Washington's Longest-running Radio Show devoted to Folk Music

Welcome to the Mary Cliff/Traditions web site.

Traditions is currently OFF THE AIR. Mary Cliff was riffed and will pursue further broadcast radio opportunities.

Mary Cliff is a life-long fan of music and broadcast radio. In the "folk scare" of the early '60s, she sang in “hootenannies” and worked at DC’s legendary Cellar Door nightclub. Falling into radio in 1966 as a typist, then programmer with radio host Dick Cerri, she’s been on air since 1968, hosting (what we now call) progressive rock on WAVA, on WHFS and on the new WETA in 1970. From 1972 to 2007, as a WETA staffer, she produced and presented classical music, news, public affairs, interviews and folk – honing skills in writing, engineering, editing and line producing local and nationally released programs

Mary was assigned WETA’s folk music programming in March 1973. The Saturday-night show was known for its breadth and variety of material and its strong emphasis on artists and performances in the greater Washington area. Traditions moved to WAMU in February 2007, with Saturday afternoon hours added on WAMU’s BluegrassCountry in 2008. The show was reduced to Saturday nights on BluegrassCountry in fall of 2013 and eliminated in February 2015.

The main purpose of this site is to allow Traditions listeners to access the Who's Where lists of folk performances in the greater Washington, DC listening area and nearby (plus occasional listings of major events elsewhere). Mary compiles these lists from many sources. You can download the latest list in MS Word format and peruse it, print it or search for whatever interests you.

You'll also find Playlists of past programs.

The News Items page is where Mary Cliff posts notes, updates, show previews, obituaries, announcements, etc, about/by/for/within/of-interest-to the greater Washington DC-area folk community. Notes are likely to appear on an unscheduled, even whimsical basis. Feel free to contact Mary with suggestions; she will take them into account, but gives no promises about what she'll actually post.

For questions about the program, use the "Contact Mary Cliff" button above.