1977 Majorie Guthrie and Ron Olesko at WFDU Studios
Woody Guthrie's Wardy Forty (About... click here)
This extraordinary book chronicles the period of Woody Guthrie's life spent at Greystone Hospital in New Jersey. This was a period of Woody's life that only his family and a few friends witnessed, but the story will be told through the photos of Phil Buehler who went to Greystone about 10 years ago and captured images of the abandoned portion of the hospital where Woody stayed. The haunting images are juxtaposed with Guthrie family photos that are both heart breaking and heart warming. They capture a Woody Guthrie that most of us never saw, a man who was struggling with a disease that was robbing him of his ability to function, yet he was still creating amazing works.
I had the honor of interviewing Woody's widow Marjorie Guthrie back in the mid 70's at WFDU. Phil used my interview along with a number of other interviews collected from friends and family of Guthrie. The photo above captures a moment that changed the direction of my life. After being inspired by Marjorie, my love of folk music and radio really grew, and I am still doing my radio show and working in the folk community because of Marjorie, and of course Woody. Ron Olesko
Bill Hahn, Richie Havens, Jerry Traecy
Sundays 3:00 to 6:00PM Eastern Time
Ron Olesko grew up during the Folk Revival of the 1960’s and some of his earliest memories include being captivated by songs such as "Sloop John B." and "There's A Hole In The Bucket" being performed on the Captain Kangaroo TV show. In 1975 he enrolled at Fairleigh Dickinson University and joined WFDU-FM on his first day as a freshman and has been with the station ever since. Ron started as a DJ playing alternative rock interspersed with folk music. In 1977 he presented a program with Marjorie Guthrie as his guest, the widow of one of Ron's musical heroes, Woody Guthrie. From that point on, folk music became the centerpiece of Ron's radio work.
In 1980, just after he graduated from FDU, Ron began the series “Traditions”, now WFDU-FM’s longest running program. Ron also appears on Sirius XM Satellite Radio's folk channel's The Village and was nominated in the Broadcaster Category for 2007 Folk Alliance Music & Business Awards. In addition, Ron is the President of the Hurdy Gurdy Folk Music Club in Fair Lawn, NJ and also writes for Sing Out! Magazine. When taking a break from folk music, Ron can either be found in Section 112 at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey on game day or sitting in his den watching his beloved New York Mets.
Bill Hahn has worked at WFDU since 1994 as the host of Traditions and Sunday Simcha. His Traditions show is a mix of folk music that is not only traditional but modern and meaningful, incorporating much thematic material. Sunday Simcha offers Jewish music and humor from the past and present, including material that goes beyond the “box” of traditional.
Bill emigrated from Austria in the late 1930s to New York. After his wife arranged for the Sloop Singers to perform at his birthday party, Bill was inspired to begin working in the music business and producing benefit concerts. A relationship with Ron Olesko (of WFDU) formed and Bill later came aboard the station. His music interests are varied, from Gilbert & Sullivan to folk to pop, but spare him opera and rap. Hobbies outside of radio include tennis and photography (when film was still used).
Through WFDU, Bill has had the pleasure of meeting: Ronnie Gilbert, Si Kahn, David Amram, Pete Seeger, Phil Patton, Mike Burstyn, Julie Gold, and many more that are too numerous to mention.
Radio, to Bill Hahn, has always been way ahead of TV since it is the theater of the mind. There are the class acts like Prairie Home Companion, the intelligent talk programs (NPR) and, of course, the eclectic sound of WFDU.