This semester on WRCT, live music is better than ever. One of our weekly programs, WRCT: A Live Show, has been pulling in some quality local acts, from metal to bluegrass and indie.

This past Tuesday, we had Joe Materkowski, a singer/songwriter who did a killer set and answered some of our questions on air.

“I’ve listened to music my whole life.... Whenever I was a young kid, after dinner my folks would clean up, and go watch TV, but set up the record player in the back room for me, and I always kind of liked to listen to my dad’s Beatles records for an hour a night,” Joe said about his musical background after serenading the studio with his original song, “Going Home.”

Joe brought a ukulele with him, and played “Lucky Man” by Emerson, Lake & Palmer on the tiny four-stringed instrument. It was definitely the first time Emerson, Lake & Palmer has been covered like that at WRCT. Joe and our host, B­Side, talked about another project, Abacus Jones, which Joe plays in with his brother. He referred to the band as a “conceptual cover band” that plays shows at casinos, parties, and everything in between.

Recently, Abacus Jones played for over one hundred inmates at a maximum security prison in Greene County. “It took us a long time to get all of our clearances together,” Joe said. “I was working with a few of the guards that were helping me out. It was an awesome show, though. I was kind of nervous about it, but everyone was really perceptive — guards and prisoners alike. We tried to mix up the music as much as possible.... Different people responded to different songs but there were certain songs that everybody really loved.... It was really cool, you know, I actually got to talk to a few inmates at the end and everyone was really cool.”

For more info about Joe Materkowski and Abacus Jones, check out abacusjones.com.

If you want to hear more awesome live music, tune in to WRCT: A Live Show, every Tuesday from 10–­11 p.m. at wrct.org, or at 88.3 FM.