Craig Faulkner

American Rhythm Host

Craig Faulkner was born in 1948 in San Francisco and lived in Santa Barbara for many years before moving to Southern Oregon in 1990. He designed and built custom homes by day and in the evenings taught swing dancing classes.

In 1996 a chance encounter with Colleen Pyke, a longtime on-air personality at JPR, got him invited to drop by the studios where he met John Baxter who was then Program Director. Their ensuing conversation about his swing dance classes and vintage music, coupled with John’s observation that he had “a good radio-voice” resulted in an audition tape, and American Rhythm – The Gourmet Oldies Show was born. It first aired on February 1, 1997 and has been heard every Saturday evening since. Drawn entirely from Craig’s own collection, the program is an eclectic and in-depth retrospective on the early, formative years of American popular music.

Guts and Grace

Apr 1, 2013
United States National Archives

Editor's Note:  April 2013 marked the 71st anniversary of the Bataan Death March. It ranks among the most significant atrocities in the recorded history of armed conflict and has become a widely memorialized event. Craig Faulkner, whom many readers will know as the host of JPR’s American Rhythm — The Gourmet Oldies Show, has agreed to share the story of his father’s journey of survival and renewal — from the Bataan Death March and the Hell Ships, through fear and hatred, to forgiveness and the dawn of illumined spiritual understanding.

The Ordeal