Peter Thompson

Producer and Host, Bluegrass Signal

Peter Thompson's first radio-like experiences involved recording concerts (hand-held mic + cassette deck), making mix tapes for friends and attending/hosting listening parties with other enthusiasts.  These proclivities found a broadcast outlet at Vancouver Co-op Radio, where, starting in 1975, Peter not only produced a wide variety of programs but also served as Program Director and Music Director.  For many years, Peter also was a freelance producer for CBC Radio, and taught in a college media production program.  Following a move to the Bay Area, Peter hosted programs at KCSM and KPFA before launching Bluegrass Signal on KALW in October 1995.  Since 2004, the program has been syndicated on WAMU's Bluegrass Country.

Peter has also been a member of Redwood Bluegrass Associates' Board Of Directors since 1994, served on the Freight & Salvage's BOD for eight years, and currently is a volunteer for the California Bluegrass Association and an active member of the International Bluegrass Music Association.

He's married to Kathy Kallick, who also happens to be my favorite singer/songwriter/band leader/guitar player; neither of their daughters, sad to say, have shown much interest in music from the true vine.

Peter grew up in Michigan, quite a distance from those "deep rolling hills," but the little hairs on the back of his neck went straight up the first time he heard the Stanley Brothers sing, and not much has changed since then.

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4:15pm

Tue August 28, 2012
Bluegrass Signal 9/8

Hard Pressed (but we can find a way)

Originals from Kathy and band members Tom Bekeny and Greg Booth, plus fresh interpretations of songs learned from Bill Monroe, Vern & Ray, the Delmore Brothers, Rose Maddox & Mike Seeger, Fiddlin' Arthur Smith, and Kathy's mother.

This Saturday at the special time of 5:00 - 8:00 pm, it's the Bluegrass Signal Fall Membership Drive Special! Great music from great thank-you gifts -- including Rounder's "Foggy Mountain Special: A Bluegrass Tribute to Earl Scruggs," the Kathy Kallick Band's "Time," and Foghorn Stringband's "Outshine the Sun" -- plus your great support at 1-800-525-9917 or "Donate Now" at kalw.org. Thanks in advance!

4:08pm

Tue August 28, 2012
Bluegrass Signal 9/1

Old Time Music in Berkeley!

Jason & Pharis Romero are coming from Horsefly, BC to the BOTMC

Bluegrass Signal host Peter Thompson welcomes Berkeley Old Time Music Convention Director Suzy Thompson (no relation) to talk about the annual event and play music from some of the participants, including Pharis & Jason Romero, Riley Baugus, Rafe & Clelia Stefanini, Trevor & Travis Stuart, Thomas Maupin & Daniel Rothwell, and the Stairwell Sisters.  Broadcast Saturday 9/1 at 6:30pm.  Listen anytime through 9/8 via KALW's Local Music Player.


12:36pm

Sat August 11, 2012
Arts & Culture

Live Bluegrass from the '80s!

Good Ol' Persons in 1985 (photo: Irene Young) L->R: Bethany Raine, Paul Shelasky, Kathy Kallick, Sally Van Meter, John Reischman

On Saturday (Aug. 18th) from 6:30 - 8:00 pm, the celebration of live bluegrass recordings continues on "Bluegrass Signal." Featured are the Good Ol' Persons (pictured) live in Canada and the Netherlands and Hot Rize live in Winfield, Kansas. Both bands were grounded in traditional bluegrass, and both took the music to some new places.

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2:40pm

Sun July 22, 2012
Arts & Culture

Celebration of Live Bluegrass Continues

Old & In the Way (L->R): Jerry Garcia, David Grisman, Peter Rowan, Vassar Clements photo: Nobuharu Komoriya

Peter Thompson continues his "Bluegrass Signal" celebration of live bluegrass recordings continues with a few songs from the 1973 Old & In the Way shows that made them the most influential bluegrass band between the pioneers and Alison Krauss.  Also: one of those pioneers (the Stanley Brothers) plus the New Lost City Ramblers, Roscoe Holcomb, and Cousin Emmy - all from a 1966 tour of Germany.  Airs 8/28 at 6:30pm; listen antime through 8/4 via KALW's Local Music Player.

 

9:32pm

Thu July 19, 2012
BLUEGRASS SIGNAL 7/21

(Previously) Live Bluegrass!

A recent photo (by Mike Melnyk) of bluegrass pioneer Mac Martin

Host Peter Thompson continues his broadcast of highlights from live performances.  This week:  two fabulous bluegrass concerts in the '70s: Mac Martin & the Dixie Travelers live in Pittsburgh (at a club where they played every Saturday night for many years), and J.D. Crowe & the New South live in Japan.  Listen anytime until 7/28 via KALW's Local Music Player.

The details:

Mac Martin & the Dixie Travelers

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