[JPL] Computers are useless

Michael J Myers jazznightly at yahoo.com
Sun Sep 10 06:33:42 EDT 2006

I Hear you , brother!
Mike Myers
former host of "Jazz Nightly" on South Dakota Public Radio

--- 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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> This week's sponsor:  Dare2 and Sunnyside Records
> -------------------------------------------
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