Uncle Bob's Radio Hour

Uncle Bob

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Hi, boys and girls. It's time again for Uncle Bob's Radio Hour! I think the last one of these was in 2001. At least, I know I did one in 2001. Maybe there was one after that. Beats me.

I say 'boys and girls' but I realize you're all adults now. The first UBRH was nearly 30 years ago, and some of you hadn't been born yet. I recorded that one in my apartment in Phoenix with two turntables, a tape recorder, and LP records spread all over the floor. I liked that format for recording these, because I could segway from one piece to another and talk over the beginning of the piece then bring the volume up when I stopped gabbing. When I went to CD I wanted the pieces to be separate tracks, so I had to have descrete beginnings and endings. (Actually, I didn't need to do that, but I didn't know any better at the time. I've learned much since.)

But technology keeps evolving, and not only do you probably not own a cassette tape recorder; you might not even have a CD player any longer. You may just have all of your music on your smart phone. (I'm not going to say "iPhone" because I'm not an iGuy.) So this edition of the Radio Hour is online. You can stream the music or download it and load it onto your personal music listening device (PMLD), whether i or a.

Every edition of the Radio Hour has had a theme. The first one, I believe was just music that I really liked and wanted to share, but one year the theme was the elements of music. Another year it was love songs. This year the theme is: the music that I play. That's right, boys and girls, this year you'll hear me playing recorders.

In most of the recorder groups I've played with on a regular basis, I've been one of the stronger players. A year and a half ago I assembled a quartet where all three of the other players are better musicians than I am. Fran studied flute at the Manhattan School of Music. Sharen is a retired music teacher whose primary instrument is the French horn. Nick plays viola in a local orchestra but has a degree in early music. I'm always surprised when they all want to come back for more.

We are the Overmountain Recorder Consort. The name comes originally from the "Overmountain Men", the men from this region who fought in the Revolutionary War. But my good friend and long-time music partner, Ellen Moore, when she founded the first chapter of the American Recorder Society in western North Carolina, named it the Overmountain Recorder Society. So the name really comes from that.

We play primarily renaissance music, though we drift back into the medieval era and forward to the baroque on occasion. Recently we performed our first real concert. It was at the campus cafe at Warren Wilson College (where I teach). We played all music from Elizabethan England, and after every few pieces an English professor read a Shakespearean sonnet. The audience was small but appreciative. The following week we met at the Warren Wilson chapel, which has beautiful acoustics, and recorded all of the music from the concert. And that is the music for this edition of Uncle Bob's Radio Hour.

Please click here to go to the music.