Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Show #94 February 2, 2012

Tonight we rock for la bonita Margarita!

Margarita- Henry Essence Shake Some Action Vol 8
On The Radio- Cheap Trick Heaven Tonight
Girls Want Rock- Free Energy Love Sign
Showdown- Off Broadway Quick Turns 
Any Other Woman- Greg Kihn Greg Kihn Band "Best Of Beserkley" '75-'84
Lone- Swag Catchall
Doormat- Ben Vaughn Mood Swings
Suspicion- Scott Wilk + The Walls Scott Wilk + The Walls
^Radio Radio- Elvis Costello and The Attractions This Year's Model
Help Me Fall- The Wellingtons Keeping Up With The Wellingtons
iPod Girl- The Scruffs Conquest
Let's Go Away- Travoltas Endless Summer
Paper Dolls- The Nerves One Way Ticket 
Sooner or Later- Hot Knives Hot Knives
*Radio Heart- Willie Alexander and The Boom Boom Band Willie Alexander and The Boom Boom Band 
*Radio Heart- Crosby Loggins Time To Move
*Radio Heart- The Secrets Titan: It's All Pop!
*Radio Heart- The Futureheads This Is Not the World
*Turn On The Radio- Bay City Rollers The Definitive Collection 
*Turn The Radio On- Lisa Mychols Sweet Sinsations 
*Turn Off Your Radio- The Essentials Fast Music In A Slow Town E.P. 7"
*Turn Me On Your Radio- Hilly Michaels Calling All Girls 
Bottle Of Fur- Urge Overkill Saturation 
Go Go Go- The Innocents No Hit Wonders From Down-Under 
I Feel Alright- Cosmic Dropouts Sonic Circus 
>Life Is A Rock (But The Radio Rolled Me)- Reunion Super Hits of the '70s: Have a Nice Day
The Jet Set Junta- The Monochrome Set Eligible Bachelors
Dead End- Adam Schmitt World So Bright
Stop Thinking About Yourself- Seventeen A Flashing Blur Of Stripped Down Excitement 
Saint Jake- The Del-Lords Johnny Comes Marching Home 

^Power Pop Peak:  #29 UK Singles Chart 10/20/78

*SacroSet:  Turn On Radio Heart

>Power Pop Prototype:  #8 Billboard Hot 100 9/7/74 

I guess it's just human nature but when I tell people I work in radio, many say "I NEVER listen to the radio."  I find this pretty rude, the equivalent of them telling me "well, then your children will STARVE- bwah ha ha haaaa!"  It's also not true, because when pressed they'll usually admit to listening "but only in the car."  Yes ONLY in the car- as if this is an inconsequential amount of time and we aren't all spending more and more time behind the wheel.  When I was a kid, I'd leave the house about 9am on a summer day, swing by for a fluffernutter at lunch time, and not return until supper.  Apparently that would now be called "child neglect," but I have no complaints.  Childhood today is a long succession of car trips as parenthood has largely devolved into an unpaid chauffeur position, driving the kids to school, to sports, to the doctor, music lessons, etc.  That's a
lot of time in the car "never" listening to the radio.  Oh, you may ask, but what about all the choices available in the dash these days?  True, satellite radio offers hundreds of choices and will continue to do so right up until the day it is run out of business by
wi-fi enabled cars.  Then, with the Internet at your fingertips, you'll have thousands of choices!  Imagine thousands of options for the 20 minute round trip taking Billy to soccer!  I have no doubt that the tech savvy will be listening to Zef radio out of  Johannesburg or J-Pop broadcasts from Osaka but the rest of us?  I think radio is going to be around for a while.

Now I'll grant that there has been a considerable artistic decline in commercial radio since it was deregulated in 1996.  Sadly, I doubt my boyhood hero Duane Ingalls Glasscock, renegade "clone" of WBCN morning man Charles Laquidara, would get his own show on any station in America today  ("Hello Rangoooooon!"). Yet you have to laugh at those newspaper stories about "the death of radio;" a 17th century medium calling a 20th century medium dead!  Placed any classified newspaper ads lately?  Ha!  Compared to other deregulated industries, like oh say banking and the airlines, radio is holding up pretty well.  How many mergers has your bank been through since '09 and have you flown on an airline recently, say in the last 10 years?  I get how deregulation is supposed to work theoretically, but sweet mother of mercy it has caused a world of hurt in the U.S.  I know the free marketeers would call this "creative destruction" but that's little solace when it's your knees that are being destroyed on a jam packed "beverage service only" flight that's been sitting out on the tarmac for 90 freakin' minutes.

Anyway, I still listen to the radio- FM and AM both.  Truth be told, I always have a selection of CD's in the car as well but after a while, especially on long trips, I start feeling like I'm in a "closed loop" and on goes the radio.  When I'm listening to the radio, whether its for music or talk, I feel connected to both the people at the station and my fellow listeners- it's not a feeling I get from a CD or my iPhone set on shuffle.  Plus, even though I have about 6,000 songs on the phone, there are no real surprises like those you get listening to a music station when you never know what they'll play next.  Furthermore, ask people who suffered through Hurricane Sandy or the Nor'easter in February how important radio is in a tragedy.  No power, no landline or wireless phone service- for many radio is their only connection to the outside world.  I have to say it really makes me mad that the aforementioned "free market forces" have kept an FM receiver out of smartphones for so long.  From what I've read, many phones already have the chip, but the manufacturers won't activate it because there's no money in it for them.  You would have thought after Katrina that they would have worked this out.  The good news is that I just read today that Emmis Broadcasting has an agreement with Sprint for FM radio in Android and Windows phones so hopefully we've turned a corner on what is an obvious no-brainer. 

My son rarely listens to the radio, but I'm happy to see my daughter Nica embrace the medium.  She fires through her four pre-set stations, lighting up when she finds her favorite hit song of the moment, singing at the top of her lungs.  That's one of the other things radio provides:  cultural consensus.  You can't really call a song a "hit" until you hear it all over the radio.  The Internet gives each of us the power to be our own "cultural curators" but as my ten year old self, alone in a bedroom full of Kiss posters and albums could tell you- it's much more fun when we share our passions.  That's not just what social media is about it's what all media throughout history is about- from cave paintings to Twitter, and that of course includes ALL KINDSA GIRLS!

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