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Subject: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: popking on 08/01/07 at 4:46 pm

Does anyone think radio is gonna get run into the ground and just....die off eventually? I wouldn't be surprised if it does, and we're left with just AM talk, and music promotion takes on a new, more democratic realm somewhere else. Even satellite radio may not be safe.

There's really no reason for needing radio if you think about it, its totally bland and homogenized and basically a broken system at this point, as much as I long for its pre-1996 form. It hurts sales more than it helps by the repetition of too few songs, and too little diversity.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: MaxwellSmart on 08/01/07 at 7:28 pm

I've worked in community/university radio for 14 years.  We are the last bastion of "classic radio."  You know, radio in which there's a "DJ" in the booth spinning records.  Of course, it's mostly CD, but some of our DJs still spin vinyl, and you can call up and make a request or a long distance dedication!

If there is a college, university, community radio station in your area, do whatever you can to support it.  Keep radio as we known and love it alive!
8)

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: fusefan on 08/01/07 at 7:47 pm


I've worked in community/university radio for 14 years.  We are the last bastion of "classic radio."  You know, radio in which there's a "DJ" in the booth spinning records.  Of course, it's mostly CD, but some of our DJs still spin vinyl, and you can call up and make a request or a long distance dedication!

If there is a college, university, community radio station in your area, do whatever you can to support it.  Keep radio as we known and love it alive!
8)

Yep! where I live we got 89.7 The River and by golly it's probably the only good thing about FM radio here.  8)  But sometimes they start playing emo which i can't stand.  :P

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: MaxwellSmart on 08/01/07 at 8:02 pm


Yep! where I live we got 89.7 The River and by golly it's probably the only good thing about FM radio here.  8)  But sometimes they start playing emo which i can't stand.  :P

Bleccch!  Tell me about it!  Unfortunately a lot of college radio stations suffer from crappy programming.  On WMUA 91.1 FM I play John Cage, Iannis Xenakis, Milton Babbitt, Harry Partch, Luciano Berio, George Crumb, and dozens of other great contemporary composers NPR won't touch.  "Classical" music on NPR is just Muzak for snobs.  Beethoven isn't the problem, of course, the conductors and orchestras playing Beethoven like it was Easy Listening is the problem.  I can't bear to hear it!
::)

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: popking on 08/01/07 at 9:57 pm

on the topic, satellite radio is just a jukebox. Maybe if they get permission by the FCC to do local stations things could turn around, but it seems to be a long shot. Terrestrial is in dire straits as well, its basically ruined to the core, and exists largely as airwaves for advertising/ white noise. Radio is probably at the beginning of the end, which really sucks to anyone who loves music or culture.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: Marty McFly on 08/01/07 at 10:40 pm

^ Yeah, I'm quite old-school myself, so it's sad to see it go or at least gradually decline more and more to the point of really sucking, lol. Of course the actual music is the reason to tune in, but I think the DJs and representation of the local area gives it a much more human feeling.

Satellite might have better choice for actual music, but that's just like being stuck with nothing but your collection of CDR's or mixtapes.

I wonder if Clear Channel actually was the beginning of the end? Since less innovative or in general a variety of music began getting airplay c. 1997, that meant less interest in music as a whole. Even if it didn't really become noticeable until about 2002, when record stores started closing in large numbers, and downloads kinda overtook hard copies. Ever since then, while some good individual songs have come out, there's been very few "classic" albums or groundbreaking new bands.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: fusefan on 08/01/07 at 10:55 pm


^ Yeah, I'm quite old-school myself, so it's sad to see it go or at least gradually decline more and more to the point of really sucking, lol. Of course the actual music is the reason to tune in, but I think the DJs and representation of the local area gives it a much more human feeling.

Satellite might have better choice for actual music, but that's just like being stuck with nothing but your collection of CDR's or mixtapes.

I wonder if Clear Channel actually was the beginning of the end? Since less innovative or in general a variety of music began getting airplay c. 1997, that meant less interest in music as a whole. Even if it didn't really become noticeable until about 2002, when record stores started closing in large numbers, and downloads kinda overtook hard copies. Ever since then, while some good individual songs have come out, there's been very few "classic" albums or groundbreaking new bands.

The reason why i listen to the radio is just for the music. I agree satellite radio is like a jukebox/ipod but, i can't stand most local DJs that plug up their voices and tell lame jokes with the over use of sound effects and they can't be really edgy and real with themselves because of all the laws that the fcc or whatever puts on them.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: Marty McFly on 08/01/07 at 11:07 pm

^ Yeah, they certainly overdo it sometimes, especially in the morning, lol. I guess the absolute ideal would be an in-between. ;)

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: popking on 08/01/07 at 11:30 pm

I think Clear Channel was the beginning of the end, because radio just isn't a growth industry anymore and will never be. The best case scenario would be to remain static, or at least flatline which doesn't seem to be happening anytime soon. It will run itself into the ground and go bankrupt, or finally the shareholders will jump ship or some other bottom dollar executive will see the light. the same thing will probably happen to satellite if it doesn't reinvent itself to make up for terrestrial. Granted, consolidation had been happening long before 1996 but with the Telecom act it finally reached the tipping point.

Social networking perhaps will take radio's place, otherwise as far as I can see, the ball game's over.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: gumbypiz on 08/01/07 at 11:33 pm

I DESPISE Clear Channel. I agree that, for the most part, radio is a vast wasteland (hmm, didn't someone use those words about TV long ago? Look at where TV is now  :) )
Here in LA, its a workout going up and down the dial, trying not to hear that same played out American Idol pop/crap song on every (Clear Channel owned) station, four or five times an hour.

But as some have already mentioned, there still a few stations, independents, college and so forth that are still worth a listen.

Here in the LA area, we have KCRW 89.9 FM (Santa Monica College). The programing varies wildly and if you don't mind a bit of NPR news repeated in the morning, you get to listen to some very eclectic stuff (there is a morning show called Morning Becomes eclectic). Surprising, as being in LA, with so much crappy radio, and the phony LA scene, you wouldn't think we would have a station like KCRW. Check out the station on-line if you're not in the area, I swear you'll be glad you did.

So there is still some hope for original programming, like Maxwell Smart said, keep real radio alive, support your local college radio stations! 8)

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: popking on 08/01/07 at 11:45 pm

Clear channel actually sold its company and went private, it sold about 400 of its stations but its still way larger than it should be. Whoever buys those 400 or so stations will probably be just another clear channel type and won't make a difference either way.

I'd love to think things can get better for radio but they won't. Its wrecked beyond repair, support the locals of course but its futile I guess. The future of music is bright, but it may just be a future in which radio plays no part. Teenagers these days only casually interact with radio, they much prefer their iPods for music selection. (again, another jukebox)

Radio isn't even targeting the next generation, which is what they should be doing, had they had some brains or some keen ruthlessness for revenue. Instead their planning their own demise. Never the less social networking will take its place on the great equalizer of democracy, the internet.  And music diversity will explode like never before. "Hits" will unfortunately probably be smaller than they were in times past, and the whole glamour aspect of pop music will probably be extant. It's probably for the better though, we've witnessed the ultimately destructive dynamics of the top 10 single.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: fusefan on 08/01/07 at 11:56 pm

Just like i said in the other thread. Clear Channel = Viacom for radio

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: popking on 08/02/07 at 12:01 am


Just like i said in the other thread. Clear Channel = Viacom for radio


Frankly, its frightening how out of touch they are with what consumers want. Many companies still give consumers what they want, even if its expensive. Clear Channel is to radio what the middle east is to oil.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: fusefan on 08/02/07 at 12:04 am


Frankly, its frightening how out of touch they are with what consumers want. Many companies still give consumers what they want, even if its expensive. Clear Channel is to radio what the middle east is to oil.

Or what MTV now is for music.  ;D

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: popking on 08/02/07 at 12:05 am


Or what MTV now is for music.  ;D


Yes, agreed ;D

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: Marty McFly on 08/02/07 at 12:08 am

Yeah, alot of industries tend to be quite behind the times, or only stick with a winning formula until it's absolutely unprofitable. This was true when radio was resistant to pick up new wave bands, as well as artists and the public in general was skeptical about MTV in the early '80s (some point in 1979 though maybe late 1982 was kind of dead period for mainstream culture). But even that didn't last too long. Today it's much worse and more noticeable.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: popking on 08/02/07 at 12:12 am

Homogenization of the airwaves was definitely something consumers didn't want, and it shows in the sales now. Radio's a broken vehicle at a time when the industry needs a pick me up. Stupid move on their part.

I believe the music scene will all pick up, but its rediculous how they back themselves into corners like this.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: Brian06 on 08/02/07 at 12:15 am


Or what MTV now is for music.  ;D


Screw MTV, I Just saw Jim Jones in their "Top 10 Hottest MC's list", Nas wasn't even on the list, they know absolutely nothing about music anymore.  ::)

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: popking on 08/02/07 at 12:17 am

MTV is actually in bad shape, I read somewhere its ratings have flat lined. And TRL's ratings have gotten so bad their totally restructuring it and re-introducing it as YouRL, kind of like a nonsense YouTube for tv.

Should be a flop.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: Brian06 on 08/02/07 at 12:18 am


MTV is actually in bad shape, I read somewhere its ratings have flat lined.


Not a surprise with the quality of programming on there.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: popking on 08/02/07 at 12:19 am

Yeah, its utterly dreadful. Not even anything mildly interesting on anymore, just lots of gobbledy gook and so called "music."  ::)

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: tv on 08/02/07 at 12:33 am


Frankly, its frightening how out of touch they are with what consumers want. Many companies still give consumers what they want, even if its expensive. Clear Channel is to radio what the middle east is to oil.
The music industry has the same attitude as General Motors did in the 80's and 90's: whatever we put out there people will buy it well look what happened to General Motors  people got upset with General Motors in the 80's and 90's and than bought Honda's and Toyota's. GM finally leaned you put out a bad product out there people or a product people don;t want people aren't not gonna buy it.. The music industry is learning the same thing(or hopefully is) that General Motors learned in the 80's and 90's.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: danootaandme on 08/02/07 at 4:57 am

What is needed is some radio hackers.  They had some back in the 60's, broadcasting offshore without licenses, being chased around, playing music that the legal stations wouldn't play.  Right now, with everyone and his brother able to put their work on the internet it is too disparate.  There needs to be some cohesion,  it could happen.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: popking on 08/02/07 at 12:59 pm

On a realistic note, as much as it seems a likelihood, I don't know how on earth social networking could replace radio. Because in practicality it too is a niche offering like internet radio. It would be impossible to promote things. It will be internet radio and once the iphone price gets lower, people will buy more phones, perhaps of which may have radio streams on them. The mobile market has been around for a while but its still in its infancy, so to assume it hasn't caught on and never will is a bit rash. Once the iPhone allows over the air downloading, iTunes will become just another mobile market. Its pretty dillusional to think the iPhone and smartphones won't kill mp3 players. People may leave their iPods at home, but they can't live without their cellphones.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: Mushroom on 08/02/07 at 7:25 pm


I DESPISE Clear Channel. I agree that, for the most part, radio is a vast wasteland (hmm, didn't someone use those words about TV long ago? Look at where TV is now  :) )
Here in LA, its a workout going up and down the dial, trying not to hear that same played out American Idol pop/crap song on every (Clear Channel owned) station, four or five times an hour.

But as some have already mentioned, there still a few stations, independents, college and so forth that are still worth a listen.

Here in the LA area, we have KCRW 89.9 FM (Santa Monica College). The programing varies wildly and if you don't mind a bit of NPR news repeated in the morning, you get to listen to some very eclectic stuff (there is a morning show called Morning Becomes eclectic). Surprising, as being in LA, with so much crappy radio, and the phony LA scene, you wouldn't think we would have a station like KCRW. Check out the station on-line if you're not in the area, I swear you'll be glad you did.


Well, the situation with Clear Channel is really a catch-22.  A large number of stations that they own were actually bought up cheap as an alternative to going bankrupt.  For every 1 profitable station they own, they have had to buy 2-3 failures.  And in reality, it is not much different then it was 40 years ago.

For those of us that remember, ABC, NBC, and CBS also owned the radio waves at one time.  But over the years, they have all largely divested themselves of their radio stations because they were no longer profitable.  First came the shutting down of AM stations as music moved to FM.  Then came the closure of FM as music changed from Top 40 or Classical to Morning Zoo and highly specialized stations that play only to a small sect of listeners ("Classic Rap", "Emo", "Classic Country", etc).

And this does not even cover the large number of listeners that have moved to CD, and now MP3 based music.  And don't forget the ever-growing "Books On Tape" market.

Today, in radio a station must either find a market or die.  Instead of stations that play a mix of Top 40 and oldies, now they are getting more and more formulaic.  This is made even worse as music companies have become increasingly hesitant of releasing new and untested forms of music.

I know that when I lived in LA, I listened to many different stations.  Morning and Evening drive it was always KFI (AM Talk), I simply can't get enough of Bill Handel or John & Ken.  Evenings it was KNX (a CBS News station), for the Old Time Radio Hour.  If I was just driving around, it was normally K-Earth (oldies station).  And one "show" that I followed from one station to another was Marc Germain (Mr. KFI, Mr. KABC, now just "Mr. K" on KTLK).

And ironically, even living in Alabama, I still listen to Bill, J&K, and Mr. K.  I listen to Bill handel's syndicated show every Saturday at work, and often in the evenings listen to KFI or KTLK streaming on the Internet.  In fact, as I have been writing this I have been listening to Mr. K.

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: MaxwellSmart on 08/02/07 at 8:25 pm


The reason why i listen to the radio is just for the music. I agree satellite radio is like a jukebox/ipod but, i can't stand most local DJs that plug up their voices and tell lame jokes with the over use of sound effects and they can't be really edgy and real with themselves because of all the laws that the fcc or whatever puts on them.

I'm the opposite.  It's not about me; it's about the music.

First the presenters in commercial radio lost control of musical content.
Then radio stations themselves lost control over musical conent.  It is no predetermined and programmed.  Ever notice how they don't even tell you who the artist is and what the song is?  Ever notice how CDs by the Top 40 artists go platinum the day of their release?  That's because they ship in platinum quantities.  Corporate executives decide what music you shall here and what music you shall buy--if you get caught up in the commercial juggernaut.

"Payola," such a scandal in its day, but now it looks like a great system compared to what we've got now!  The band gives the DJ a twenty bag, the DJ spins their record!  I'd rather have corrupt DJs making the decisions than corrupt corporate executives!
::)

Subject: Re: Clear Channel era Radio

Written By: danootaandme on 08/03/07 at 5:33 am


I'm the opposite.  It's not about me; it's about the music.

First the presenters in commercial radio lost control of musical content.
Then radio stations themselves lost control over musical conent.  It is no predetermined and programmed.  Ever notice how they don't even tell you who the artist is and what the song is?  Ever notice how CDs by the Top 40 artists go platinum the day of their release?  That's because they ship in platinum quantities.  Corporate executives decide what music you shall here and what music you shall buy--if you get caught up in the commercial juggernaut.

"Payola," such a scandal in its day, but now it looks like a great system compared to what we've got now!  The band gives the DJ a twenty bag, the DJ spins their record!  I'd rather have corrupt DJs making the decisions than corrupt corporate executives!
::)


I don't know if you are old enough to remember when BCN was non-commercial.  I listened on the moment it started up, the first song was Cream, I think it was "I Feel Free", anyway, the DJs picked the content and they would play anything from Charlie Parker to the Fugs. 

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