Last December, Down Home Radio co-founder Henrietta Yurchenco passed away at the age of 91. I met her when she was 89 and we had a great time doing this show together and generally hanging out in the last 2 years of her life. She was a tremendously accomplished person who over a very long career left an amazing musical and historical legacy, some of which has been preserved for us to hear. For a short history of her carreer read my essay, her obituary from the New York Times, her excellent autobiography, or visit her website.
Starting now I will begin to bring out some of the things from her archives which I have or can get my hands on. In this entry I am re-posting a very remarkable show we did in January of ’07, airing a radio show Henrietta produced for WNYC in 1940 at the beginning of her career – It was Leadbelly’s show, and that week the guest was Woody Guthrie. This amazing show was recorded in excellent quality, preserved and found by the archivist at WNYC! We re-aired it together with Henrietta’s comentary 67 years later. So look out for more excellent material from the Yurchenco archives, as well as all the shows we hosted here on Down Home Radio.
This week Henrietta and Eli discuss outlaw ballads and how criminals are transformed into popular heroes. In conjunction with that and of extra special interest, they rebroadcast a show Henrietta produced for WNYC radio back in 1940. It is Leadbelly’s show and he has as his guest, Woody Guthrie. This program has not been heard since it was first broadcast 67 years ago! Down Home would like to thank WNYC and archivist Andy Lanset for providing us with this rare material.