Monday, November 23, 2009

An open letter to WUMB - reinstate Jack Hardy to the play list

No true folk radio station would have a play list, rather it would trust its hosts to be knowledgeable of their genre and artists and allow them to produce their own shows. AAA / "music mix" WUMB (the "community" radio station of UMass, Boston), and whose Google search page makes this outrageous claim

WUMB Radio

The only all folk music radio station in the USA

... takes a different approach.

The letter under the === below was sent to its general manager and music director today, almost two years after a promise to investigate why a "playlist task force" had purged Jack Hardy (and as a consequence, due to its artist censorship policy, caused its events calendar listing for the 11/08 notloB Folk Concert production of the Folk Brothers concert announcement to be printed as "David Massengill and More" when in actuality submitted as "The Folk Brothers, Jack Hardy and David Massengill". If an answer is ever received it will be appended here.


I am sorry this lingering issue detracts from the celebration of your birthday, but WUMB's stupid and unresolved action has angered me for nearly two years. Perhaps the sharing of "adult beverages" in high camp next year will help.


With the reissue of Jack's first 10 albums and the 2009 release of "Rye Grass" I urge you, your music director and the other members of your "playlist task force" (ref our Winter 2008 telephone conversation when I discovered the WUMB calendar changed my submitted "The Folk Brothers (Jack Hardy and David Massengill" had been edited to "The Folk Brothers, featuring David Massengill) reconsider its decision to purge Jack from the WUMB play list. At that time you promised to look into the matter and correct the purge, but I never received a follow-up report of your findings nor confirmation that Jack had been be reinstated.

For staff members with a AAA rather than a folk background, I suggest they read:
Jack Hardy -

Fast Folk -

"Fast Folk: A Community of Singers & Songwriters" -

Perhaps this Boston Globe review will give you additional reason to reconsider:

"With the reissuing of Hardy's first 10 albums, the full range of his talents is showcased for the first time. [...] With his songs set firmly in the centuries-old tradition of Celtic balladry, Hardy shapes his metaphors in a vision that successfully blends history, mythology, romanticism, and politics."

- Boston Globe review of new boxed sets, The Collected Works of Jack Hardy

3/11/11 UPDATE: Up until the day of Jack's passing, no response was received.  WUMB's Jay Moburg further added insult to injury, read the announcement of Jack's passing and subsequent posts in the tread.

1 comment:

notloB said...

To date and for the record, Pat Monteith never followed through with her promise to determine why Jack had been dropped from the playlist.

Almost fell out of my chair when I heard the station play Jack's "I ought to know", 4/7/10, about 1:10pm.