Episode 21

Published on:

27th Sep 2022

Matt Smith (Guardians and Curators)

Join us for a story of survival and guarding a cultural treasure in the face of terrible odds. Matt Smith is the managing director of Passim, the legendary folk club in Harvard Square, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The room saved my life more than once in the late 1990s and early 2000s. And then, in 2020, Matt faced an incredible dilemma — how to keep the 60-plus-year-old venue alive during the lockdown of quarantine. He's on the pod, taking us through those months and moves, steps and challenges, and ultimately triumphs. We also talk about the remarkable changes folk music — and what we call folk music — has undergone since those days I worked (and played) in the room.

Clips in this episode:

  1. In My Head (James O'Brien, 'A Bothersome Injuries Forty, Vol. 7' - 2018)
  2. Kris Delmhorst, 'Emergency Club Passim Social Distancing Hour' - 2020
  3. Matt Smith, 'Make Us A Video for Keep Your Distance Fest' - 2020
  4. Passim Streams: The Bigfoot Research Organization - 2020
  5. Passim Streams: Melissa Ferrick - 2020
  6. Passim Streams: Virtual Open Mic 9/22 - 2020
  7. Alice's Champagne Palace (Ellis Paul, Live - 2014)
  8. I Will Wait (Mumford & Sons, 'Babel' - 2012)
  9. Once There Was No Sun (Jake Blount, 'The New Faith' - 2022)
  10. Chase the Buffalo (Pierce Pettis, 'Christine Lavin Presents - Follow That Road' - 1993)
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About the Podcast

All Your Days
A podcast about creativity, art, work, crisis, and persistence.
'All Your Days' is a weekly podcast and newsletter featuring conversations, essays, reviews and roundups with a focus on creativity, art, work, crisis, persistence, and how creative lives transform over time.

Host: James O'Brien

About your host

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James O'Brien

James O’Brien is a studio recording artist who toured the U.S. and the U.K. from 1998–2004 playing politically aware rock and roll, sometimes solo and sometimes with a band. In 2017, after a 13-year hiatus, he began to release new material again, and in 2022 he became the host of 'All Your Days — The Podcast'.