Episode #24 | 10.30.18

Spade Cooley: Jealousy, Torture, Murder

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Spade Cooley was one of the Postwar America’s biggest celebrities and most talented musicians. He was also a violent, drunk and homicidal psychopath who had no heart. Mean, jealous, abusive and almost totally driven by the deep seeded insecurity that he wasn’t good enough for any of the women who flocked to see him in concert, on television and on the movie screen, Spade Cooley couldn’t bare the thought of his wife with another man so he he did the unthinkable and what followed was at the time, the trial of the century.


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The Californian: The Talented and Tormented Spade Cooley

Please Kill Me: The Wife and Death of Spade Cooley by Burt Kearns

Spade Cooley, A Novel by Ellen Melinkoff

Disgraceland is a podcast about musicians getting away with murder and behaving very badly. It melds music history, true crime and transgressive fiction. Disgraceland is not journalism. Disgraceland is entertainment. Entertainment inspired by true events. However, certain scenes, characters and names are sometimes fictionalized for dramatic purposes.


Score by Jake Brennan. 

Mixed and Engineered by Sean Cahalin.

Disgraceland theme song, "Crenshaw Space Boogie" written and produced by Jake Brennan. Performed by Jake Brennan, Bryce Kanzer, Jay Cannava and Evan Kenney. Mixed and engineered by Adam Taylor.

This episode featured the song, "One Lip Smile" by the Disgraceland Players. Written and produced by Jake Brennan, Adam Taylor and Tony Goddess and recorded at Bang A Gong Studios.

*illustration by Avi Spivak @avispivak