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John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM

DigiTrad:
BLACK IS THE COLOR OF MY TRUE LOVE'S HAIR (1)
BONNY FARDAY
DOWN IN YON FORREST
I LEARNED ABOUT HORSES FROM HER
LASS FROM THE LOW COUNTRY
THE SMART SCHOOLBOY
VENEZUELA (PASS AWAY TIME IN)


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Tune Req: Queen Eleanor's Confession (Child #156) (39)
Lyr Req: Down in Yon Forest (from John Jacob Niles (60)
Lyr Req: Black Oak Tree (John Jacob Niles) (21)
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(origins) Origin: Venezuela (John Jacob Niles) (17)
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Lyr Req/Add: He Hey! Why Do We Pay? (J J Niles) (7)
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Lyr Req: I Wonder as I Wander (John Jacob Niles) (24)
John Jacob Niles recordings (4)
Lyr Req: Go Way From My Window (7)
Lyr/Chords Req: So We'll Go No More A-Roving (19)
Lyr Req: I Wonder As I Wander (13)
Proselytizing (55)
Lyr/Tune Add: The Deceived Girl -Child9 (1)
Lyr Add: The Smart Schoolboy (Child #3) (1)
Lyr Req: Venezuela (John Jacob Niles) (6)


WFDU - Ron Olesko 07 Nov 10 - 09:22 AM
Nobodys bard 07 Nov 10 - 10:03 AM
Will Fly 07 Nov 10 - 10:34 AM
peregrina 07 Nov 10 - 10:40 AM
Nobodys bard 07 Nov 10 - 02:44 PM
Will Fly 07 Nov 10 - 04:20 PM
catspaw49 07 Nov 10 - 05:27 PM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 08 Nov 10 - 10:52 AM
ollaimh 08 Nov 10 - 11:10 AM
Lonesome EJ 08 Nov 10 - 11:59 AM
Nobodys bard 08 Nov 10 - 02:04 PM
GUEST,Howard Glasser 09 Nov 10 - 11:44 AM
Lighter 09 Nov 10 - 12:39 PM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 09 Nov 10 - 04:01 PM
GUEST,Suibhne Astray 09 Nov 10 - 05:29 PM
Lighter 09 Nov 10 - 07:20 PM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 10 Nov 10 - 09:47 AM
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Subject: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 07 Nov 10 - 09:22 AM

My guest today on WFDU-FM's TRADTIIONS will be Ron Pen, author of the new book "I Wonder as I Wander", a biography of John Jacob Niles.   We will discuss this influential and controversial figure of the American folk music tradition.   Samples of Niles recordings will also be shared during the program.

WFDU-FM'S TRADITIONS airs from 3 to 6pm Eastern Time and the interview will be heard during the 4pm hour.   You can tune into 89.1FM in the NYC area, or listen online at www.wfdu.fm . The show will also be available in our archives for the next two weeks only.


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: Nobodys bard
Date: 07 Nov 10 - 10:03 AM

John Jacob Niles is a strange character (musically) - I don't know much about him really (except what I read on wiki) but I have to say he has one of the oddest singing voices I think I've ever heard. There's another current thread on Mudcat at the moment about "raising performance standards" at Folk Clubs - I can't help wondering what some people would make of JJN if he turned up today & sang at such a venue? Anyway, sounds interesting - Will give your show a listen to find out more - thanks!


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: Will Fly
Date: 07 Nov 10 - 10:34 AM

Why should anyone criticise JJN's performance standards? He was an accomplished and seasoned performer. Whether one likes or dislikes his singing voice and style is, of course, a matter of personal taste. :-)


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: peregrina
Date: 07 Nov 10 - 10:40 AM

Dylan was mesmerized by Niles and writes evocatively about what discovering Niles meant to him in his autobiography.
Before the Martin Scorsese film about Dylan, it was almost impossible to find JJN on CD; the film included a bit about Dylan's reaction to Niles and contributed to the interest that led to the reissues.


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: Nobodys bard
Date: 07 Nov 10 - 02:44 PM

Will, I didn't really intend to imply that he wasn't a good performer - it's just that I can imagine (& indeed don't need to imagine as I've heard friends say : "what the f---k is THIS! when playing a recording of him) that he might not be to everybody's taste in this day & age ... & a lot of people might not "get him" - & unfortunately as an extension of that ... if he wanted to play (as an unknown performer today) he might get short thrift from some quarters ... that's all. But then again perhaps not ...

& indeed, of course, the same might be said of Bob Dylan ...

Anyway, looking forward to hearing the programme.


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: Will Fly
Date: 07 Nov 10 - 04:20 PM

I've heard friends say : "what the f---k is THIS! when playing a recording of him

Well, I can understand that! He can be a bit of an acquired taste... :-)


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: catspaw49
Date: 07 Nov 10 - 05:27 PM

If you're reading this thread, then I'd suggest you click onto THIS ONE. If you think it will be a waste, think again. Sandy Paton was at his best and from Art Thieme, among many other things, you'll find this gem:

"JJN's voice always reminded me of a banshee in heat---or the sounds that filled the night when the orphanage burned down."


Spaw


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 08 Nov 10 - 10:52 AM

John Jacob Niles NEVER claimed to be "authentic" in regards to his singing voice. That was the point.   In the 1930's, decades before the "Folk Era" (or "error" in some people's opinion), Niles was simply introducing songs, and creating songs, to bring to the attention of the general public. He was not collecting to preserve, just to create his own performance. The idea was to bring the music to the concert stage and elevate to the status of "art" songs.

In reality, how authentic did he need to be?   Is it considered "authentic" when a Jewish kid from the Bronx puts on an accent to sound like a Southern sharecropper?

I hope some of you had a chance to listen. I think Ron Pen explained Niles, warts and all, in his book.   The show is archived at www.wfdu.fm for the next two weeks.


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: ollaimh
Date: 08 Nov 10 - 11:10 AM

back in the seventies i found an album by jjn and it blew my mind. just off the turnip truck from nova scotia he had the spirit of my traditional music even if he had no stylistic similarity. and he was "merican.   so i was glad to find the reissues of his cds.

i always thought he was rooted in hois local tradition but used it creatively--which all traditional people de by the way. the "folk authenticators, can be very narrow minded.

back then nova scotia and new found land music was rejected by people i see posting on mudcat now extolling "tradition".

that being said he was a great performer . i suspect he created his dulcimer. i have never seen another like it


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 08 Nov 10 - 11:59 AM

The Irish Girl

actually, quite beautifully done, but maybe its just me


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: Nobodys bard
Date: 08 Nov 10 - 02:04 PM

Very interesting programme - & as you say in the show -
a fascinating character.

I've always been in two minds about JJN myself -
I want to like him, & sometimes do
but as Will Fly mentioned .. He can be a bit of an acquired taste
Quite high camp really.

However, give me one JJN over a hundred "smoother" but
characterless singers anyday ...

(once heard, you don't easily forget him!)

I also really enjoyed hearing the Richard Dyer-Bennett,
John Langstaff, & Ed-McCurdy songs & Susan Reid's lovely
rendition of Black Is The Colour.

Thanks.


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: GUEST,Howard Glasser
Date: 09 Nov 10 - 11:44 AM

During the late 40s - I was a great fan -The ballads and songs and his renditions - along with the L of C recordings drew me into an appreciation and passion for the real tradition --
His daughter was a drama student at Carnegie Mellon when I was teaching graphics there
He and his wife often visited - I got to know - and understand him a wee bit - I have heard many of the hard criticisms - but to know him as I did - I could only admire his creativity and talents - I did help in very minor ways with a local TV broadcast - and a little concert at the University - I wouldn't put a label on him - but what he did - reached me at the time - Still listening to his songs and stories - expressed as he did - are treasures to me.


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: Lighter
Date: 09 Nov 10 - 12:39 PM

Ron, what is the secret of finding the archived show at the WFDU website? It eludes me.


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 09 Nov 10 - 04:01 PM

To get to our archives -

Go to our homepage at www.wfdu.fm. Near the top of the page, click on "Show Archives"

You will come to our archive page. The easiest way to get to the program is to click on the words "Shows" and a list of our programs will come up. Click on "Traditions".

To listen, click on the show for "November 7, 2010".   

Our shows are archived for two weeks. The interview with Ron Penn about his book on John Jacob Niles can be heard in the second hour of the show.

Howard - it was great to see you at Eisteddfod on Sunday. I'm sorry I did not get to spend more time there, and more time chatting with you! I'm already looking forward to next year!


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
Date: 09 Nov 10 - 05:29 PM

Introduced my father-in-law to JJN tonight & he was mesmerised! Beautiful, beautiful singing - but here's a thing, somewhere in there I caught some definite pre-echoes of Ewan MacColl. See HERE for more on JJN's dulcimers.


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: Lighter
Date: 09 Nov 10 - 07:20 PM

Thanks, Ron. It was great show, well worth seeking out.


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Subject: RE: John Jacob Niles on WFDU-FM
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 10 Nov 10 - 09:47 AM

Thank you for the kind words. It was an enjoyable show to produce!


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