Don't want to wait until bedtime (UK bedtime that is) to drift off to Sailing By (one of Jarvis Cocker's Desert Island Discs)? Well thanks to permanent bedtime you can listen to the BBC shipping forecast all day. Oh? What's that? It's no use because it's from months ago? Okay, here's the Met Office current data, and the listen again page on the beeb. Or test yourself: can you name all the weather areas?
"This Friday, June 12, TV stations nationwide will cease broadcasting analog signals and switch to digital-only broadcasts. That’s fine with me. I have a digital television, and I have cable anyway, so it won’t affect me. At least that’s what I thought. Only recently did I realize that one of my favorite ways to enjoy television will go away. Starting Friday, I can no longer get TV on the radio."
The English town of Doncaster has a new mayor. English Democrat Peter Davies was elected on the 8th of June 2009. His first engagement in his new role was an interview with the local BBC Radio station. Listen here (MP3 link) with a transcript here.
Adventures in Odyssey is a twenty-year-old children's radio series out of Focus on the Family "The series centers on the fictional town of Odyssey, and in particular, an ice cream emporium named 'Whit's End', and its proprietor, John Avery Whittaker." [more inside]
The FCC investigated a pirate radio station in Boulder, Colorado earlier this month and left a copy of their official inspection policy asserting that they have the authority to perform warrantless searches of private property if there is any FCC-licensed equipment on the property, including cordless phones, cell phones, wireless routers, intercom systems, and baby monitors. [more inside]
In last night's Sony Radio Awards - the UK's radio equivalent of the Oscars - Electric Radio Brixton won four prizes, including 2 gold awards. The kicker? It is broadcast for and by inmates in Brixton Prison 24 hours a day, part of an ambitious project by the Prison Radio Association. Some background here. [more inside]
War of the Roses These are trashy, but fun, 3-8 minute radio segments in which suspected cheaters are tricked into revealing their dirty sinful business over the phone. Typically, the DJ posing as a local flower shop tells a suspect boyfriend he has won a free bouquet of roses; will he send the roses to his girlfriend or to the dreaded Other Woman? The girlfriend waits in silence to ambush him if he gives the wrong answer. Some are sad. Some are infuriating. Most, I'm ashamed to say, are pretty funny.
On March 18, 39 licensed amateur radio operators were apprehended throughout Brazil for clandestine activities of telecommunication. This followed six months of investigations from local officials who received information from the US Department of Defense in regards to unauthorized use of Fleet Satellite Communications System. These geosynchronous satellites, also known as FLTSAT, were used by the U.S. Navy for UHF radio communications between ships, submarines, airplanes and ground stations. These satellites are simple repeaters with no authentication or control over what they retransmit. But the illicit satellite use was not limited to those experimenting with radio systems. Truck drivers love the birds because they provide better range and sound than ham radios. Rogue loggers in the Amazon use the satellites to transmit coded warnings when authorities threaten to close in. Drug dealers and organized criminal factions use them to coordinate operations. [more inside]
Oregon! Oregon! A Centennial Fable in Three Acts is a musical comedy by famed radio comedian and Looney Tunes voice actor Stan Freberg that was commissioned in 1959 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Oregon statehood. This year, on the 150th anniversary, Stan Freberg and Pink Martini will revive the musical with a new 4th act written by Freberg (check out the complete Pink Martini concert on the page). For more Freberg goodness check out these 15 episodes of his radio show and this 1999 interview which includes some of his classic sketches (sketches in RealAudio format).
Construction of Radio Equipment in a Japanese POW Camp: A tale of human ingenuity.
For the fourteenth year, Yo La Tengo will murder the classics tonight. (Previously: 2002 2006 2007 2008) [more inside]
"We are urging music stations all over the U.S. to send us photos of their gold and platinum records." Hearings are starting on the RIAA's new pet bill. They're feeling the pinch and would like a few of their gold records back. [more inside]
the doyouinverts sings songs about old friends who don't play videogames anymore, Edge Magazine's scoring system and a love song to an imported Japanese videogame. They are a regular feature on British videogame radio show/podcast One Life Left.
Paul Harvey 1918 - 2009. At 7:30 PM the Paul Harvey site looked like this. Now if looks like this. (via) [more inside]
Feel like listening to a concert tonight? Something classical? Or maybe folk is a bit more your style? World? Jazz? Nearly every day, two or three more live concert recordings are added to CBC Radio2's 'Concerts on Demand' library, with nearly 900 concerts now in the list. Each concert is given just as presented live, and you can either stream the whole thing, or choose track by track. Timings are given for all the music, and photo galleries and full descriptions and credits round it all off. All in all, it's a fabulous presentation, and there is more music here than you will ever be able to keep up with!
A tale of two countries Some time ago, the french & German tv channel Arte had created an internet extension devoted to audio only, Arteradio. This website contains hours of audio creations. This is the place where you can listen to The first radio drama /la première fiction radio /in two languages and one version /en deux langues et une seule version /a BBC-ARTE Radio coproduction /enregistrée à Paris et London /recorded on location /diffusée en hertzien /broadcasted on BBC Radio 4 on February, 4th, 2009 /online on arteradio.com. You can also listen to McKenzie Wark, or to the moment of silence created on September the eleventh 2002, to Steve, to English pupils in Paris, to Susan George, to Dean Hurley commenting his work, and then dive into the complete unknown, and pure French sounds, like these testimonies about masturbation, or about la chanson, like a Paris postcard, or even a street snapshot.
Progressive rock was kicked off American radio circa 1985 (not so much fired as pressured into resigning); today, there's virtually nothing on mainstream radio in an odd meter (5/4, 7/8, etc.). At Odd Time Obsessed, though, everything is. [more inside]
Radio Lajee is one lone Aussie woman in the Aida refugee camp in the West Bank, teaching young Palestinians how to podcast and share their stories with the world. The project's been going for a little over six weeks, but already there's four episode up on the site; all of them in English. These include a story about the beginning of the Camp, a day in the life of a 14 year old Palestinian girl, a celebration of the traditional dance style of Dabke and a cooking segment by future celebrity chef, Amal Abu Srour.
Public Radio Podcasts : NPR is a treasure trove of great audio content but most of it is not accessible via a podcast feed. This site uses the NPR API to construct proper podcast feeds for their shows that don't current have feeds (e.g. Morning Edition, All Things Considered) as well as per reporter and topic based feeds. Enjoy! [via mefi projects]
The poet is a radio. The poet is a liar. The poet is a counterpunching radio. Jack Spicer was a poet, linguist, & early gay rights activist. For a long time, his poetry was out of print and difficult to find, but now Wesleyan University Press has (finally!) published his collected poems. The book takes its title from Spicer’s last words: My Vocabulary Did This to Me. [more inside]
Produced and recorded in the studios of Kootenay Co-op Radio in Nelson, British Columbia, Deconstructing Dinner has been designed to dispense and discuss current food issues. This weekly radio show hosted by Jon Steinman features a wide range of topics revolving around food security. [more inside]
The Tone Generation is a radio series by Ian Helliwell 'looking at different themes or composers in the era of analogue tape and early synthesizer technology'. The original globe-trotting series: Great Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Holland, Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, USA, Canada, Rest of World. Bonus programmes: Expo 58, The RCA Synthesizer. All links are to MP3 files, except the first one. Alternatively, you can slurp down the lot in one go by subscribing to the podcast feed.
"Ham Radio is a life long learning experience. You never stop learning." Don, W3RDF, is a CW enthusiast who shares with us his love of a hobby that has been a source of many friends from around the globe. With Solar Cycle 24 just beginning, the Ham Bands have been heating up with activity. Perhaps you might want to listen to what they are saying.
Theatre of the New Ear. Two radio plays: one by Charlie Kaufman, the other by the Coen Brothers, recorded live and starring Steve Buscemi, John Goodman, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Meryl Streep. [more inside]
"Wally Ballou here, reporting for the Matinob with Ray and Bob from the World Wide Internets..." Bob Elliott and Ray Goulding are better known as Bob and Ray. Spending over four decades on the radio, television, print, and Broadway, beginning in Boston in 1946, they pioneered absurdist, satirical, dry, improvisational sketch comedy, influencing a legion of future comics (and others). The duo was inducted into the NAB Hall of Fame in 1984. They last appeared on the radio in NPR's "The Bob and Ray Public Radio Show" from 1982-1987. [more inside]
"I was distraught. I felt I was actively participating in something so inconsistent with reality that even most conservative talk radio devotees would see this. But in a way, it was merely a more obvious example of how talk radio portrayed reality selectively." A former producer reveals the secrets of talk radio. via
TV Offal's songs and the US radio jingles which inspired them. "It's nice in Detroit." "It's nice being Esther." TV critic Victor Lewis-Smith's late night comedy show was short lived but well remembered by those of us who saw it on Channel 4in the UK (cf, Google Video and YouTube).
I first heard of a 'Paraset' when I saw a message on the QRP-L reflector announcing an upcoming 'June 6th Paraset D-Day' activity. A search for more information soon revealed that the Paraset was a small vacuum-tube transmitter-receiver unit built during WWII in the UK at the Whaddon Hall headquarters of the Secret Intelligence Service Communications Unit. Known officially as the 'Whaddon Mark VII', the units were either air-dropped by parachute or carried, by the jumpers themselves, into many of the occupied countries of western Europe. . .
Seventy years ago today was the original broadcast of "The War of the Worlds". Listen to it, uninterrupted, here. The program reportedly caused a mass panic across much of the Northeast. [more inside]
I Love Lucy Pilot (1951). Originally unaired. More about this. Of related interest, the audition for the I Love Lucy Radio Show.
The U.S. Constitution protects your right to bear arms. And it supposedly protects your right to mock nearly-bare bears. Speech is definitely subject to supply and demand. So why does the FCC feel the need to regulate swearing on the airwaves? Steven Pinker complains. [via ALDaily]
Voices and Music of World War I and Voices of World War II: Experiences From the Front and at Home both feature spoken word, sheet music and songs galore (all audio RealPlayer). The Great War site has plenty of stuff, but the core is the collection of songs, anti-war, patriotic, France-themed, Kaiser-knocking and so forth. The WWII site also has a whole bunch of music, demonstrating the changing mood of the US, from conflicted feelings about the start of the war to conflicted feelings about the atomic bomb. Among the artists are Nat King Cole, Leadbelly, Benny Goodman and Fats Waller. But in addition the wonderful songs there are newscasts, speeches, propaganda and other radio broadcasting of all kinds.
Stanford Italian literature professor Robert Harrison does a conversational show on KZSU, the university radio station, called Entitled Opinions (on Life and Literature), which is also distributed as one of the most fascinating, engaging podcasts in any possible universe. Choicest topics include mimetic desire, Proust, the inflationary universe, 1910, American writers in Paris and the history of the book.
The Early Television Foundation and Museum Website covers the nascent days of the nation's pastime, with interesting items like mechanical TVs and programming schedules from 1939.
NPR's On The Media presents a short set of pieces about comments on news websites and the challenges of "digital democracy," with discussion from Ira Glass about responses to a show about teenage runaways, and New Republic editor and critic Lee Siegel, who posted anonymously to respond insultingly to comments on his own blog. And a Roanoke newspaper editor discusses how one paper sees the integration of comments into online news sites and whether it's a valuable reader service. [more inside]
Interval Signals Online is a site devoted to "Interval signals, signature tunes, airchecks and identification announcements from international, domestic, and clandestine radio stations around the world" such as Radio Tirana, AFAN Radio of Antarctica's McMurdo Station, and Radio Greenland. (Last three links are automatic downloads). Tip of the hat to mykescipark.
This is the city, Los Angeles California. I work Here. I carry a badge. My name's Friday. [more inside]
Nanotube Radio. "We have constructed a fully functional, fully integrated radio receiver, orders-of-magnitude smaller than any previous radio, from a single carbon nanotube". (via)
Find a short wave radio and before long you should be able to tune into The Lincolnshire Poacher - the station plays an introduction comprising part of the eponymous folk tune followed by a robotic female voice reading strings of numbers: listen! So called Numbers Stations have been a mysterious constant of short wave radio for several decades. The Conet Project [previously 1, 2, 3] has made a collection of the recordings available allowing you to listen to "Ready! Ready! 15728", "The Buzzer" (especially mysterious), "Gong Station Chimes", "Magnetic Fields" and many others.... [more inside]
Jean Shepherd has been mentioned before but WFMU's Beware of the Blog has finally dug out an mp3 of Shepherd himself telling the story of "I, Libertine" (mp3 link) (wiki). I, Libertine was a literary hoax that began as a practical joke. Shepherd asked his listeners ("the Night People") to go into bookstores and ask for a book that didn't exist. Fueled by bewildered bookstore owners and distributors, I, Libertine eventually did end up as a genuine bestseller, proving his point that the process of choosing bestsellers was flawed.
Calling your personal online radio station the best of everything seems designed to provoke controversy. But in this case it's just one "mature consumer" taking a stand against big media and youth oriented marketing. Be sure to read the about page. [more inside]
Should Michael Reagan be free to say this on syndicated radio? Should Mark Dice be free to say this (NSFW audio) on his website? [more inside]
[NSFW]"The following program is in living color and has been rated X by the Vietnam academy of maggots. The purpose of this program is to bring vital news, information and hard acid rock to the first termers and non-re-enlistees in the Republic of Vietnam. Radio First Termer operates under no Air Force regulations or manuals. In the event of a vice squad raid this program will automatically self-destruct." Radio First Termer was a pirate radio show broadcast by "Dave Rabbit," an anonymous USAF sergeant, for 63 hours between January 1st and 21st, 1971, out of the back room of a brothel in Saigon, gracing the dial at 69 MHz and 690 AM.>> Fearing reprisal from his superiors, Dave Rabbit then shut Radio First Termer down and, after returning to the States, went back to living a normal life. 34 years later, while helping his son on a homework assignment, Dave came across old recordings of his show. He's since revived his old persona via podcast, and has also brought Radio First Termer back to the warzone--to Baghdad, Iraq. [more inside]
It's no secret that amateur radio operators, or hams, often build their own equipment. Especially with the aid of antenna tuners, most anything can be used as an antenna. One group of hams took this to the extreme, using ladders and shopping carts as antennas as they started an annual competition that would eventually see trucks, train tracks, a tree, and even a pair of exercise machines and a football stadium used. I stumbled across the site last night, and it turns out that this year's competition is this weekend! Ham radio, by the way, no longer requires a Morse code exam, just a set of questions on electrical and operations theory. Those curious can take practice tests online, since the FCC releases the question pools.
Let's Pretend With Uncle Russ. From 1948 to 1952, kids at American military bases all over the world tuned in to Let's Pretend with Uncle Russ on Saturday mornings to hear a variety show of stories and music. Although the majority of listeners were the children of U.S. military personnel who received the program through the Armed Forces Radio Service, "Uncle Russ" also had a worldwide fan club of listeners from faraway places who tuned in to hone their English skills. The site is maintained by "Uncle Russ" himself, Russ Thompson, who wrote, directed and produced the 30-minute show, as well as providing character voices. The site features photos, fan letters (the most popular reason for writing was to join the "Around the World Safety Club"), celebrity guests and more from the show's run.
Phil Schaap has hosted a jazz program for the past twenty-seven years on WKCR, Columbia University’s radio station with unapologetic passion and a depth of familiarity that comes, in part, from the personal relationships he had with the musicians themselves.
Whole Lotta Shakin' - a PRI documentary series on the history of rockabilly, hosted by Rosie Flores.