[JPL] Special Programming

Bob Rogers rwsfin at hotmail.com
Sun Sep 3 16:10:15 EDT 2006


First, thank you for making the request to post my "Special Programming" 
comments on your website.  That is flattering and I deeply appreciate your 
interest.  So feel free to do with it as you please.

I really hope that music radio programming philosophy makes a fairly radical 
paradigm shift in the near future.  The programming I describe already 
exists and is spreading much more quickly than radio's addiction to 
additional news/talk programming.  Music radio's biggest audience losses are 
to the fan-devised and peer-advised broadband-based music streams, a 
platform that is rapidly gaining increasing portability, likely ending in 

To survive, music programming originating from radio stations will have to 
be broadband saavy and fully present on the web.  The programming must also 
be perceived as "value-added" by a sufficient number of music fans who 
consider it worth listening to and financially supporting.  Stations that do 
not meet this value-added criterion will be forced to survive on the 
economic limitations of terrestrial radio, a path that seems to slope 
steadily downward, and particularly so for music programmers.

Music radio's fortunes continue to decline, now to the point that it's 
widely viewed as the least desirable option open to stations, after (in 
order of preference) network or syncidated news/talk, network or syndicated 
music, or local news/talk.  It's long part time to state that in this 
critical period for music programming there is no credible status quo to 
defend.  It all has to be rethought.  And that's what's liberating.  It 
means that, for many music fans, the experience of hearing music is 
undergoing a radical upgrade brought about by their own initiative.  They 
don't need "music programming professionals" unless these "pros" can put 
something really valuable on the banquet table.  How cool is that?

Again Eric, thanks.

Bob Rogers
2816 Barmettler Street
Raleigh, NC 27607
WSHA - www.wshafm.org
Bouille & Rogers Consultants
email: rwsfin at hotmail.com
phone: (919) 413-4126

>From: "Eric Alan @ Jazz Rendezvous" <eric at jazzrendezvous.co.za>
>Reply-To: <eric at jazzrendezvous.co.za>
>To: "'Bob Rogers'" <rwsfin at hotmail.com>
>Subject: RE: [JPL] Special Programming
>Date: Sun, 3 Sep 2006 17:59:30 +0200
>Thanks  Bob
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Bob Rogers [mailto:rwsfin at hotmail.com]
>Sent: 03 September 2006 17:54
>To: eric at jazzrendezvous.co.za
>Subject: RE: [JPL] Special Programming
>Sure, that's fine w/me.
>Bob Rogers
>2816 Barmettler Street
>Raleigh, NC 27607
>WSHA - www.wshafm.org
>Bouille & Rogers Consultants
>email: rwsfin at hotmail.com
>phone: (919) 413-4126
> >From: "Eric Alan @ Jazz Rendezvous" <eric at jazzrendezvous.co.za>
> >Reply-To: <eric at jazzrendezvous.co.za>
> >To: <rwsfin at hotmail.com>
> >Subject: RE: [JPL] Special Programming
> >Date: Sun, 3 Sep 2006 17:15:50 +0200
> >
> >Nicely written Bob would you mind my posting it on the articles page on 
> >website?
> >
> >Thanks
> >Kindest regards,
> >See it … with your own ears
> >Yours in Music
> >
> >Eric Alan
> >Consultant
> >"JAZZ RENDEZVOUS with Eric ALAN" on Fine Music Radio 101.3 Mondays to
> >Fridays from 19h00 to 20h00.
> >Editor: JAZZ RENDEZVOUS website: www.jazzrendezvous.co.za
> >Member: Western Cape Musicians Association
> >Member: SAJE (South African Jazz Educators Association) and IAJE
> >(International Association for Jazz Education)
> >Master of Ceremonies: Cape Town International Jazz Festival and the Cape
> >Town Jazzathon and Athlone Academy of Music Festival
> >Representative to the National forum for the promotion and development of
> >SA
> >Music.
> >Former SAMA (Judge South African Music Awards)
> >Contributor and CD Reviewer to the ALL THAT JAZZ column in THE ARGUS 
> >Wednesday
> >Postal Address: Postnet Suite 261, Private Bag X16, Constantia, 7848. 
> >Town, South Africa
> >Phone Mobil: 		27 – (0)21– 82 – 456 – 2195
> >Phone Office: 		27 – (0)21– 683 – 9845
> >Skype: 			ericalan2
> >Email:			editor at jazzrendezvous.co.za
> >Email Private: 		eric at jazzrendezvous.co.za
> >When in Cape Town or on the internet remember to tune in to Jazz 
> >on Fine Music Radio 101.3 every day, Monday to Friday from 19h00. FMR
> >streams from the Jazz Rendezvous website just follow the links
> >www.jazzrendezvous.co.za
> >
> >-----Original Message-----
> >From: jazzproglist-bounces at jazzweek.com
> >[mailto:jazzproglist-bounces at jazzweek.com] On Behalf Of Bob Rogers
> >Sent: 03 September 2006 04:53
> >To: jazzproglist at jazzweek.com
> >Subject: [JPL] Special Programming
> >
> >-------------------------------------------
> >
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> >-------------------------------------------
> >Special Programming
> >
> >Programming platforms come and go; there’s nothing immutable about 
> >radio, tape, satellites or the Internet itself.  To me all platforms are
> >just venues from which to disseminate music.  As a provider of music in 
> >era when access to music is increasingly ubiquitous, shouldn’t you think
> >about how to provide programming that’s not easily replicated by a
> >competitor?  It appears to me that providing programming that is easily
> >copied is a strategy with a diminishing future, even when it is, as is
> >sometimes the case, successful.  Providing original, one-off programming
> >that is not easily duplicated is a strategy that is an option for those 
> >are up to the task.  Why continue getting creamed by talk radio plus 
> >your remaining audience for music steadily bled by iPods, broadband, 
> >
> >In an era in which unlimited access to music is increasingly commonplace,
> >people who wish to do so can and do easily construct their own music
> >streams.  To survive as a music content provider, it will become
> >increasingly necessary to provide presentations that are unique and 
> >by enough people to allow you to compete with the streams they are 
> >for themselves.  In any music genre, is there still a role for stations
> >just
> >
> >programming current releases and a mix of older material?  Of course, but
> >perhaps it is an increasingly limited one.
> >
> >In order to most effectively provide original, not easily duplicable
> >programming, it will be necessary to radically rethink the role of 
> >management, which will become more akin to talent management, because it
> >will be necessary to hire air talent capable of operating much more
> >autonomously than is now the case, people making relentlessly 
> >presentations based on their personal encounter with improvised and/or
> >vernacular music.  The prime directives of each program would be that the
> >program host’s curiosities and interests determine the content of the
> >program and that it be a damn good show.
> >
> >The primary directive of program management would be to hire and nurture
> >the
> >
> >air talent and expect each program host to consistently deliver great,
> >original programming that contributes a compelling and unique element to
> >the
> >
> >station’s programming mosaic.  It would be understandable, but simplistic
> >and misleading, if you think of that as “personality radio” except in the
> >sense that the program host controls the programming.  It would be more
> >useful to think of it as a process of raising the bar for air talent.
> >
> >To be sure, operating a music-based radio station built upon a more
> >expansive programming philosophy is considerably more complex than is
> >managing a staff built upon the top-down, centralized control mechanisms
> >that stations commonly employ.  More difficult, but absolutely inevitable
> >as
> >
> >a viable option for those organizations capable of executing it well.
> >
> >Ed Trefzger, in referring to Chris Anderson’s book, The Long Tail, 
> >asserted that, for all of the wonders of niche marketing that are now
> >possible, radio remains a platform best suited to broadcasting rather 
> >niche marketing.  I don’t disagree with that but neither do I think it an
> >either/or proposition.  When you devise a music format strategy aren’t 
> >seeking to carve out a niche within the listening audience?  When all 
> >stations sound alike, the musicians, the audience and the stations are 
> >poorly served.  And that’s a shame because it doesn’t have to be that 
> >I don’t want WBGO to sound like WWOZ or vice-versa, nor do I want my
> >station
> >
> >to sound like either of them or like any other station in existence.
> >
> >For a variety of reason, I do not believe that most music programming
> >organizations, particularly radio stations, are capable of successfully
> >executing a radically more expansive approach to music programming.  But 
> >doesn’t bother me that so many music stations are struggling to attract 
> >retain an audience.  Music is abundant and there is less and less reason 
> >spend time with content providers on any platform unless they are doing
> >something that you find very compelling.  It’s the “get hot or go home”
> >principle in action.  What’s so bad about that?
> >
> >Certainly there are plenty of music stations that are happy with what
> >they’re doing and how it’s working for them.  But for the rest, it is
> >reasonable to expect that some organizations will decide that failing to
> >take a chance when you really need one is the biggest risk of all.
> >
> >This is a great time to be around.  Finally, there’s no credible body of
> >music programming “truths” to disprove, no tired mantras to ridicule, no
> >music programming establishment to overthrow.  I find that very 
> >
> >Bob Rogers
> >2816 Barmettler Street
> >Raleigh, NC 27607
> >WSHA - www.wshafm.org
> >Bouille & Rogers Consultants
> >email: rwsfin at hotmail.com
> >phone: (919) 413-4126
> >
> >
> >-------------------------------------------
> >
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> >
> >-------------------------------------------
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