The Fans of Folk Radio WUMB Facebook site has a post about the music being played on the station now. It makes for a good read:

WUMB keeps its “on-air personalities” on a very tight leash. The music director and station manager select the artists and program the computer to spit out the songs. The “on-air personalities” are merely talking heads regurgitating the same pre-written script.

There is no value in this management model. The station, the artists and the listeners would be better off if there were no music director and each “on-air personality” were converted back into DJs and given the freedom to produce their own programs….

At 3:30pm this afternoon, WUMB Music Director John Laurenti stated: “That was ‘Covered’ from Mike and Ruthy’s debut album, ‘Million to One.’ They just popped onto my radar about a month ago.”

A month ago?  Where has he been hibernating for the past 9 years?

The Mammals have visited the WUMB studio!

The Mammals visiting the WUMB studio.

Photo source – http://www.wumb.org/flyouts/recentvisitors.php?visitorid=150 – note the “folk radio” logo on the bumper sticker.  Now it’s only a matter of time before this photo is scrubbed from the website, but not before the faux pas was uttered and the image captured.

Mr. Laurenti must know Mike and Ruthy are members of the Mammals, witness their current on-air music calendar listing.

Maybe the state should pay to send John to more conferences so he can become better acquainted with the musicians he plays. Better, maybe the state should withhold funding the MD position and direct station management to free the program hosts to produce their own shows.

The page also posted its list of clunkers from the week, along with some pithy commentary:

  • 9/27/10 7:55am Alive — Dala — Just plain bad pop. Again?
  • 9/27/10 8:10am Three Angels — Will Kimbrough — Overproduced AAA pop. Again?
  • 9/27/10 1:20pm Sugarcoating / “We did the boom sh-boom the doo ah ditty The mocha choca latte and the nitty gritty (We did the) … hoochy coo, lazy ballerina, baby — Martin Sexton — Just plain bad pop. Again?
  • 9/27/10 1:55pm Northern Lights — Dala — Breathy pop. That makes two Dala songs today. How about instead playing something from the Boston-area Northern Lights bluegrass band?
  • 9/27/10 2:30pm Trust Me I’m A Thief — Guggenheim Grotto — Just plain bad pop.
  • 9/27/10 2:55pm Robert Plant & Alison Krauss — Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On) — Crossover rock/Nashville pop. The two artists would do better to return to their own bands.
  • 9/27/10 2:50pm So Far Away — Carole King — 1970’s tin pan alley pop.
  • 9/27/10 4:34pm Contest Coming (Cripple Creek) — Michelle Shocked — Pop cover of an old-time standard. Is this the WUMB music director’s idea of old-time? Very scary. Do yourself a favor, turn off WUMB daytime M-F, listen to Sandy’s program Saturday nights. Better yet, let Sandy and/or Dave advise on old-time music. Even better, free the more knowledgeable daytime hosts (Dave and Dick) to choose their own music.
  • 9/28/10 10:40am Born Too Late — Steve Forbert — AAA pop rock. Sounds like 10,000 other pop Americana songs.
  • 9/28/10 10:45am Take Everything — Greg Laswell — AAA pop. Last played yesterday, and the weekday before, and the weekday before, and the weekday before…
  • 9/28/10 11:05am Barbies & Broncos — Lindsay Mac — Cutsie pop.
  • 9/28/10 11:25am Angel Dance — Robert Plant — Led pop. Horrible! It’s like Led Zeppelin went to a retirement home and built a recording studio.
  • 9/28/10 11:35am Fiddle Girl — Anthony DaCosta — Crash bang rock pop. Where’s the fiddle?
  • 9/28/10 9:30am Maybe — Ingrid Michaelson — UGH! pop.
  • 9/28/10 9:05am Just Breathe — R.E.M. — Pop rock.
  • 9/28/10 12:40pm Burden Of Tomorrow — The Tallest Man On Earth — Wanna be folk pop. What is WUMB’s obsession with this guy? Gushing praise. played every weekday over and over…
  • 9/28/10 3:00pm Little Sheeba ? — not listed — Crash bang pop rock.
  • 9/28/10 3:15pm Stoned Soul Picnic — Laura Nyro — Written to be a pop hit in the 60’s, this rock remake reminds us of its pop intentions. Laurenti’s all ga-ga over the fact that Nyro has been nominated for the rock and roll hall of fame.
  • 9/28/10 3:40pm Glow in the Dark Plastic Angel — The Neilds — Grating pop. Too bad the recording engineer did not use Auto-Tune to eliminate the voice track altogether.
  • 9/28/10 3:45pm Hope Tomorrow — The Weepies — Teenie bopper pop.
  • 9/29/10 9:45am Tom’s Diner — Suzanne Vega — Just plain bad pop. For some reason, this reminds me of the theme from “I dream of Jeannie”
  • 9/29/10 11:35am Got Your Heart — Anders Osborne — AAA pop rock. Steve Miller ripoff.
  • 9/29/10 1:00pm I Was Made For Sunny Days — The Weepies — Lite pop. Again? This was played yesterday.
  • 9/30/10 7:55am Northern Lights — Dala — Breathy pop. Why is WUMB playing Dala every day?
  • 9/30/10 8:00am Central Two-O-Nine — Robert Plant — Rock pop. Go back to Led Zeppelin.
  • 9/30/10 9:20am Call On Me — Anders Osborne — AAA pop rock. Why is WUMB playing Anders Osborne every day?
  • 9/30/10 10:45am Boom Sh-Boom — Martin Sexton — Sh-pop. Why is WUMB playing Martin Sexton every day?
  • 9/30/10 11:55am Troubles Will Be Gone — The Tallest Man On Earth — Pop so bad, it’s worthy of World Cafe. Why is WUMB playing The Tallest Man On Earth every day?
  • 9/30/10 12:40pm Lantern — Josh Ritter — AAA pop rock. Why is WUMB playing this song every day? Josh does many more great songs that are much less pop sounding.
  • 9/30/10 1:30pm Norwegian Wood — The Nudes — Beatlesque cover pop WUMB management is ga-ga for anything Beatles.
  • 9/30/10 3:30pm Turn To Stone — Jim Lauderdale — Irritating southern pop.
  • 9/30/10 3:35pm Why did you — Sass Jordan — Irritating southern pop.
  • 9/30/10 3:45pm Maybe You’re Right — The Rankins — Breathy pop.
  • 9/30/10 3:50pm The Words In Red — Peter Case — AAA pop rock.
  • 9/30/10 4:15pm Bonaparte’s Retreat — Hot Club Of Cowtown — Hokey pop. WUMB management would not know “Bonaparte’s Retreat” if it bit them in their collective Waterloo.
  • 9/30/10 4:20pm Take Everything — Greg Laswell — Crash bang pop rock. Again? This was played yesterday.
  • 9/30/10 8:00pm Meet Me In New Mexico — Anders Osborne — Just plain bad pop. Again?
  • 9/30/10 9:00pm Everyday — Vetiver — World Cafe pop. do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do ….
  • 9/30/10 7:50pm House Rent Party — Peter Case — AAA pop rock. Is that the second or third play today?
  • 9/30/10 9:10pm Sunshine Makes Me High — Guggenheim Grotto — Just plain bad pop. WUMB’s day would not be complete without playing Guggenheim Grotto.
  • 9/30/10 9:25pm Come in My Kitchen — The Kennedys — Flashy pop, Wonder if when Pete does tuning, is he holding the guitar behind his head?
  • 9/30/10 9:30pm King Of Spain — The Tallest Man On Earth — Just plain bad pop. Didn’t they just play this yesterday? And the day before, and the day before that? Give it a rest, play something, anything else!
  • 9/30/10 9:45pm I Was Made For Sunny Days — The Weepies — Cutsie pop. Did’t they just play this yesterday? And the day before, and the day before that? Give it a rest, play something, anything else!
  • 9/30/10 9:55pm Change Of Time — Josh Ritter — Overproduced AAA pop. Again?
  • 9/30/10 9:58pm Everybody Loves You — Milton — Overproduced AAA pop

2 Responses

  1. […] questions have been wonderfully addressed by at least two recent posts at this site. See WUMBier (here) and How Borg Are You (here). In those posts it is easy to see the influence of the Billboard […]

  2. That really sucks! I used to love WUMB and its wide variety of folk music, but now Pat’s turned the station’s DJs into robotic “on-air personalities.” I won’t pledge any money to that station until they let the people on air choose their own music again. Miss Montieth has sent real folk music lovers up the creek. These clunkers should be put into the graveyard! (By the way, I’ve had to change the email address, since the powers to be at work have blocked access to your site!)

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