John Laurenti and Steve Morse
May 25, 2007, 8:34 am
Filed under: Boston, media, Music, New Music, Podcasts, radio, Song of the Week, WBOS

Okay, if you live in Boston, you are lucky enough to listen to John Laurenti’s show every afternoon on WBOS, and even better, catch Sound Check on the weekends and John’s chats with Steve Morse, the Boston Globe’s resident music expert, on Thursday afternoons.

I am indebted to John and Steve for the inspiration of many of my selections for Song of the Week on this blog, and more importantly for the vast knowledge of the new music scene which they impart. This is great new music, with background and information that you’ll actually appreciate from the DJ’s…check out their show.

If you don’t live in Boston, you can catch WBOS streaming at WBOS.com or better yet the (somewhat consistently) podcasted episodes of John and Steve’s new music coverage WBOS Podcast

Song of the Week
March 23, 2007, 1:52 am
Filed under: Mika, Music, radio

I’m starting a song of the week posting…we’ll see if it lasts.

Week #1 song of the week is Mika’s Grace Kelly. This probably seems dumb to everyone in the UK, where the single had it’s debut back in January, has already hit #1 on some charts and is played seemingly hourly on the pop stations.

But in the US, Mika is just emerging in most markets, having been added to VH1’s videos just this week. He was also named one of 10 new artists to watch by Rolling stone this week. If you haven’t heard any of his stuff, he has the vocal range of Freddie Mercury, an acknowledged influence, and a voice which is very polished by classical vocal training. His other singles are not stellar, but Grace Kelly is very strong. http://www.mikasounds.com

Culture of Participation
September 26, 2006, 3:48 pm
Filed under: media, radio, TV

When does the culture of participation go too far?
We have all experienced participatory entertainment (American Idol, etc.) and participatory journalism (all the fine and not so fine blogs out there…), hey we even have particpatory heckling on such fine institutions as WEEI radio’s Whiner Line and its like, but does every supposed news program really need to have audience participation? If we are going to invite listeners to call in or send e-mail on almost every news program of note, how much news goes uncovered. This all started (my elders may correct me if I’m not going back far enough) with 60 Minutes, which in its earliest days began reading comments and questions from its viewers…. this stuff is not news people! Of course the institution should rightfully be credited to a much older media,…periodicals and newspapers where letters to the editor allow the ultimate form of audience participations…one which can also be ignored

I don’t want to spend 30 seconds much less the 5 minutes or more some “news” programs devote to listener/viewer participation. Mainstream media is increadingly incorporating viewer participation into its programs to emulate the qualities of blogs and other citizen media, but TV and Radio are simply not structured for it…you can’t escape when some idiot rants for 3 minutes about his own ignorance. The result is increasingly irritating mainstream news programming, instead of compelling content.

TV and radio producers – stick to your media’s strengths. Provide high quality journalism. Do your homework. Don’t invite every opionated windbag to fill programming for you with little or no editorial control. The beauty of blogs and especially the comments sections of great blogs is simple; the audience controls the flow. Viewer/listener participation in mainstream TV/Radio has the opposite effect, the listener is powerless…except to change the channel. Enough call-in segments already.