Bill Paul’s First Tuesday of Every Month: Campus Radio Helps Keep Old Farts Young
By Bill Paul
“On Your Radio”
Question: By a show of hands, how many of you have asked your kids to turn down the music simply because you didn’t want to hear it?
Now that we have been honest let’s all take our hands down for fear of the person at the next desk thinking we are crazy.
Don’t feel bad, it’s not your fault, I understand…it’s what your parents told you too. It’s the same request made from generation after generation of parents to their kids as not much changes through the years. Cab Calloway, Elvis Presley, The Rolling Stones are just three examples of artists who have had a hand in furrowing parents brows and causing excessive hand wringing. Parents know and love ‘their’ music and the kids are employing ‘their’ music to help them in figuring it all out and love theirs with no less passion.
So how can we stop from repeating the patterns, passing them on and generally speaking becoming old farts before our time?
One answer is campus radio.
Heavy rotation play lists need not apply. Music which panders to the widest swath of listeners is not-so-kindly shown the door, perhaps even with a not-so-quiet ‘fuck you’. These are the places where leading edge music, thought-provoking discussions and unvarnished quality reside.
Programmes underpinned by counter pop-culture perspectives, inclusiveness and unfettered thinking abound. Although an article in the 12/09/10 issue of Rolling Stone talks about the death of radio at the hands of file sharing and portable listening devices, I am not sure I agree as a quick spin of the dial tells me campus radio programming is as abundant, accessible and vibrant as ever. Examples to give a listen to are:
McMaster’s CFMU 93.3 Lullabies in Razorland, University of Toronto’s CIUT 89.5 Raw Sugar Radio and University of Victoria’s CFUV 101.9 New Era Radio. Give them a listen and, if you are so inclined, give them your support too!
Feel free to comment here by suggesting radio programmes you listen to which avoid the mundane and homogenized offerings of mainstream radio.
As a closing thought, the next time you are thinking about telling the kids to turn it down, pause, check yourself, and ask them what song it is and who it’s by. Then ask them to turn it…up!
Here are two ‘radio’ songs for you to listen to at volume. One newer, one not so new.
Elvis Costello, Radio Radio, 1978
TV on the Radio, Wolf Like Me, 2006