I write about music on Public Radio and the internet

I write about music on Public Radio and the internet

I am a Public Radio and serious music fanatic, a WNYC zealot, and just a listener. I am not in any way connected with any organization. But, as a listener, I am PubRadio’s meat and potatoes.

I tried to do a blog in 2005 on the subject of music on PubRadio and the Internet. It never went anywhere, i did not know how to get it done right so that it would be seen. I hope that this format, this template, which is much better than what I saw in 2005 will be more successful.

All of the five posts from 2005 are available to me and I can post them here if there is any interest. They were essentially about the fact-certainly now a proven fact- that public radio stations presenting Classical music and Jazz needed to wake up to the fact of the internet. They were no longer appealing to only a local audience as with terrestrial radio. They were in a new global competition with their USA peers and services all over the globe, a competition for our ears and our member dollars.

The best early stream was at KUSC, Los Angeles, 96kbit mp3, and solid as a rock. Now the others with whom I am familiar, WNYC, New York City; WPRB, Princeton, New Jersey; WCPE, Winston-Salem, NC, have all caught up.

KUSC Classical Music Los Angeles

But, if you read Mike Janssen and Marty Ronish at insidethearts.com, you know that things are not good in PubRadioLand.And, if you read Greg Sandow, you know that things are not great in the live music world. The demographics see an aging graying and thus dying out audience. In New York, The “Wordless Music Project” is trying to bring young people into the concert hall by combining serious music with more youth oriented genres.

Scanning the Dial

So, the thing is now, stations need to distinguish themselves from the herd by what they program. WNYC’s fabulous wnyc2 plays “500 years of new music”, and “non-generic Classical music”. That all translates to mean lots of late twentieth century and current work plentifully mixed in with great music of the past centuries. This has carried over to Terrance McKnight’s and David Garland’s Evening Music at WNYC.

At WPRB, Marvin Rosen’s “Classical Discoveries” delves into the very old and the very new. His “Classical Discoveries Goes Avantgarde” does exactly what it says. Everything is very much today’s music. Marvin is especially  a master at the new musics of Eastern Europe and the Baltic States.

So, these stations get it. We can not be dismayed at the loss of KUSC’s Classical Public Radio Network, music from a hard drive, which one major critic called musical wallpaper.

So, this is what I am all about.

Additionally, now, the past being covered, on to some new things.

I would like to point to Hearts of Space where there is a fabulous new flash player and and incredible new web site crafted by Stephen Hill and his organization. Never heard of Hearts of Space? Embellish your life. Check it out. There are one hour themed programs of beautiful music, and there are albums to which you can listen.

WPRB has recently managed to get their mp3 stream into stereo. This is a real plus. Unfortunately, it is a .pls stream, so only accessible with Winamp. But the identical 128kbit stream is available for for Windows Media Player. They have a Real Player stream, I am sure it is fine, but I dropped Real when they dropped certain statistical measures in their player reporting: bit rate and stereo/mono.

Live365 is the home of some of the best niche streamers in the world. This is a subscription based service; but it is really cheap for all of the streams one could ever want.

At Live365, we find Innova (American Composers Forum, St Paul, MN with five or so streams devoted to New Music. Fantastic. But, we seem to be losing Kyle Gann’s PostClassic Radio
The Maestro was for me especially a champion of the music of Charlemagne Palestine. I finally found the Amazon has some of this composer’s work in mp3.

That is another subject: how do we buy music today? Do we buy it or get it from torrent downloads? The benchmark is being set at Amazon, mp3’s at good bit rates and very reasonable prices, especially for large compendiums. I bought the Who, “Thirty Years of Maximum R&B”, 95 tracks for about US$36.00. I wonder what it costs at iTunes, which I do not have.

Now, that is enough for a start. I will see what happens with this new attempt. If I find that it is read, I will be back, not too often, but as I see things happening.