Podcast: Election Day
Episode #16-44 | airing 11-02-16

Well the end is almost upon us. It’s been a harrowing 600 plus days of campaigning and this week’s program is dedicated to election day. There has been so much childish rancor on both sides that the issues that really matter to the American People have been ignored. This week … → read more

Finding A Voice

& WFDU-FM’s TRADITIONS Playlist for June 26, 2016 Justin Timberlake, who earned dubious street cred in the folk community for his role as a folksinger in the Coen Brothers film Inside Llweyn Davis, found himself in deeper hot water last weekend at the BET Awards. It started with Timberlake tweeting … → read more

Podcast: Give Thanks
Episode #15-48 | airing 11-25-15

Thanksgiving is a very special time of the year. Even more than Christmas it’s a time for friends and family to gather when the only pressure is if the pies turn out like Grandma used to make. On this week’s program we’ll hear some songs about travel, food, family and … → read more

Ewan MacColl Centenary CD Tribute

Preview of a new 2-CD set honoring Ewan MacColl and WFDU-FM’s TRADITIONS Playlist for September 13, 2015   This week’s show featured a spotlight on a new CD collection that celebrates one of the folk revival’s most influential artists in honor of the 100th anniversary of his birth. Born in … → read more

The Seegers and the Ramones – WFDU-FM’s TRADITIONS playlist and program notes for July 13, 2014

Ron Olesko on the air at WFDU-FM on June 15, 2004

WFDU-FM’s TRADITIONS July 13, 2014 HOST: Ron Olesko Two musical “families” were showcased on today’s show, the Ramones and the Seegers. Starting a show with a memorial tribute to a member of the seminal punk band the Ramones might seem odd for a folk radio program, unless you knew Tommy … → read more

Poor Ellen Smith

Neko Case Ellen Smith was shot through the heart in July of 1892. Peter DeGraff had been romantically involved with Smith. He stood trial for her murder, was convicted, and was executed for it thirteen months after Smith’s death. At least two songs about this terrible, yet all too typical … → read more

Who Killed…Cock Robin?

“I, said the Sparrow, with my bow and arrow” Introduction There are at least two things I’m not going to do in today’s post. There are at least two things I am going to do. The first thing I am not going to do is to spend a lot of … → read more

Who’s really guilty here? Or, if it’s not Scottish…

Here we have Ewan MacColl’s version of Child #73, from his Classic Scots Ballads.  Thanks, Pat, for mentioning it.  The song is sung in Scots, and there are a few passages which I have yet to understand clearly, but the gist of the narrative and its differences with “Fair Ellender” … → read more


I’d like to share a few thoughts about the Pete Seeger 90th Birthday Celebration at Madison Square Garden. If you were there, or even if you couldn’t make it, I would love to hear your thoughts as well. Please feel free to enter a comment below. I was blown away … → read more