Best of Studs Terkel

Fridays at 11:00 pm
Studs Terkel

Enjoy these rebroadcasts of the late great oral historian Studs Terkel’s longstanding interview program on WFMT.

For 45 years (1952-1997), WFMT was home to Pulitzer Prize-winning author Studs Terkel, who operated from a tiny room overstuffed with papers, books, and an antique typewriter. Studs’s career – and everything cultural – unfolded before our eyes. Over the years, the guests on his daily radio show ranged from ordinary Chicagoans to international figures: political leaders, writers, performers, social activists, and labor organizers. Covering wide-ranging topics, Studs was remarkable in his depth of knowledge and in his ability to get others to open up and talk. Most of all, he modeled a quality that became his job title at WFMT: Free Spirit.

Learn more about the Studs Terkel Radio Archive by visiting its website.

James Baldwin (9/29/1962)

November 24, 2017

It was in the Fall of 1962 that James Baldwin, the American novelist, essayist, playwright and civil rights activist, spoke with Studs Terkel about life, literature, boxing, and the signs of the changing times.

Happy 60th Anniversary, Old Town School of Folk Music (c. 1997)

December 1, 2017

Sixty years ago today, Dawn Greening hosted an informal music lesson in her living room. The seeds of welcome, collaboration and learning sewn that evening grew into one of Chicago’s greatest homes for the musical arts: The Old Town School of Folk Music.  On the occasion of the Old Town School’s 40th anniversary, in 1997, Studs Terkel welcomed inaugural teacher, ...

Remembering Rita Jacobs (6/12/1990)

December 8, 2017

December 13 is WFMT’s 66th anniversary.  In 1951, a young couple named Rita and Bernie Jacobs bought a small radio station where they could share the classical and arts programming they loved.  Studs Terkel joined them within the year and stayed for almost half a century.  When Rita died, in 1990, Studs presented this hour of her favorite music, and ...

Ursula Oppens (1/9/1994)

December 15, 2017

This hour of music and conversation from past Studs Terkel programs features American pianist Ursula Oppens.  First heard on WFMT in December 1990, the show opens with Ms. Oppens performing a piece by Tobias Pickler, and also includes compositions by Beethoven and Ravel.

Christmas Memories (c. 1961)

December 22, 2017

Tonight on the BEST OF STUDS TERKEL we bring you an annual tradition and WFMT favorite. Here is the rebroadcast of Studs Terkel’s compendium of voices, rememberances and music on the theme of the Christmas season.

Presenting the Last Picture Program of Recorded Music (12/18/1997)

December 29, 2017

From 1952 to 1997, Studs Terkel frequently filled his daily radio programs with a wide and wonderful variety of music.  On these occations he would select a range of recordings through which he told a story or conveyed whatever thematic ideas he had in mind. Tonight we bring you the very last of those shows from his long career at ...