writing about listening

Even though I make my living from t.v., I’m much more of a reader and listener. So the last few years, the “new golden age of radio/podcasting/audio” have been especially good not just for what you can listen to, but for the surprising amount of good writing about all things radio and sound.

My gotos have been Radio Survivor, which is still the single best place to read about all kinds of radio, from broadcast to online without the usual industry prattle; John Anderson’s DIYMedia, which is especially good on HD radio, F.C.C. enforcement and a.m. revitalization (or lack thereof); Paul Thurst’s Engineering Radio, which I read to understand a little bit better the real world of making radio work and to get insight into technology, minus the hype; and lately “ThePub” podcast from Current, the web site “for people in public media,” which so far has managed to talk about things that are both relevant to public media and generally interesting at least some of the time, like the rebirth of audio fiction episode a few weeks back.

Add to that the Net Radio Blog, which I fell upon a few days ago. The author has taken it upon him (her?) self to find the strange, the obsessed, the “not as well known as they should be” internet radio services and write them up. It’s weirdly compelling: I had no idea there was a service devoted to the Esperanto language – what’s more, it turns out lots of people record songs in Esperanto. The author also writes up an Austrian station that plays, among other things, zydeco in German and muses on the nature of radio, explains a little about the technology involved in netcasting.

The blog has the feel of discovery about it, what I expect it felt like 60 years ago to hear jazz coming over shortwave or what I know it felt like back in the late 60s, early 70s to find an f.m. station doing something adventurous. The blog’s been up since February and I hope the author keeps at it – there’s a lot more to talk about.

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