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Dave Para

Dave Para

Host- Folk Routes

Dave Para is a co-host with his wife, Erika Gerety, of the "Folk Routes," show.

He spent more than 40 years playing and singing with his late wife, Cathy Barton. Traveling the U.S. and Western Europe, they specialized in music from the Ozark Mountains, Missouri and the Midwest. They produced 17 albums including three for Folk-Legacy Records, a label that inspired them from their beginning. In the Arkansas Ozarks they became friends with Jimmy Driftwood and the Rackensack Folklore Society and also with Grandpa and Romona Jones and learned much about Ozark traditions and early country music. At home they were members of the Missouri Folklore Society since its revival in the 1970s, and Dave still serves as treasurer. Dave moved to Columbia, Mo., from his native Chicago in 1973 just as the community radio station KOPN started, and he later hosted a folk show, "Across the Wide Missouri," spinning records for a few years before touring precluded a regular schedule. He has remained connected to the station during its 50 years. Dave is the artistic director of the Big Muddy Folk Festival that he, Cathy, and their late friend and mentor, Bob Dyer, the Bard of Boonville, started in 1992. After Cathy's passing in 2019 and the resulting fundamental life change, Dave found a dear and remarkable relationship with Erika here in Albuquerque, and that's a story of its own.

Dave Para and Erika Gerety host a Folk Routes Show that presents more traditional music with an interest in Old-Time Fiddle, Ozark, Cajun, Celtic, Quebecois, old Country/Cowboy, and Gospel. They also play some Bluegrass, Blues and various oddities in the folk genre. Dave, a student of folklore, is quick to add historical perspectives and
background. He also took classes at the Old Town School of Folk Music
in Chicago and has fond affection for the folk revival. Erika is director of the Albuquerque Folk Festival and has wide connections in the music scene in New Mexico.

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