Saturday, February 21, 2009


You probably know that on March 29 Ron Olesko and I will be hosting a benefit concert that will be taking place on that afternoon at 2 PM in Fairlawn NJ at the facility used by the Hurdy Gurdy Folk Music Club ( you can click on that link to see the line-up and buy tickets. It is a benefit for WFDU---lot of work but it sure beats hounding you on the air---don't you think? And look at the enjoyment you will get for a fraction of what you would pay to see these people in their usual venues in NYC---and they are donating their time and talent---TOM CHAPIN, JULIE GOLD, CHRISTINE LAVIN, ABBIE GARDNER & ANTHONY DACOSTA, GATHERING TIME, PAT WICTOR in no particular order. They appreciate the station and its programming as much as you all do and they are taking time out of their busy schedules to donate their time and talent for this---and also allow Ron and I to banter with them on the stage. I hope banter is the right word---I know it is for me and a few of the guests.

Now for the nostagia.

Are any of you railroad buffs of the great days of railroading. I know I am. I used to go to summer camp on a steam train, went to Calif. in the 1950s on the NY Central to Chicago and onward with some great trains like the Zephyrs and Sunset Ltd.---and never forget the Southern Crescent through New Orleans from the West Coast and the City of New Orleans of the Illinois Central (as made famous by Steve Goodman).

Enjoy now a look at the past glory days railroading (which Europe & Japan still enjoy) and mail to me at or comment here with requests for RR songs and I will put together a nice set of that material when I accumulate your choices. I shall also be announcing this on TRADITIONS on 2/22/09.

So there you have it. The glorious days of railroading and there you are. Surely there are glorious days of flying but for some reason railroading still sticks in the mind of the songwriters and nostalgia buffs. "Leaving on a Jet Plane" does evoke an image. But, honestly, are you as moved by that as you are by the image of, say, Steve Goodman's "City of New Orleans" or some of Hank Williams RR pieces among others.

So if you have RR songs you want on Traditions do e mail me at or leave a comment here if you like.

A few thoughts to think about---they do not have to be RR songs from the U S . The songs can be from anywhere---think Marais Miranda---or any other nation you may conjure in your mind that makes you reminiscent of railroading. A few thoughts you might consider---Night Train To Memphis, Pan American, Train To Kimberley, Midnight Special, Wabash Cannonball, and I know you will surely want City of New Orleans---shall we stick with dear departed Steve on this?

Thursday, February 19, 2009


You are all aware that I host SUNDAY SIMCHA (which airs 10-11 AM ET) as well as co-hosting TRADITIONS (which airs 3-6 PM ET).

During our fund raising time both programs suffered from the neglect of our regular features which now are back in full force----like it or not. You know---Comedy Corner (Sunday Simcha) and Story Songs and a look back at that old Dave Miller slogan for WPAT in the '50s--Thrills of The Hills, Tops in Pops and Best in The West(Traditions). Since so many of you have helped support both programs I can only say---once again--thanks for your support and you have kept something you want on the air-waves. Here now is a bit of a rare treat by two great musical stars---the late (sadly) Bruce Adler and Mike Burstyn---Mike you will recall was a guest of mine on Feb. 22 and is now appearing in LANSKY in NYC at St. Lukes Theater.

Who knows maybe this will encourage those of you who listen only to TRADITIONS to join me on SUNDAY SIMCHA as well. I was quite delighted to find a few of our pledgers to that program (Sunday Simcha) were not of the Jewish faith and crossed the proverbial cultural aisle to sample the things we offer---just as on TRADITIONS we offer secular and non-secular material in all shapes and sizes---even 1/2 sizes which I can get you wholesale.

I hope you enjoyed that and perhaps you will go to see Mike Burstyn in a non musical treat---LANSKY.

As to TRADITIONS a bit of exciting news to impart to you. David Buskin what scamp from Modern Man has now reunited with his long time compatriot Robin Batteau and so---Buskin and Batteau are back and will be my guests for some live music and banter on March 22. Do not miss this and try to not reminisce over the earlier program I hope you were tuned in for---SUNDAY SIMCHA.

I suppose a picture of David and Robin should be included----

photo by Jake Jacobson

Since the picture shattered no mirrors I am guessing it is OK to publish it here.

I have to admit that what I say at the end of the Sunday Simcha hour is truly correct---"...the eclectic weekend sound of WFDU." Look at an earlier post and you will see to what I refer---also some pix of people who's reflection does appear in a mirror---mine---only after sundown.

Finally let me just add that if you have any requests for particular pieces for either program you can comment here or e mail them (look at that screwing the PO out of 42 cents) to these addresses: