Sunday, January 21, 2007

Brave New Waves : "With Apologies From CBC Stereo"

Brave New WavesCleverLazy has the scoop on CBC Radio Two's Brave New Waves coming to an end, after making it's debut on CBC Radio almost 23 years ago on February 5, 1984. Well not quite a radio program broadcasting on FM radio it is no more, but apparently it'll continue on Sirius satellite radio and via podcasting. As I'd mentioned on Stille Post recently, I was all ready to accept BNW's demise. As much as I was grateful to BNW in the 90's(mostly between '95 and '99, although my earliest recollections of BNW were probably the late '80s/early '90s) for introducing to me to music "on the fringe"(which at the time had much to do with indie rock, before it's commoditization), since the beginning of the new millenium I've barely had the attention span to really listen to the program. With the internet, mp3's, and blogs, these became my primary methods of discovering new music. Not to mention, with working full-time, I no longer had the tirelessness to stay up after midnight to listen to any of the program. If BNW was totally kaput I'd be saddened for sentimental reasons but given that I haven't listed to BNW in ages, I wouldn't want to be a hypocrite and start griping about it now. So with BNW ending as a conventional radio program on FM radio and apparently(hopefully) continuing on satellite radio and through podcasting, it's not so much an end as a new beginning(as corny as that may sound).

A few years ago I'd posted about the influence that programs such as Brave New Waves(plus weekend CBC Radio shows like Radiosonic and RealTime) had on my musical tastes, and I'd already at that point admitted I wasn't listening to BNW much anymore. (Around the same time, I did go through a period of BNW nostalgia and ended up trading recordings of Brave New Wave artist profiles with someone I met over the 'net.) With so much music at our fingertips(ie. the internet), it's a shame that my regular radio listening habits have declined so much. The advent of podcasting in particular, seems to have both beneficial and adverse effects on radio; on one hand podcasting from the radio industry itself provides a valuable service by providing on-demand progamming to mp3 player users, but on the other hand with just about everyone jumping into the podcasting ring, radio itself could be on the decline. One could argue the democratization of broadcasting itself through podcasting is more than enough reason that podcasting is good, and I'd tend to side with this. However, I can't help but feel a little twinge of disappointment for the good 'ol days, when listening to the radio was just a twist of a knob a way and the anticipation of listening to your favourite DJ.

ps. I recently purchased(and am awaiting delivery of) a Camnex CH660 mp3 player so I'm hoping that there ends up being podcasts of Brave New Waves in the future. In particular, I really hope Patti Schmidt is still around. She has the most soothing radio voice I've ever heard.

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