Listeners complained over a May 8 NPR music review for the implications made specifically in this sentence “It’s easy to imagine that this music was made by lowlife Peruvian musicians in the ’60s, tipsy on chicha wine and surf guitar,” NPR ombudsman Edward Schumacher-Matos wrote. This is the review in question, “Chicha Libre: Sonic Predators Rock Peruvian Grooves,” on “Brooklyn band Chicha Libre” and its new album.
The wording also prompted a “protesting letter” from the general manager and a host of Chicago radio station WFMT, according to Schumacher-Matos. The letter called for an apology from NPR for the review’s “characterizing” Chicha Libre as “low-life” and “tipsy … on wine.”
The reporter in question, freelancer Banning Eyre, apologized for “a poor choice of words,” according to Schumacher-Matos, who explained it was an “attempt to be colorful.”