Archive for April 2010

The Tillers Perform Some New Songs

Thursday, April 29th, 2010

The Tillers perform 3 songs from their new album, “By the Signs.”  Check it out!  And be sure to check them out on May 23rd, live at the upcoming Brooklyn Folk Festival. I filmed these videos at the Jalopy Theater during the Tillers last swing through NYC when they stopped by for a Wednesday night performance at Roots n Ruckus.  Looking forward to having them back at folk fest!

Cardinal Train – a Tillers original from their new album.

Ezekial Saw the Wheel – this is their version of an old traditional song Woody Guthrie used to do.

George Street Beat- a Tillers original from their new album.

Saturday, April 24th, 2010

Here is a brief excerpt from the film “Homemade American Music” made by Carrie and Yasha Aginsky in 1980, featuring Mike Seeger and Alice Gerrard as they pay a visit to Roscoe Holcomb.   This film follows Mike and Alice as they visit Tommy Jarrell, Lily May Ledford, Roscoe Holcomb and Elizabeth Cotten and recount their own history as musicians and students of the music.

The complete 40 minute film is available for viewing at:,153

This incredible incredible website features literally dozens of amazing folkloric documentary films, mostly on music but also on other folk art forms.  It is worth it to watch everyone of these films- visit today!

The Hundred Songs

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

peter stampfel 4 by This Week in New York:

On today’s show I speak with Peter Stampfel and Jeannie Scofield.  In 2004 Peter Stampfel, founder of The Holy Modal Rounders and early member of the Fugs, began a project to research and record one song from every year of the 20th century.  Early on in the project he met singer Jeannie Scofield and they have been working on it together these past 6 years.  This amazing project is getting near completion, and we get a sneak preview of it today as they perform live on the show.  Peter and Jeannie create a wonderful sound and put their own stamp on a number of great songs drawn from their survey of 20th century American popular music.  There’s a lot of great songs back there!

Also be sure to check out Peter’s new solo CD, Dook of the Beatniks.

And check out the interview and live performance I recorded with Peter Stampfel and John Cohen from back in the 2006 DHR archives!

Brooklyn Folk Festival Approaches…

Monday, April 12th, 2010

Hey Everybody!  Look out for the next Brooklyn Folk Festival – May 21-23rd, 2010 at the Jalopy Theater!  Its gonna be fun…

CLICK HERE for more details.

Radio Unnamable with Bob Fass

Thursday, April 8th, 2010

Radio Unnameable Documentary Trailer from Lost Footage Films

Radio Unnamable on WBAI 99.5fm New York is one of my favorite all time radio programs.  Its host Bob Fass (probably arguably) invented “free form” radio with the shows inception in 1963, and continues to be its greatest practitioner to this day.  Over the years Bob has had an incredible array of guests on his program, everyone from musicians like Bob Dylan, Skip James, Muddy Waters, Rambling Jack Elliot, The Holy Modal Rounders and Sis Cunningham, to Leftist political/cultural figures like Abbie Hoffman, Allen Ginsberg, Ed Sanders, Timothy Leary, Wavy Gravy and so many others.  Radio Unnamable was one of the prime focal points in the media for the 1960’s era counter culture both musically and politically.  Luckily many episodes of this amazing program were taped and have survived so there is a large archive that is slowly being digitized, a little taste of which is up here on Down Home Radio.  This material will only be available for a couple days, I can’t keep it up indefinitely, so check it out now! –> time’s up on the audio, hope you enjoyed it, and keep checking back to DHR since I will be posting up more Radio Unnamable audio in the future.

The folks over at Lost Footage Films are in the middle of making a documentary about this historic radio show, and they need your help.  So check out their fund raising website and help them out if you can so they can finish the film.

On today’s show we hear a few selections from the Radio Unnamable archives, courtesy of Lost Footage Films.  The first is Jack Elliott and Arlo Guthrie live on the show.  This is a pretty stoned out episode from 1967.  Jack sings his talking song about truck driving and then Arlo sings a very different version of his hot off the press Alice’s Restaurant song with a totally different “story.”  They’re obviously having a very good time!  In the 2nd selection from Radio Unnamable on the show today we hear a remarkable recording that Bob Fass made as reporter.  In 1968 he traveled to Chicago to cover the protest of the Democratic National Convention which ended in a major over reaction by the first Mayor Daley’s police department.  Bob interviews protesters, gets tear gassed and reports on this now historic day.  In the 3rd piece of audio we hear Abbie Hoffman calling in to Radio Unnamable to report on his own trial as a defendant in the Chicago 7 case.   This was a landmark case were a number of leaders of the ’68 protest were charged with conspiracy to incite riot.  The trial became a circus, a piece of political theater where counter cultural figures of every stripe paraded through the court room as witnesses and brought the 60’s counterculture more out in to the open, mass media, etc… on and on.  Good stuff.  This is a departure for Down Home Radio which usually sticks to folk music, but I just couldn’t sit on this stuff.  Hope you enjoy.

As a side note- I will be on Radio Unnamable tonight! with Peter Stampfel and The Dust Busters.  Bob Fass is still on the air and Radio Unnamable airs every Thursday night from midnight till 3am or so on WBAI 99.5fm and is is archived on the WBAI website.


Blind Boy Paxton on Down Home TV

Friday, April 2nd, 2010

Here’s the 2nd installment of our new venture into Down Home TV.  That same night after speaking with Mamie Minch, Jerron “Blind Boy” Paxton stopped by and I was able to film a segment with him.  If you’ve heard the interview from a year and a half ago that I did with him (when he was only 19) then you know that he is a truly amazing guitarist, banjoist and stride-piano player as well as an excellent singer.  On today’s show Blind Boy plays a few guitar and banjo pieces for us on camera and talks a little bit about his background.  For more information, be sure to check out the extended audio interview with him from back in the DHR Archives.

Thanks go once again to filmmaker Chris Low and his crew for shooting and editing this footage.