[JPL] Re: Younger people on the radio

Philip Booth philipbooth at tampabay.rr.com
Sat Mar 10 17:52:14 EST 2007


some good points.
Then again, it's pretty easy to spot the hosts for whom "jazz just happens 
to be the music they are presenting."
Sure, terrible presentation and clueless programming is a turn-off.
But so is the sound of someone who doesn't have any evident passion for the 
music, any sense of jazz history or any enthusiasm about its future.
Personally, I'd rather hear a few false starts and bits of dead air on a 
program presented by someone who's clearly passionate about jazz rather than 
a blemish-free, purely professional presentation by someone just doing it 
for the (admittedly small) paycheck or career experience.
Philip Booth

as a listener I can always spot the t
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Jeff Turton" <jturton at comcast.net>
To: "Jazz Programmers Mailing List" <jazzproglist at jazzweek.com>
Sent: Friday, March 09, 2007 5:30 PM
Subject: Re: [JPL] Re: Younger people on the radio


> This Week's JPL Sponsor: SUMMIT RECORDS
>
>
> I applaud Sarah's for Music Director for taking that chance on her. 
> Personally I would rather have a radio professional than a Jazz fan 
> sitting in the host chair . I'd rather have someone who understands  radio 
> concepts and structures, understands proper on air demeanor and  has an 
> entertaining personality. If they are interested in the  music , they can 
> be more than adequately trained. The problem I have  with most Jazz fans 
> who want to do radio is that they bring too many  preconceived ideas as to 
> what Jazz radio should be, based on their  past experiences and their 
> musical preferences. Younger folks who are  trained in Radio don't bring 
> those preconceived ideas to how they  approach Jazz presentation. They do 
> Radio and Jazz just happens to be  the music they are presenting. We've 
> had the discussion many times  before but I want radio to be entertaining 
> not an educational  exercise. There's a place for a specialty show with 
> that style but  you definitely don't want your general daily air 
> presentation to be  that way. I've heard way too many jazz fans as radio 
> hosts. It's  rarely good. My first co-host was a Jazz fan who thought that 
> because  of his extensive musical knowledge his approach to Jazz 
> programming  was better than that stations Program Director. It got pretty 
> ugly  before he was let go after just 6 weeks. I hired Andy Cook (who 
> helped get this discussion going) and Mike Adams because I knew they 
> would be able to execute my concept of what Jazz needed to sound like  on 
> FNX. Andy had extensive music knowledge and wanted to learn the  nuts and 
> bolts of radio presentation and Mike had good on air chops  but wasn't as 
> knowledgeable. They were both very young when I hired  them. They have 
> both developed in to solid Jazz radio professionals  that any one would be 
> proud to have on their airwaves.
>
> Jeff Turton
> WFNX Jazz Brunch
>
>
> On Mar 9, 2007, at 3:45 PM, Toulouse, Sarah wrote:
>
>> This Week's JPL Sponsor: SUMMIT RECORDS
>>
>>
>> As an early-30's woman, who has nearly a decade of jazz/music hosting
>> experience in a major market, (and having now experienced first- hand how
>> unfixed radio is, and how programming and formats can change, and
>> therefore change your life -- including in public radio) I'd like to
>> chime in on this topic.
>>
>> First of all, my former music director, two decades my elder, took a
>> chance on hiring me right out of college at 20 (BA in Communications,
>> started my professional career while still in school as a freelance
>> public affairs reporter before I started working in the music dept.  for
>> WBEZ).  I had to develop my chops for about the first four years  before
>> I had a regular full-time gig, all the while also developing my  role as
>> a producer for our performance / music programs such as the Jazz/Blues
>> Festival b'casts, and local music-related segments for our talk shows.
>>
>> I had wonderful mentors - my fellow music hosts - to bring me along,
>> ages ranging from 30s to 70s, men and women, Latino, African American
>> and white.  When I screwed up a name or pronunciation or a fact, they
>> simply told me the correct way to say things, without pretension.   I had
>> regular air-checks with my MD to review how I was progressing.  No one
>> made me feel stupid or embarrassed, and they all made me feel like  they
>> had once also been in my shoes and gave me encouragement that I  could be
>> just as good as them, with some experience under my belt.   I can play
>> the guitar and did learn general music knowledge as it did help in the
>> development of my job to have some of that background info, but I  didn't
>> come to radio as a musician or music student.   Before the  internet, we
>> had actual books around the studios so I could double check facts and
>> find interesting stories to tell....NOT just names and dates and Jazz
>> 101 lecture.  Who tunes in to for a music show on radio for a lecture
>> anyway?  Does anyone go to a jazz show to be lectured?  I never
>> understood this notion that the academic tone is supposedly the gold
>> standard for a jazz programmer.  It's boring and elitist.  Jazz and
>> classical seems to be the only type of programming that takes this
>> approach...and how's that been working for us in the last 10 years? I
>> did happen to have an affinity for jazz, as well as other genres of
>> music, so that helped, but I was certainly not a walking encyclopedia
>> when I first started.
>>
>> The older generation has been fortunate to experience many of the  great
>> artists first hand, however, the next generation, like me, was not  even
>> born until after greats like Duke Ellington died.   We have to  learn how
>> to carry the history with us, but also we DO have our own current
>> generation of artists, doing great work that WE relate to, but the  older
>> generation (generally speaking, of course), seems to be ignoring.  I
>> think we all can learn a lot from each other and move forward with  more
>> compelling radio.
>>
>> And moving on to radio itself, when it comes to being a professional
>> broadcaster, especially for public radio, the job requires a  proficiency
>> in a variety of areas beyond simply personal interests/knowledge base,
>> and beyond knowledge of JUST jazz (or whatever your main gig is).  I
>> find this to be a problem with a lot of programmers/producers,
>> regardless of age, but specifically, I find that the younger  generation
>> is not being mentored or trained to develop a broad knowledge base,  and
>> a well-studied knowledge base at that.  (Note to Jae - I hear grown
>> folks say names wrong all the time too....but I think we're all  speaking
>> in general terms with this topic anyway).
>>
>> The listeners' interests are not singular, so why should we approach
>> programming, regardless if it is music or news/talk, with a narrow
>> focus.  Sure, jazz aficionados like to hear the rundown of all the
>> members playing on a tune, with the recording date, etc, but why just
>> think of that niche audience only?  Regular people don't give a  crap, so
>> they tune out either bored to death with all the facts and technical
>> music talk, or they feel like they don't belong to the secret jazz
>> elitist club. Why not try to relate the music to more general areas to
>> regular life?  For example, jazz pops up in films and has been part of
>> culture in more ways than strictly just being music for music's
>> sake...why not relate some of those general interest connections to  jazz
>> during the course of a program?
>>
>> Also, I respectfully disagree with Mr. Wilke's statement about it  being
>> easier (I'm taking this as also meaning better, sorry if that was not
>> the implication) to train a jazz fan/musician to be a host rather  than a
>> radio/communications grad (or newer broadcaster, not necessarily just
>> young) to be a jazz host.   I think there are already too many jazz  fans
>> working as hosts, who don't also take the initiative to study how  radio
>> and audience works.  In my opinion, this is one of the reasons jazz
>> continues to fade out of public radio frequencies.   I have always
>> thought of myself as a radio programmer first, and the genres I worked
>> with as the focus of my job - my "beat" if you will.....not the other
>> way around.  Just as the city hall reporter has to keep informed and
>> study everything there is to know about his/her news beat, the same
>> approach should be applied to a music host.  Also, every market is
>> different, every audience for any given daypart could be different,  and
>> I never understood how JUST the taste of one jazz fan (just the host's
>> taste) is considered sufficient to determine programming decisions,
>> without getting to know what kind of audience you are programming to.
>>
>>
>> Before our station cut most of our music programming in January, I was
>> hosting a "traditional" jazz slot weeknights and had a specialty  program
>> on Fridays that focused on more modern jazz, as well as some other
>> modern forms of music, not necessarily categorized as jazz, but
>> complimentary as far as the sound and tone for this program was
>> concerned.  I did bring some of those modern artists into the  weeknight
>> shows a couple times a night.  I wouldn't make the train go off the
>> track, but I would try to introduce some newer artists and sounds that
>> complimented a set one to three times over the course of a four or  five
>> hour show.  (For the record, our weeknight jazz had about 100,000
>> listeners a night, and I did see in one book my Friday night specialty
>> show hit an 8 share...whoo hoo, granted it was on pretty late, but
>> still, a freaking 8 share!).  Then, the dominant news/talk wave  came to
>> Chicago.
>>
>> There is a wide and diverse range of artists making music that could
>> work with existing current jazz formats, if programmers would open  up a
>> bit.  Now, I don't believe programming to every single style that  falls
>> under the jazz umbrella works either.  Trying to please everyone at  the
>> same time doesn't seem to please anyone.   However, within a "regular"
>> jazz format, I think it is great to throw in something different than
>> the usual suspects occasionally - say once an hour, or every other  hour,
>> frequent enough to catch a listener's ear without throwing them off  the
>> rails.  Some specialty shows could also help appeal to a younger/new
>> audience.  (I don't know why NPR suits don't seem to get that most
>> younger people have historically been drawn into public radio through
>> the music programming -- not talk --, but hay, I'm not a GM or PD, so
>> what do I know.)
>>
>> Here were my picks for best of 2006 releases, most were featured on my
>> specialty show, but there are several here that I would also include
>> during weeknight jazz either regularly or on occasion, depending on  the
>> release.
>>
>> ARTIST -- CD
>>
>> Hazmat Modine -- Bahamut
>> World Saxophone Quartet -- Political Blues
>> John Ellis -- By A Thread
>> Dr. Lonnie Smith -- Jungle Soul
>> Jack DeJohnette/Bill Frisell -- The Elephant Sleeps...
>> Jamie Saft Trio -- Trouble
>> OOIOO -- Taiga
>> Nomo -- Newtones
>> Bobby Previte -- Coalition of the Willing
>> Charlie Hunter -- Copperopolis
>> Skeriks Syncopated Taint Septet -- Husky
>> Stanton Moore -- III
>> Medeski Scofield Martin Wood -- Out Louder
>> Ernest Dawkins New Horizons Ensemble -- The Messenger
>> Von Freeman -- Good Forever
>> Spaceheater -- The Record
>> Gianluca Petrella - Indigo 4
>> Dave Douglass -- Meaning and Mystery
>> Nino Moschella -- The Fix
>> Dead Combo -- Vol. 2
>> Juana Molina -- Son
>> Extra Golden -- Ok Oyot System
>> BellRays -- Have A Little Faith
>> Irma Thomas -- After The Rain
>> Califone -- Roots & Crowns
>> Islands -- Back To Sea
>> Annuals -- Be He Me
>> Beirut -- Gulag Orkestar
>>
>> Ok, thanks for wading through my manifesto.  God speed to all music
>> programmers left out there in pubic radio (Hurray for the return of  the
>> classical station in D.C....perhaps the tide is turning again?)
>>
>> Best regards,
>> Sarah Toulouse
>> Producer, Programming/Performance Studio
>> Chicago Public Radio (yes, I'm still here)
>>
>>
>> -------------------------------------------
>> This Week's Sponsor: SUMMIT RECORDS
>> -------------------------------------------
>>
>> ON YOUR DESK THIS WEEK FROM SUMMIT RECORDS:
>>
>> TED HOWE ''Love Song'':  The third release from Ted invites the  listener 
>> into a jazz time capsule of love songs.  And as fans and  critics alike 
>> found with ''Ellington'' and ''Elton Exposed'',  Howe's virtuosic piano 
>> style and arrangements lead straight to  surprise.
>>
>> Featuring the great jazz baritone Giacomo Gates and star of stage, 
>> screen and television, Lainie Kazan on a couple of tunes, Ted Howe 
>> delivers a beautiful recording of masterfully arranged standards  (Arlen, 
>> Van Heusen, Porter) and originals; a perfect mix of  instrumentals and 
>> vocals.  http://www.summitrecords.com/ product.tmpl?SKUG7
>>
>> BOB FLORENCE LIMITED EDITION ''Eternal Licks and Grooves'':   Featuring 
>> Peter Erskine, Carl Saunders and Scott Whitfield, this  all-star big band 
>> offers the listener what they have come to expect  from the 
>> award-winning, legendary bandleader Bob Florence -  Sensitive yet 
>> powerful arrangements with a HUGE sound that will put  you on the edge of 
>> your seat.  Spectacular outing!
>>
>> Includes ''Eternal Licks and Grooves'' commissioned by ASCAP and  IAJE 
>> honoring Count Basie and ''Appearing In Cleveland''  commissioned by the 
>> LA Jazz Institute honoring Stan Kenton. http:// 
>> www.summitrecords.com/product.tmpl?SKUG8
>>
>> Radio and print media promotion by Dr. Jazz, 800-955-4375, 
>> drjazz at drjazz.com
>>
>>
>>
>> To become a sponsor contact Devon Murphy
>> at devon at jazzweek.com / 866-453-6401 x3 or Ed Trefzger at 
>> ed at jazzweek.com / 866-453-6401 x1.
>>
>>
>> +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
>>
>> Send jazzproglist mailing list submissions to
>> jazzproglist at jazzweek.com
>>
>> To subscribe or unsubscribe via the World Wide Web, visit
>> http://lists.jazzweek.com/mailman/listinfo/jazzproglist
>> or, via email, send a message with subject or body 'help' to
>> jazzproglist-request at jazzweek.com
>>
>> You can reach the person managing the list at
>> jazzproglist-owner at jazzweek.com
>>
>> Delivered to: jturton at comcast.net
>
> -------------------------------------------
> This Week's Sponsor: SUMMIT RECORDS
> -------------------------------------------
>
> ON YOUR DESK THIS WEEK FROM SUMMIT RECORDS:
>
> TED HOWE ''Love Song'':  The third release from Ted invites the listener 
> into a jazz time capsule of love songs.  And as fans and critics alike 
> found with ''Ellington'' and ''Elton Exposed'', Howe's virtuosic piano 
> style and arrangements lead straight to surprise.
>
> Featuring the great jazz baritone Giacomo Gates and star of stage, screen 
> and television, Lainie Kazan on a couple of tunes, Ted Howe delivers a 
> beautiful recording of masterfully arranged standards (Arlen, Van Heusen, 
> Porter) and originals; a perfect mix of instrumentals and vocals. 
> http://www.summitrecords.com/product.tmpl?SKU=477
>
> BOB FLORENCE LIMITED EDITION ''Eternal Licks and Grooves'':  Featuring 
> Peter Erskine, Carl Saunders and Scott Whitfield, this all-star big band 
> offers the listener what they have come to expect from the award-winning, 
> legendary bandleader Bob Florence - Sensitive yet powerful arrangements 
> with a HUGE sound that will put you on the edge of your seat.  Spectacular 
> outing!
>
> Includes ''Eternal Licks and Grooves'' commissioned by ASCAP and IAJE 
> honoring Count Basie and ''Appearing In Cleveland'' commissioned by the LA 
> Jazz Institute honoring Stan Kenton. 
> http://www.summitrecords.com/product.tmpl?SKU=478
>
> Radio and print media promotion by Dr. Jazz, 800-955-4375, 
> drjazz at drjazz.com
>
>
>
> To become a sponsor contact Devon Murphy at devon at jazzweek.com / 
> 866-453-6401 x3 or Ed Trefzger at ed at jazzweek.com / 866-453-6401 x1.
>
>
> +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
>
> Send jazzproglist mailing list submissions to
> jazzproglist at jazzweek.com
>
> To subscribe or unsubscribe via the World Wide Web, visit
> http://lists.jazzweek.com/mailman/listinfo/jazzproglist
> or, via email, send a message with subject or body 'help' to
> jazzproglist-request at jazzweek.com
>
> You can reach the person managing the list at
> jazzproglist-owner at jazzweek.com
>
> Delivered to: philipbooth at tampabay.rr.com 



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