bands the chance they deserve." - Bruce Springsteen
“It’s the best Rock and Roll Radio show in the world. Period.” - Billie Joe Armstrong
“It’s the first thing I listen to in the morning. It always sounds good late at night. One of my favorite things to do is listen to it on the way to band practice because I get inspired.” - Eddie Vedder
What do Buddy Holly, The White Stripes, The Shangri-Las, The Beatles, and The Ramones have in common? Little Steven’s Underground Garage!
In April of 1954 “Rock Around The Clock” was recorded by Bill Haley and the Comets, and three months later, Elvis Presley recorded “That’s All Right Mama”. From these small steps, and the help of other pioneers one of the most important and influential cultural forces over the past half-century was created, Rock and Roll.
Fast forward to 2002 and Stevie Van Zandt launches Little Steven’s Underground Garage, his nationally syndicated Rock and Roll radio show. Each week Little Steven takes audiences on a two hour trip through all 60 years of Rock and Roll, and it's roots. The Rock pioneers like Little Richard Chuck Berry, and Bo Diddley, Blues: Muddy Waters, Elmore James, Sonny Boy Williamson, Little Walter, DooWop: the Students Jive-Five, Channels, Dubs, Dion and the Belmonts, Surf Rock like Dick Dale, Beach Boys, Jan & Dean, Girl Groups like Shirelles, Chiffons, Shangri-Las, Crystals, Ronettes, 60's Soul like Sam Cooke, Curtis Mayfield, Marvin Gaye, Marvelettes Temptations, Sam & Dave, Otis Redding, the British Invasion like the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Animals, Small Faces, Yardbirds, Procol Harum, Kinks, Pretty Things, Who, Dave Clark 5, Folk Rock like the Byrds, Bob Dylan, the Turtles, and Lovin’ Spoonful, Country Rock like Buffalo Springfield, Moby Grape, and the Youngbloods, Psychedelic like Jefferson Airplane, Donovan, Jimi Hendrix Experience, Blues Magoos, Power Pop like the Raspberries, Cheap Trick, Punk like Joan Jett, the Clash, the Ramones, the Deadboys, Sex Pistols and everything in between, alongside the best new Rock and Roll bands in the world.Not only does The Underground Garage play the coolest Rock records ever made, but it has helped introduce over 700 new bands throughout the history of the show. Over 40% of the format dedicated to new music and emerging artists.
The show also features history, anecdotes, fun facts, and occasional interviews. It is broadcast on over 80 stations in 200 plus markets, including internationally in Canada, London, Italy, Spain, Ireland, Sweden, Belgium, Peru, and Australia, as well as worldwide on the American Forces Network and Voice of America. Over 760 weekly episodes have aired and have included such special guests as Jack Black, Brian Wilson, Ray Davies, Peter Wolf, Iggy Pop, Ringo Starr, Keith Richards, Paul McCartney, and Bruce Springsteen, and has been endorsed by rock and roll legends like David Bowie, Pete Townshend, Jack White, Lou Reed, Ozzy Osbourne, Robert Plant, and many, many others.
“The coolest DJ in the country. A proud throwback to the late-night hipster jocks of long-gone 1960's
and '70s FM Radio.” - MTV
The success of the radio show has allowed Little Steven’s Underground Garage to expand beyond the world of radio into television, live events, albums, satellite radio, and more.
The Underground Garage / Renegade Nation have presented hundreds of live events and like the radio show they feature Rock and Roll legends, while also showcasing the best up and coming bands and local talent.
Over a hundred “Underground Garage A Go-Go” and "Underground Garage Presents" concerts. The most recent being a partnership with the Hard Rock Cafe Yankee Stadium and the New York Yankees for 8 pre game concerts at Yankee Stadium before Friday home games featuring up and coming bands from the radio show.
“The Underground Garage International Festival” with over 40 bands co-headlined by Iggy Pop and The Stooges, and The Strokes that Entertainment Weekly called “an awe inspiring event” and the Village Voice named it “Concert Of The Year.”
“The 500th Show” radio special featuring Green Day, Debbie Harry, and more from the Hard Rock Cafe New York.
“The Underground Garage Stage” at the Hard Rock Calling Festivals.
Three national tours featuring over 50 bands including the New York Dolls, The Zombies, The Supersuckers, and more.
“The Outlaw Country Cruise” a sold out 5 day music festival cruise with over 25 bands including Lucinda Williams, Steve Earle, Blackberry Smoke and more.
“CBGB Forever” rally in Washington Square Park.
“Teen Vogue’s - Rock Meets the Runway” from the Hard Rock Cafe New York.
“The Rascals: Once Upon A Dream”, the critically acclaimed theatrical event/reunion concert tour that included a 15 night sold out run on Broadway.
“The MTV Underground Garage National Battle of the Bands”
VH1 Halloween special, “Cheap Trick or Treat Halloween Ball” from the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Tampa
The first New Years Eve Concert Special on ESPN co hosted by Little Steven and Stuart Scott filmed live from the Hard Rock Cafe New York.
2007 marked the beginning of Wicked Cool Records, the imprint Van Zandt started to further support Rock and Roll. Among the label’s releases are eleven critically acclaimed compilations featuring music from Little Steven’s Underground Garage
“CBGB FOREVER”, a tribute album to the legendary New York City Rock club featuring classic CBGB bands like Blondie and the Ramones, alongside bands influenced by CBGB such as U2 and the Foo Fighters.
“Halloween A Go-Go” that David Fricke of Rolling Stone called “So cool it's scary!.. genius -- just like the radio show!”
“Christmas A Go-Go” which Entertainment Weekly named one of their top 10 Holiday must haves.
“The Coolest Songs In The World (Vol. 1-8)” “If Murray "The K" Kaufman can host a series of great compilation albums featuring top singles in the '60s … why shouldn't Little Steven Van Zandt, host of the best rock & roll radio show of the new millennium, bring this great tradition back to life?” - All Music Guide
In 2003 after the success of “Little Steven's Underground Garage” Sirius Satellite Radio recruited Steven to create it's first original content. He would start the services first 24/7 branded music channels, while also continuing to record his syndicated terrestrial show.
One was “The Underground Garage”. Stylistically the format is a continuation of the syndicated terrestrial show. Spanning multiple genres the music is fully integrated so that listeners hear records from Rock pioneers juxtaposed with records by present day bands – and artists from the five decades between. Steven would hire Rock and Roll personalities from various backgrounds as DJ's to add their own stories and anecdotes to the music.
The other was “Outlaw Country”. In the same spirit as the “Underground Garage” the channel spans various genres including classic Honky Tonk, Alternative Country, Americana, Southern Rock, Roots Rock, and more while playing the legends of Outlaw Country like Johnny Cash, and Merle Haggard alongside up and coming artists like Sturgill Simpson and Blackberry Smoke.
“Outlaw Country is the sanctuary for the freaks, misfits, rebels, and renegades of country music."