Soundbreaking: Schedule on THIRTEEN

Christina Knight | November 10, 2016

SoundbreakingPoster800wTHIRTEEN begins airing the series Soundbreaking on Monday, November 14 at 9pm with back-to-back episodes. The schedule on THIRTEEN breaks from the national PBS broadcast in a few ways, so here are the full details on when to watch what on THIRTEEN, the PBS station for the metropolitan region surrounding New York City (includes parts of New Jersey, parts of upstate New York, and parts of Connecticut).

Soundbreaking Schedule at a Glance

Monday, November 14 9-11pm: Episodes 1 and 2
Wednesday, November 16 10pm: Episode 3
Friday, November 18 9-11pm: Episodes 4 and 5
Monday, November 21 10pm: Episode 6
Tuesday, November 22 10pm: Episode 7
Wednesday, November 23 10pm: Episode 8

Monday, November 14

Episode 1 of Soundbreaking: The Art of Recording (9pm)

How does a music producer turn an artist’s vision into a hit? A close look at three producers.

    • George Martin and his work with the Beatles at Abbey Road.
      Interviews: Ringo Starr, George Martin, Brian Eno, Giles Martin, Rick Rubin, Tony Visconti
      Songs: “Please Please Me,” “Yesterday”, “Eleanor Rigby”
    • Dr. Dre, the most influential producer in hip hop.
      Interviews: Questlove, Jimmy Iovine, RZA, Q Tip, Dr. Luke
      Songs: “Nuthin But a G Thang”
    • Rick Rubin revitalized the career of Johnny Cash in the 1990s.
      Interviews: Rick Rubin, Johnny Cash (archive), Rosanne Cash, Tom Petty
      Songs: “Rusty Cage”, “I Don’t Hurt Anymore”

Dr.Dre at Coachella

Dr. Dre at Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival 2012. Photo by Jason Persse.

Episode 2 of Soundbreaking: Painting with Sound (10pm)

The recording studio itself effectively became an instrument and gave rise to sounds that could never be reproduced live. Beginning with the advent of magnetic tape and multi-tracking technology, episode 2 charts the evolution of multi-track recording.

    • George Martin and the Beatles’ work in the recording studio changes pop music forever.
      Interviews: George Martin, Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney, Elton John, Brian Eno, Tom Petty, Rick Rubin, Tony Visconti, Nigel Godrich
      Songs: “I Saw Her Standing There,” “Rain” “Tomorrow Never Knows”, “Within You Without You” “A Day in the Life”
    • Brian Wilson takes the Beach Boys to new heights with “Pet Sounds.”
      Interviews: Don Was, Hal Blaine, Carol Kaye, Paul McCartney
      Songs: “Good Vibrations”, “God Only Knows”, “Wouldn’t It Be Nice”
    • The Eurythmics talk about recording their first album at home on a simple analog machine.
      Interviews: Dave Stewart, Annie Lennox
      Songs: “Who’s That Girl”, “Love is a Stranger”
    • Beck, Bon Iver, St. Vincent, Tune-Yards, and Nigel Godrich, producer of Radiohead, talk about recording in the digital age.
      Songs: “Loser,” by Beck, “Bizness” by tUnE-yArDs, “Lotus Flower” and “Give up the Ghost” by Radiohead

Wednesday, November 16

Episode 3 of Soundbreaking: The Human Instrument (10pm)

Featuring rare studio footage of some the world’s most renowned vocalists––from blues divas to suave crooners to rock star screamers––the show considers the gamut of tricks and techniques that can both enhance and alter the human voice, and explores the ineffable emotional quality that makes a vocal track truly great.

    • Producer Paul Epworth talks about recording Adele’s hit “Rolling in the Deep.”
    • Amy Winehouse’s unique voice and how it was captured in the studio.
      Interviews: Mark Ronson, Ben Harper, Annie Lennox
      Songs: “Valerie” and “Rehab” by Amy Winehouse
    • The use of Auto-tune and vocal manipulation by artists like Kanye West, Roger Troutman, and Cher.
      Interviews: Ben Harper, Linda Perry
      Songs: “Love Lockdown” (K. West), “Believe” (Cher)

Friday, November 18

Episode 4 of Soundbreaking: Going Electric (9pm)

Going Electric traces both the chain reaction unleashed by the invention of the electric guitar and the evolution of synthesized music. From Delta blues to Chicago blues to The Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix, from Stevie Wonder and The Who to EDM, Episode Four reveals the power of technology to continuously redefine what music is.

    • The electric guitar and how it transformed music in the hands of Muddy Waters, Jimi Hendrix, and Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones.
    • Stevie Wonder and the creation of his five seminal albums in the 1970s.
    • The Black Keys discuss the making of their record “Brothers.”

Mick Jagger

Mick Jagger of The Rolling Stones looks at a Bob Dylan album. Soundbreaking Episode 4 covers The Rolling Stones sound. Photo courtesy of © The Bob Bonis Archive /

Episode 5 of Soundbreaking: Four on the Floor (10pm)

If the vocal track is the heart of a song, the rhythm track––the beat––is its body. It is the sonic element that taps into the most primal part of us and makes us want to move.
“Four on The Floor” breaks the beat down, and examines the endless experimentation that has taken place at its core, the very bedrock of all music.

    • Producers The Dream and Tricky Stewart talk about writing and recording Beyonce’s “Single Ladies”
    • The Disco Era: Chic, Donna Summer, and the Bee Gees
      Interviews: Nile Rodgers, Barry Gibbs
    • Post Disco: Blondie, Madonna and the sounds of the 80s
      Interviews: John Jellybean Benitez

Monday, November 21

Episode 6 of Soundbreaking: The World is Yours

A look at a musical revolution that was not only inspired by recording but born from its history: the art of sampling––a kind of musical equivalent of Adam’s rib. Beginning with the pioneers of hip hop (Afrika Bambaataa, Chuck D, Rick Rubin), episode 6 tracks the way in which the practice of borrowing fragments from existing records created a new genre––a potent musical form that emerged from the margins, up-ended the establishment, and set in motion a controversy over copyright that has yet to be resolved.

  • The rise of hip hop in the Bronx
  • Run-DMC and the first rap/rock single, “Walk this Way”, a collaboration with Aerosmith
  • The rise of Public Enemy
  • The Beastie Boys come on the scene
    Interviews: Robert Fitzgerald Diggs (RZA), Q Tip, Adam Horovitz, Mike Simpson, and more

Tuesday, November 22

Episode 7 of Soundbreaking: Sound and Vision

Sound and Vision considers what it means to see music as well as hear it. Tracking the music video from MTV to the internet, Sound and Vision tells the story of how a one-time marketing tool became a powerful mediator between artist and audience.

  • The artists who embraced video in the pre-MTV era: David Bowie, The Beatles, Blondie, Devo
  • Michael Jackson, Madonna, The Eurythmics
  • The Unplugged era, Nirvana’s memorable taping
  • Interviews: Billy Idol, The Eurythmics, Jimmy Jam, and more

Wednesday, November 23

Episode 8 of Soundbreaking: I Am My Music

From vinyl, cassette tape, CD, and MP3, each generation has had a piece of musical media to call its own – a way of listening that determines not only how and where we listen, but also the manner in which we collect, store, and share the music we love.

  • Frank Sinatra invents the concept album with In the Wee Small Hours
  • Miles Davis and Marvin Gaye use the long-playing record for new kinds of expression
  • The story of Bob Dylan recording “Like a Rolling Stone”
  • The Grateful Dead and the rise of the bootleg cassette tape
  • Interviews: Steven Van Zandt, Jerry Lieber, Don Was, Neneh Cherry and more

Learn how the series was made in this Q&A with the creators.