[JPL] Re: Computers are useless

Al Karia jctrane at gmail.com
Mon Sep 4 14:59:51 EDT 2006


amen, brother!!

On 9/4/06, Bob Rogers <rwsfin at hotmail.com> wrote:
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> "Computers are useless because all they give you are answers."
>
>                                             Pablo Picasso
>
> Suppose I assert that the only acceptable way to present any form of
> artistic expression is to present it with artistic intentions.  That is,
> present it in a manner aesthetically pleasing to the presenter, one who
> always feels perfectly free to "lay it out as it plays," like a good jazz
> musician.  How would that idea strike you?  Unworkable?  Pretentious?
> Self-indulgent?  Naïve?  Incorrect?  How about Necessary?
>
> The notion today that one or two people in a radio station should compile a
> list of music that it's okay to play and that that list will best represent
> the music and serve the listeners, is an outmoded idea and exactly the
> opposite of what needs to happen.  If every member of your air staff is a
> knowledgeable and gifted presenter, centralizing the decision of what gets
> played is inherently inferior to the collective consciousness (including the
> moods, spells, notions, eccentricities and sudden urges) of an air staff.
> If you don't have a good air staff, maybe you should switch to a news/talk
> format.  That way there's at least a chance that someone might say something
> interesting.
>
> Music radio was born when music was scarce.  From the 1920's until quite
> recently, radio was a way to help mitigate that scarcity.  Today, as people
> discover that they are able to hear almost any music they want when they
> want it, music is no longer scarce.  With an iPod and a little effort most
> people can build their own music stream.  There's certainly less and less
> reason to spend time with a radio station that's not exceptionally good.  By
> good, I mean unique, irreplaceable.
>
> I think that one of the fundamental survival skills for music radio is to
> provide unique, one-off sources of music that are as compelling as what
> listeners are doing for themselves, a valued option despite the fact that
> they may also "roll their own."  Music-based stations with centralized play
> lists and other tools of "top-down" management, are facing diminishing
> importance.  They mistakenly assume that an optimum presentation of music is
> some kind of marketing science rather than an art, and that as such, music
> selection should be placed firmly in the hands of "program management
> professionals" who act as gatekeepers or tastemakers.  In the name of
> consistency, such stations offer a distillation of the views of those who
> are well-schooled in chart reading and adherence to whatever passes for
> programming status quo.  But views are no substitute for vision and
> consistent is not a synonym for compelling.
>
> Another survival skill is to become cutting-edge adept at, and attentive to,
> your web presence and deft adaptation to other emerging platforms.  If you
> live, it is by the grace of your role as a content provider.  Old-school
> jazz radio won't cut it in that environment.
>
> You need to put on a hell of a show, actually a series of them.  That's the
> kind of consistency that really counts.  To do that you need an air staff of
> knowledgeable and gifted presenters, people who already know what to play.
> Such people are not known to be particularly interested in what's on your
> list or what your view is of those eternal questions, "What is jazz?" and
> "What are we to do? (Ruby, my dear)"
>
> That's why I'm not interested in listening to anyone that I think would
> follow my play list, much less yours.  I want crazy-brilliant, willful,
> passionate people on the air, doing what they love to do, making it up as
> they go along, people who love playing music more than they love the radio,
> or for that matter, they mamas.
>
> Can I get a witness or something?
>
> 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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> (vibes), ROBIN EUBANKS (trombone), and NATE SMITH (drums).  CRITICAL MASS
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