Monday, June 06, 2005

Commercial radio is now officially dead

Growing up in northern New Jersey, I listened to the New York radio stations including the legendary rock station WNEW and the oldies station WCBS. WNEW flipped formats a couple years back and now WCBS has succumbed to market pressures and changed to an “Ipod on shuffle” format.

This past Friday afternoon, WCBS-FM 101.1 played their last song – “Summer Wind” by Frank Sinatra – and, without warning to their baby boomer audience, launched into “Fight for your Right (to Party)” by the Beastie Boys.

On Blogcritics, Michelle Catalano has an “obituary for a radio station.” (BTW, here’s my old review of “FM: The Rise and Fall of Rock Radio”). Viacom’s Les Moonves was taken aback by the response to the change: “God, it seemed like we had shot somebody when we changed the WCBS-FM format.”

Satellite radio, my cousins. That’s the way to go.

1 comment:

Mr. Faust said...

Oddly enough, while I thought I'd love satellite radio, I got bored with it after about a week when I got to demo it. I found lots of great channels that played stuff I like, but I was still missing things.

Even on satellite I wasn't getting anything by folks like BeBop Deluxe, Brian Protheroe, Camel, Caravan, Cocteau Twins, Cowboys International, Jandek, Kevin Ayers, Mike Oldfield, Propaganda, Spoons (not Spoon), Stan Ridgway, and the Weimarband. But there is one place I can get all of these acts.

Outside of talk (and our morning wakeup station that overplays Smashmouth), I don't listen to music radio anymore. I've been spoiled by iTunes, and now, the iPod Shuffle.