'Secret Museum' Airs World Music Of Old

Internet listening room offers Greek nightclub music from the 1920s and other rarities.

"Secret Museum of the Air" is a weekly radio show for people who think the world-music category isn’t big enough.

Each Tuesday from 6 to 7 p.m., Pat Conte and the DJ known as Citizen Kafka offer their expansive take on the subject. Their show includes recordings that date back to the 1890s, though most of the material they air was recorded in the 1920s and ‘30s.

The pair co-host the program on two FM stations — WFMU in New Jersey, just outside of New York, and FWC in New York’s western Hudson Valley — and on the Internet (wfmu.org/ssaudionet.shtml).

Each program illuminates an instrument, musical style, geographical region, holiday or something even more abstract. The shows are assembled from the hosts’ private collections.

The show’s April schedule celebrates African music. Tuesday's program is devoted to guitar music, April 11 to the music of West Africa, April 18 to the music of southern Africa, and April 25 to the roots of Afropop. The May 2 show will feature 78 rpm records from the 1960s.

The show's greatest hits — including programs devoted to the clarinet, harvest songs and Greek nightclub music from the '20s and ‘30s — is available at a "listening room" on the Web (megasaver.com/sma/soundlinks.html).