Listen Now!

Playing Now:

The Folk Music Hour

David Calder presents the music he loves in The Folk Music Hour, with the aim of rekindling listeners' interest in acoustic music in the Anglo-American tradition, including NZ folk song, and world folk music such as that heard at WOMAD in New Plymouth's beautiful Brookland's Park.

Airing time: 12pm Sunday, Replays 7:30pm Thursday

To support the show, please visit:

Almost all music has a folk origin: blues, jazz, rock and even so-called classical. As Big Bill Broonzy famously said - "all songs are folk songs; ain't never heard a horse sing!"

Arguably the first Kiwi to make a living with a mandolin, David spent some of his musical life playing bluegrass, but was performing in the folk boom as early as 1964.

He was playing in Europe and the UK in the 70s, dabbling in folk rock and pop in California in the 80s, and creating a country garden in the 90s and teaching children to read.

These days, kind of retired, he is free to pursue any of the musical paths he loves: song-writing, tuition, and performance with guitar, piano, banjo, mandolin, autoharp, dulcimer, even bass; playing jazz, folk, blues and originals. Or to just kick back and listen to Bach or Grappelli ...

A long-standing performer of NZ folk, Davey also maintains a love affair with US old-time music nurtured since Doc Watson's LPs first made it to these shores. A natural entertainer since his debut on radio aged six, David thinks radio is the perfect performance medium.

Click here to explore past episodes from 2020

Click here to explore past episodes from 2019 

Click here to explore past episodes from 2018

Click here to explore past episodes from 2017

Click here to explore past episodes from 2016

Click here to explore past episodes from 2015 

Click here to explore past episodes from 2014


NZ Radio Award Certificate


To download the latest episode: Click on the kiwifruit to go to The Folk Music Hour page on the site:   download this show here

Click on the title of an episode to listen


Each year we observe the US national holiday by playing some great African American folk songs

Duration: 57:13 | Date: 10 January, 2021

Sandy Denny

Alexandra Elene MacLean Denny was an English singer-songwriter who was lead singer of the British folk rock band Fairport Convention. She has been described as "the pre-eminent British folk rock singer".

Duration: 57:33 | Date: 3 January, 2021

Shona Laing

Our greatest female pop rock hitmaker has a strong voice, good fingerpicking and some genuine folk roots

Duration: 00:58:23 | Date: 20 December, 2020

Seasons Greetings

Our end-of-year show features Yuletide, Christmas and New Year’s Eve music, traditional and contemporary. We wish our listeners the happiest of holidays.

Duration: 00:50:34 | Date: 13 December, 2020

Aoife O'Donovan

The Irish-American songwriter and folk artist has an impressive catalogue, with lots of collaborations.

Duration: 00:57:54 | Date: 6 December, 2020

Sam Amidon

A folk artist with NuFolk arrangements, Sam hails from Vermont, and he’s breathing new life into the old songs.

Duration: 00:55:50 | Date: 29 November, 2020

Gillian Welch

With her partner David Rawlings, Gillian has built a repertoire that sits perfectly at the place where folk song meets country music.

Duration: 00:58:31 | Date: 22 November, 2020

Blind Folk

We listen to some influential musicians who have amazed us with their playing and singing despite their visual impairment.

Duration: 00:57:18 | Date: 15 November, 2020

Paul Metsers

An expat Kiwi has become one of the UK’s most loved songwriters.

Duration: 01:01:04 | Date: 8 November, 2020

Joni at 77

Around her 77th birthday, we trace Joni Mitchell’s artistic life, realising an hour can hardly hope to cover this musician’s brilliant work.

Duration: 00:59:41 | Date: 1 November, 2020

Rainbow Folk

We play the songs of artists who have blazed a trail for rainbow community rights just by being themselves.

Duration: 00:55:44 | Date: 25 October, 2020

Jon Hooker

The Christchurch guitarist Jon Hooker has a self-released solo album that makes some fingerpickin’ good listening.

Duration: 00:54:13 | Date: 18 October, 2020


The Irish group Dervish celebrate 30 years of music with a great collection of Irish folk songs

Duration: 00:58:23 | Date: 11 October, 2020