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Generic Confusion

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News? Check. Politics? Check. Music? Check. Random thoughts about life? Check. Readership? Ummm.... let me get back to you on that. Updated when I feel like I have something to say, and remember to post it.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

You Don't Know Jack

I was in Chicago last month, right around the time when an oldies station switched format to the broader format called "Jack." A local radio station changed from a current country format to the broader country format called "Hank," using the slogan "He plays anything country."

I applaud any radio station that plays a wider variety of songs. Broadcasting has become narrowcasting, and the playlists have been narrowed to a handful of songs that test highest with the audience. Billboard chart guru Fred Bronson has long bemoaned the loss of radio stations he remembered from his youth, that would play rock, R&B, and country... anything popular on the charts.

Eric Zorn in the Chicago Tribune: "Even great music--including Beatles songs...--cloys after a while.

I would love to have a radio station, just so I could stick the occasional obscure song I like into heavy rotation. Who knows? One of them might even catch on with the listening public!


At 11:09 AM, Blogger Joel said...

Our oldies station here in Nashville just recently switched to the "Jack" format, and it's . . . interesting. For one thing, the station doesn't seem to have DJs, which is both a blessing and a curse, I suppose. The voiceover that runs things now has a bit of a "smartass" persona that quickly gets annoying, but I do appreciate the wider variety of music the station plays now.

At 1:22 AM, Blogger Greg said...

I like a good morning show, but beyond that, I have little use for disc jockeys, especially when they don't talk about the songs or even give their names.

At 1:43 AM, Blogger Joel said...

Well, that's the thing about this voiceover DJ they use now. You never hear the name of the song or the artist mentioned. The station plays four or five songs in a row, cuts to a commercial or two, then comes back to the songs. It cuts out the completely inane chatter with which most DJs fill their airtime, but if you want to know what a particular song was so you can go download it on iTunes, you're SOL.

At 8:20 AM, Blogger Joel said...

There's a link on CNN.com today to a video about this new Jack format (I wish I could link to it, but it's a JS link). Very interesting stuff about how Jack is spreading across the nation.


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