Sound Sessions from Smithsonian Folkways on Radio Bristol

Radio Bristol has been adding new programs left and right this year, utilizing the wealth of great music and great musical knowledge to be found in northeast Tennessee and southwest Virginia. For the station’s latest program, however, they’ve called upon an institution just a little farther away – the archives of Smithsonian Folkways.

The show, which is known as Sound Sessions from Smithsonian Folkways, is a collaborative effort between host Sam Litzinger (a longtime broadcaster who also works with CBS News) and Folkways archivist Jeff Place to bring everything from old interviews and field recordings to commercially-released albums and chats with currently touring artists to the airwaves. Litzinger and Place describe the show as “an audio journey into the rich, eclectic, and sometimes eccentric Smithsonian Folkways archive.” As befitting its source, the show will focus on folk music from both the United States and around the world.

Radio Bristol broadcasts from the Birthplace of Country Music Museum in Bristol, Virginia, which is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. According to Radio Bristol producer Kris Truelsen, “As a Smithsonian affiliate, Radio Bristol is always searching for ways to celebrate our affiliation through programming. Sound Sessions from Smithsonian Folkways could not be a better fit for the station.”

Truelsen is excited about the new collaboration. “The program offers a unique perspective contextualizing the history, cultures, and identity that helped to shape American roots music,” he says. “We look forward to this great partnership with Smithsonian Folkways and seeing how it will grow in the coming years.”

Sound Sessions will air on Radio Bristol’s WBCM 100.1 FM channel, which can be heard live in the Bristol area as well as online at It will air on Wednesdays at 6:00 PM, with a repeat broadcast on Sundays at 4:00 PM.

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About the Author

John Curtis Goad

John Goad is a graduate of the East Tennessee State University Bluegrass, Old Time & Country Music program, with a Masters degree in both History and Appalachian Studies from ETSU.