Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

Out this week, Childhood Home is the first album-length collaboration between Ben Harper and his mother, Ellen, a lifelong musician who runs Claremont, California's Folk Music Center. The combination music store / museum, opened by Ellen's parents in 1958, has hosted everyone from Leonard Cohen to Taj Mahal.

A single mother, Ellen put her professional musical ambitions on hold to raise three boys. Now back on the road, she's stepped into something far removed from those nascent coffee shop folk days, thanks to Ben's superstardom. When I met up with them, they were staying at the Ritz, just below Central Park, doing phone interviews with international press and making a handful of television appearances ahead of the new record.


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