WUMB May Program Guide

On the Town with Perry Persoff

This past month I was fortunate enough to enjoy a lot of live music.  Joan Osborne, the Boston Mardi Gras, our March WUMB member concert with Sarah Blacker–nice to see she made herself some new fans.  And that was just one weekend.  Treating yourself to a mid-week jam by local pickers at your nearby social establishment can buoy your spirits.  (Yes, even if that means being up a little late on a school night once in a while [guilty…]).  And when that in-person music hits you boy does it feel OK, thank you Bob Marley [see “Trenchtown Rock”]. 


I am still buzzing from the recent Dave & Phil Alvin concert in Harvard Square, mostly because of the music.  The performances, the playing, the songs selected.  It was a tremendous show.  No surprise since they were touring in support of their album of Big Bill Broonzy songs, they partook often from the Big Bill songbook.  But they didn’t just play the songs.  Acting as MC, Dave Alvin with his dry humor gave us insight into the songs…perspective on Big Bill Broonzy’s role in music as it developed in the 20th century.  Instead of the band simply launching into a song, for instance, Dave would talk about how Big Bill Broonzy wrote the first rockabilly song in 1929.  Deep music and information shared at the same time…hmm, reminds me of a radio station we both like.


Here’s what else was great about that night.  In line to get in, my buddy Keith and I were talking about the WUMB fundraiser.  A couple next to us from Chelsea chimed in.  “I gave to Albert for Highway 61 Revisited this morning,”.  I introduce myself.  His wife and I talk about a few songs.  Then he sincerely describes the impact of radio DJ’s over the years, who you can tell feel just as affected by and involved with the music as their listeners do.  Boston radio has a heritage with that sort of thing.

We go into the club.  My buddy Keith and I find a place to stand.  We’re next to a couple from Inman Square, Cambridge.  Keith is more gregarious than I am, and before long he and the couple are amiably chatting away.  Finally, they introduce themselves.  Before I can modestly say “hi, I’m Perry,” Keith—who should be my agent–says, “this is Perry Persoff from WUMB.”  The husband’s face lights up and he says, “Wow.  It’s so great to meet you in person.  I just donated to the station this morning!”  The four of us hung out during the show, traded concert stories, high-fived when the band played The Blasters’ Border Radio.  We felt like old friends bonding over the music.


So in addition to hearing a tremendous concert that night, I got an up close and personal reminder of how important to people this music we play at WUMB is.


Of course, I can meet an entire roomful of WUMB listeners multiple times throughout the year.  That would be at a WUMB member concert.  What a great place to experience those special “live music moments” with other people who feel as passionate about songs as you do.  Access to member concerts is one of the great perks of WUMB membership.


As a music fan, I must say THANK YOU for listening to WUMB—thank you for supporting WUMB radio during our recent fundraiser.  And even though I am shy when there isn’t a microphone in front of me, I hope to see you at our next WUMB member concert.  Feel free to say hello.  Oh, and keep your eye on wumb.org for when our next concert is.


–Perry Persoff.

To become a member of WUMB, please visit : http://www.wumb.org/home/index.php & click Donate Now.

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