Since my college days as a student radio host, I’ve been a sucker for good radio and it’s inherent portability, particularly public radio, like National Public Radio (NPR), Public Radio International (PRI) and the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).
Here’s a recap of my favorite bits from the wireless over this past week for you to enjoy over the weekend. Happy listening.
All Songs Considered: New Music Preview
January 17, 2012 – This week’s All Songs Considered is the first proper episode of all-new music this year. On this episode, three guys who have never had trouble cranking out songs — Leonard Cohen, The Magnetic Fields‘ Stephin Merritt and Lambchop‘s Kurt Wagner — unveil cuts from their new albums. Also: a sneak preview from Lower Dens, an under-the-radar band from Baltimore that’s also readying a new release. Listen below or download here.
Studio 360: David Byrne and The Birth of Talking Heads
January 20, 2012 – David Byrne tells Kurt Andersen about starting a pop revolution in the early days of Talking Heads. The new DVD Talking Heads: Chronology contains film and video of Talking Heads in performance going all the way back to 1975 — before the advent of camcorders, and two years before the release of the band’s first LP. The show also reveals a bold new graphic design for teachers that takes them out of the little one-room school house and launches them into the 21st century. And despite international accolades, Iran’s filmmakers have run afoul of their government, which just shuttered the country’s largest independent film institute. Listen below or download here.
Soundcheck® on WNYC: The Music of Downton Abbey
January 19, 2012 – PBS has a hit on its hands with the British import “Downton Abbey.” Set at the start of World War I, the drama’s Jan. 8 season premiere doubled the average prime time audience for the network. We discuss why the former colonies seem to love a soap opera about the Earl of Grantham, his family and his servants with John Lunn, who composed the show’s iconic theme music. Listen below or download here.