Thanksgiving, he'll play at the Ark, where he gets to do those same things and also sing before an audience he can actually see.
"What I love the most about folk music," Matt says, "is that it's constantly evolving from something older. You're always building on a tradition." That love of tradition and transformation has informed his work on both radio and stage. When WDET, longtime home of the Folks like Us show, in one of the more questionable moves a Detroit organization has made since the Tigers fired Ernie Harwell, let Watroba go last year, he didn't sulk or pout: he simply moved his encyclopedic knowledge of folk music and musicians, his not inconsiderable talents as an interviewer, and his comfortable, down-home speaking voice to WEMU. Detroit's loss, our gain.
His Thanksgiving shows have also evolved, from early solo performances to shared evenings with storytellers and some of Michigan's top musicians. This year's show, on Friday, November 25, will feature the Jukebox Folk Band: Bud Michael on bass, one-man band David Mosher on everything with strings, and Katie Geddes on vocals that blend so well with Matt's that they remind you of the best sibling acts in country music.