A Lot to Say – Into the World of Hip-Hop

Editor’s Note: Sue Barrett contributes articles to this blog and retains all rights to this and all articles that appear here.

By Sue Barrett


Miss Kinnie Starr’s the name

I was born to bear the flame

that excites you to the game of contemplation

now just enjoy this here collision

rock ‘n roll folk hip hop fusion

(Kinnie Starr, ‘Sex in the Prairies’)


A somewhat bemused owner of a record store in Australia led the way to his small collection of hip-hop CDs. Then he made the collection even smaller by removing several miscategorised CDs (including the only one by a female artist).

With the release of the nominations for the 57th Grammy Awards, and Iggy Azalea’s four nominations (including Best Rap Album), the record store’s hip-hop collection might now be growing.

It was at the 31st Grammy Awards, in February 1989, that a Rap category appeared in the Awards for the first time (albeit with the award apparently presented prior to the telecast) – DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince won Best Rap Performance, with ‘Parents Just Don’t Understand’.

Other winners at the 31st Grammy Awards included George Michael (Album of the Year, with Faith), Bobby McFerrin (Record of the Year and Song of the Year, with ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy’), Tracy Chapman (Best New Artist), KT Oslin (Best Country Song, with ‘Hold Me’) and Ziggy Marly and the Melody Makers (Best Reggae Recording, with Conscious Party).

Later in 1989, Elaine Meitzler wrote, as part of a review of Neneh Cherry’s record ‘Buffalo Stance’, in the 25th (and final) issue of Bitch: The Women’s Rock Newsletter With Bite (p. 35):

“Looks like Rap is a genre that is here to stay…Some rap groups are funny, like Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince, or have a hardcore political stance, like Public Enemy. But Neneh is sassy, cool, and tough.”

Neneh Cherry has certainly been in the spotlight this past year, with the release of her first solo album in over sixteen years, Blank Project (which appeared in a number of Best of 2014 lists) and a string of performances and other projects.

As 2014 closed and 2015 opened, and with the 57th Grammy Awards upon us, NASTAIJ (Australia), KINNIE STARR (Canada) and BE STEADWELL (USA) talked hip-hop with FolkBlog.

Continue reading A Lot to Say – Into the World of Hip-Hop

Celtapalooza 2015

St. Patrick’s Day is coming early. I’ve taken Festival Christmas off the air and replaced it with 40 hours of the best Celtic music. Everything from Afro Celt Sound System to Zeptepi.

Listen here.

Festival Christmas is Back

Festival Christmas is tanned, rested and ready to meet your need for variety holiday folk, bluegrass, Celtic and other music. To listen, go to http://bit.ly/festxmas.

Josh Smith Kickstarter

I’ll get the disclaimer out of the way first: Josh Smith is my cousin. My dad’s sister is married to his dad’s brother.  He’s also a first-rate blues guitarist, having played professionally since age 13. Yes, age 13. After touring for many years, he moved to LA where he is a side man, doing studio work and also touring with major musicians, including Rafael Saadiq and Taylor Hicks. A couple of years ago, he was in the Grammys band for the awards ceremony. Josh has a new crowdsourcing campaign to raise money for a new CD release. If you like electric blues, please consider giving. It’s much more worthy of your support than potato salad.

A Moment of Awesome

A Moment of Awesome, from Jimmy Fallon


New Adds, Festival Radio 2/8/14

New additions to Festival Radio since 12/14/13, by album:

Artist Album
Alice Gerrard Bittersweet
Amy Dixon-Kolar Dancing Through The Storm
Annie Ford Band Annie Ford Band
Copper & Coal Copper & Coal
David Bromberg Only Slightly Mad
Deborah Henriksson The Heart’s Cry
Eric Brace and Karl Straub Hangtown Dancehall
Fox and the Bird Darkest Hours
Girls Guns and Glory Good Luck
Humming House Live at The Red Clay Theatre
Irene Kelley Pennsylvania Coal
James Curley There Used to be a Train
JD Messer and Sanctified Coal Miner’s Prayer
Laura Cantrell No Way There From Here
Lone Justice This Is Lone Justice: The Vaught Tapes, 1983
Mason Porter Home For The Harvest
Poor Angus Gathering
Roosevelt Dime Full Head of Steam
Rosanne Cash The River & The Thread
Sacred Shakers Sacred Shakers Live
Smithfield Fair Companions
Susan Cattaneo Haunted Heart
Suzy Bogguss Lucky
Tedeschi Trucks Band REVELATOR
The Abramson Singers Late Riser
The Henry Girls December Moon
The High Kings Friends For Lifie
The Oh Hellos Through the Deep, Dark Valley
The Railsplitters The Railsplitters
Tim Grimm The Turning Point
Up the Chain Seeds And Thorns
Will Kimbrough Sideshow Love
Wyatt Easterling Goodbye Hello

Pete Seeger Dies at 94

Pete Seeger believed in the power of music to change people, and acted accordingly by playing and writing music that created change, never wavering in his belief.  If you want more details about a life well-lived, here are some other obituaries :

New Adds, Festival Radio, December 14, 2013

Albums with tracks added to Festival Radio since 10/26/13.

Artist Album
The Stray Birds Echo Sessions
Brian Miller & Randy Gosa The Falling of the Pine
Catherine Maclellan Snowbird – The Songs of Gene Maclellan
Seasick Steve You Can’t Teach an Old Dog New Tricks
Paul Kelly Live, May 1992
Poor Old Shine Poor Old Shine
Stuart MacDonald Leave It There
The Kennedys Closer Than You Know
Vi Wickam Vi Wickam

Festival Christmas is On the Air

Festival Christmas is back on the air for your holiday enjoyment. All of the freeform goodness of Festival Radio in a sweet holiday package.

Obituary – Faith Petric (1915-2013)

FolkBlog contributor Sue Barrett looks back on the life of Faith Petric.

Faith Craig Petric was born in a log cabin in Idaho on 13 September 1915 and passed away in San Francisco, California, at midnight on Thursday 24 October 2013, aged 98.

As the night breeze swept through Australia’s Port Fairy Folk Festival on a Friday evening in early March 1998, American performer Marcy Marxer was huddled against the cold. Nearby, Cathy Fink was buzzing – she had already introduced folksinger Faith Petric to the Port Fairy crowd and was now listening to Katy Moffatt yodelling.

Among the songs sung by Cathy and Marcy that night on Stage 4 were ‘Shady Grove’, ‘Orange Cocoa Cake’ and ‘Blue Love’. While Faith had sung ‘Highway Hunter’, ‘As Long as the Grass Shall Grow’, ‘You Ain’t Done Nuthin’ If You Ain’t Been Called a Red’ and more.

While chatting with Marcy and Cathy, the talk turned to Faith Petric. And it was Marcy, if memory serves me right, who suggested that I interview Faith – “She won’t be around for ever.”


A few weeks later, I interviewed Faith Petric for the first time – at a little table, in an upstairs venue at Australia’s National Folk Festival in Canberra, with passers-by interrupting every so often to say hello to Faith.

And thus began a friendship that lasted more than 15 years.

Late last year, Faith wrote saying, “I’m back home in San Francisco and expect to stay here for a while. Have a wonderful 2013!”. And just a few weeks ago, I sent Faith a card for her 98th birthday.

Faith Craig Petric was an American folksinger, whose father was an itinerant school teacher/carpenter/farmer/Methodist minister.

After graduating from Whitman College (Walla Walla, Washington) in 1937, with radicalism planted deep, Faith worked at a Seattle bookstore, then had her heart captured by San Francisco (“I watched the 1938 Labor Day parade; tears in my eyes as the Longshoremen’s unit marched in silence…frighteningly powerful. A socialist world owned by idealistic labor was surely only a few years away.”).

Faith Petric brought her daughter up in San Francisco – as a single mother, without back up.

In the late 1950s, Faith became involved with the San Francisco Folk Music Club (which for more than 50 years has been meeting every other Friday at her home), then took to the road as a folksinger after retiring from her 9 to 5 job with the California State Department of Rehabilitation in 1970.

In addition to her involvement with the San Francisco Folk Music Club, Faith Petric was involved with many other organisations and causes, including the Freedom Song Network, People’s Music Network, Children’s Music Network, Raging Grannies, Industrial Workers of the World and American Federation of Musicians (being the oldest member of Local 1000 AFM, at the time of her death).

Faith wrote ‘The Folk Process’ column for Sing Out! magazine and had a vast repertoire that included songs by Utah Phillips, Malvina Reynolds, Jean Ritchie, Tom Hunter, Hazel Dickens, Biggs Tinker, Van Rozay, Carole Etzler and Lou and Peter Berryman.

Faith Petric was many things – politically engaged, thoughtful and caring, smart and knowledgeable. She loved a joke and could be quietly “outrageous” in delivering messages (who else could get away with singing, ‘The Priest Song’, in public). She had an affinity with nature and enjoyed the quirky things of life (like orphaned socks). Faith spoke lovingly of her daughter and her granddaughter. And so many people speak lovingly of Faith.

Over the past 15 years, Faith shared many thoughts…

Continue reading Obituary – Faith Petric (1915-2013)

Help Support this Broadcast, Try Live365 VIP for FREE!

Festival Christmas


GRAMMY Community Blogger logo

FolkBlog Archives