Ron Olesko

Welcome to the home page for my “Folk Music Notebook.” Here is where you’ll find regular musings about the music I love, play on the radio, and bring to the Hurdy Gurdy Coffeehouse … along with my playlists (see sidebar) for “Traditions” (heard on WFDU), and, hopefully, a whole lot more. You can subscribe to this blog by selecting one of the links in the sidebar to the right.

To access any of the full posts excerpted below, just click on the title. Enjoy!

Ron     

2017 NERFA Formal Showcase Artists Announced

I have been attending the Northeast Regional Folk Alliance Conference (NERFA) since the late 1990s. This annual gathering of artists, DJs, promoters, presenters and fans has been a gathering that has a profound influence on me. NERFA provides an opportunity to meet with old friends, hear “new” artists and to … → read more

Old Songs 2017: A Review

Readers of this blog will note that I have frequently discussed, reviewed and extolled the virtues of the Old Songs Festival that takes place each June in Altamont, New York. I am happy to report that the 2017 edition, the 37th Annual Old Songs Folk Festival of Traditional Music and … → read more

Pat Wictor’s Vision of Phil Ochs

One of the most remarkable recordings that crossed my threshold in recent months is Pat Wictor’s This Is Absolutely Real: Visions and Versions of Phil Ochs. Keeping himself busy as a member of Brother Sun, it has been eight years since Pat last released a solo recording. As the trio … → read more

Bev Grant Gets Personal

You can trace the start of Bev Grant’s socially conscious songwriting to the turbulent era of the late 1960s. The anti-war and civil rights movements helped galvanize her as an activist and artist. Her involvement in the burgeoning women’s liberation movement of the era would find her writing songs with … → read more

Clearwater Festival to Sail Again in 2017

Following a one-year hiatus, the Great Hudson River Revival is returning to Croton Point Park in Croton-on-Hudson, New York on June 17 and 18. Evolved out of a local “folk picnic” organized by Toshi Seeger and her husband Pete Seeger in 1966, the Great Hudson River Revival was first held … → read more

We Can Turn this Ship Around

Christine Lavin gets political!

Remember last summer when we couldn’t wait for the election to be over so we could get back to normalcy? Remember our hopes of uniting this country again and finding common ground? With the inauguration of Donald Trump looming this coming week, our lives seem anything but normal. A line … → read more

Caffè Lena Set to Re-Open on December 30

On December 30, the historic Caffè Lena in Saratoga Springs, New York will once again open their doors following six months of construction and renovation. The eager patrons of the landmark venue have quickly snapped up tickets and the “re-opening” night concert featuring The Suitcase Junket is now officially sold … → read more