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Songs For A Sunny Morning In May

Larry Garde

I know we need rain here in western Montana; but I’m hoping it doesn’t rain this Thursday (May 6, 2021). You see, I’ve been asked to host Thursday Free Forms at 11 a.m., which is one of my favorites of the shows I get to do on MTPR. And I’ve got what I think is a great set of songs for a bright sunny morning in May.

I am thinking I’ll dedicate the show to some former MTPR hosts that set the tone for the program in our station’s earlier years. Long-time MTPR listeners will remember the late Den Morrison and John Meyers. Both were adept at mixing genres, and throwing in surprises with their song selections. In Den’s case it might be the forgotten show tune, while John might pepper a thematic show with a rare selection from a folk artist who recorded in the 1930s.

I also always marveled at the presentation styles of William Marcus and Gus Chambers as well. William would seamlessly weave in and out of old and new, folk, rock, and jazz, while maintaining a pretty onsistent mood. Gus, on the other hand, might mix things in a way that was so unusual, he’d be sure to get listeners’ attention. (No one ever fell asleep listening to Gus’ shows.) I believe he once played selections by George Jones, James Brown, Luciano Pavoratti, and Joan Baez all in the same half hour! And of course, my sister, Annie Garde has been a huge influence on the development of my musical tastes over the years. Some listeners who only know her as host of children’s programming may be surprised to learn that, in fact, over time she hosted a number of music programs - for adults - on our station (Friday Free Forms, Let the Good Times Roll, and going back, a show called Mosaics).

In any case, rain or shine (I’ve got my fingers crossed), I hope you’ll tune in to Free Forms Thursday, May 6, 2021 at 11 a.m. My bet is that if you do, you’ll be whistling or humming pleasant melodies for the rest of your day.

Thank you for your continued support of Montana Public Radio,

Larry Garde