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Playlist: Music Station Picks for June

Compiled By: PRX Curators

 Credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/43741631@N00/2243492252/">Luma Chielle</a>
Image by: Luma Chielle 
Curated Playlist
Here are the June picks for music stations from PRX Music Format Curator David Srebnik.

A suggestion from David:

"Are you on Twitter? PRX is on Twitter — I've found it to be an invaluable programming resource, providing information and updates on new program that are available on PRX. It's like getting an instant update from PRX without having to go to the PRX site.

"One PRX Twitter feed contains a link to each new PRX piece.

"The second PRX feed tells you which programs have been bought in real time."


David produces Virtuoso Voices, an interview clip and fundraising service heard on 115 stations. As an Associate Producer at NPR, he programmed the music heard on Performance Today, and directed news and music programming at stations in Texas, Michigan, Florida, New Orleans and North Carolina.

What David listens for in music programming:

"I look and listen for programming that puts the listener first, speaks listener language and answers 'yes' to questions like:

* Is it enjoyable, beautiful, entertaining or substantial?
* Will it be memorable?
* Will it advance understanding and enjoyment of the music?
* Will this contribute to making public radio indispensable?

"I'm not big on music education on the radio, especially in the form made infamous by the so-called 'old-school' of classical music announcing.

"Radio can, however, educate in a compelling and entertaining way. David Schulman's Musicians in their Own Words series and WNYC's Richard Wagner documentaries are good examples of music education without the academic shackles that have made that term deadly on the radio."

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Here are the June picks for music stations from PRX Music Format Curator David Srebnik.

A suggestion from David:

"Are you on Twitter? PRX is on Twitter — I've found it to be an invaluable programming resource, providing information and updates on new program that are available on PRX. It's like getting an instant update from PRX without having to go to the PRX site.

"One PRX Twitter feed contains a link to each new PRX piece.

"The second PRX feed tells you which programs have been bought in real time."


David produces Virtuoso Voices, an interview clip and fundraising service heard on 115 stations. As an Associate Producer at NPR, he programmed the music heard on Performance Today,... Show full description

Tapestry of the Times #32: "Homeward Bound"

From Tapestry of the Times | 58:56

I recommended this new Smithsonian Folkways Recordings and WYPR co-production when it first debuted on PRX. The high points it reached in writing, hosting, musical selection and audio quality remain just as high today.

In this edition (Show #32) of the program, host/producer Aaron Henkin chronicles musicians' universal drive to return home one way or another to their musical roots. Aaron Henkin's approach is to view homecoming by way of homesickness, and he shows how performers bring an older and wiser understanding to their hometown musical roots, including being wise enough to recognize that not all of that old music needs to be changed or updated.

Lead Belly, Woody Guthrie, Doc Watson, and proponents of musical authenticity from the Bahamas, Canada, Chile and Kenya take the stage on "Homeward Bound," and the set connecting a Chilean farmer's song with Canadian Alan Mills and a homesteader's ballad is especially memorable.

Again, superb content, flow, and tone in all of the categories of radio craft.

The Tapestry of the Times website brings additional content and value to the program and will answer your listeners' every question about performers, dates, playlists and recording information.

Consider this program and others from the series as a month-long or summer-long series of original music programming with genuine appeal to broad audience base.

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Where is ‘home’ for you?  In this episode, we explore our yearnings for home, with songs of longing from Lead Belly, Woody Guthrie, Doc Watson, and far-flung wanderers in Chile, Canada, Kenya, and The Bahamas. Radio for the homesick listener on Tapestry of the Times: Real music, real people, and the stories behind the sounds…

(Like all Tapestry of the Times materials, this program can be licensed free of charge.)

Jazz: The '59 Sound

From Joyride Media | 59:00

The age-old artist yearning and craving to stretch, experiment, and create a new language erupted in the mid-1950s jazz scene. In its wake we were left with the creation and release of some of the jazz world's (still) most monumental jazz recordings.

And it all happened in 1959.

"Jazz: The '59 Sound," from Joyride Media, discusses and demonstrates the music and innovation embedded in Miles Davis "Kind of Blue" and "Sketches of Spain," Dave Brubeck's "Time Out," containing the still remarkable "Take 5" and the hard to define and describe, but totally amazing Charles Mingus "Ah-Um."

As always with these Joyride Media jazz radio works, the producers set and demonstrate what I think is the public radio standard for balancing and blending music and information.

1959...it was a very good year.

Jazz59_small New one-hour radio special salutes the 50th anniversary of the landmark albums by Miles Davis (Kind of Blue, Sketches of Spain), Charles Mingus (Mingus Ah-Um), Dave Brubeck (Time Out) and others that helped make 1959 Jazz’s greatest year.

Memories of Moog

From John Diliberto | Part of the Echo Location: Soundings for New Music series | 03:30

Today, the Moog synthesizer's association with the groundbreaking "switched-on Bach" phenomenon is an esteemed but very distant memory.

Echo's host/producer John Dilberto celebrates the 75th birthday of Robert Moog and his creation. This 3:30 module reports on the instrument's resounding renaissance and revival in the "retro-space, ambient lounge and techno" music worlds.

Roger O'Donnell (former keyboardist with The Cure), Redshift's Mark Shreeve, German synthesist Klaus Schulze, and Jimmy Lavalle of The Album Leaf talk about how they create futuristic and absolutely intoxicating musical textures and tapestries using the Moog.

With the thoughtful planning, this could be a grabbing insert to a live shift on a AAA or eclectic music program, or on an a station with an eclectic music format. "Memories of Moog" is also perfectly suited, and still timely, for your station's local magazine program.

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Forty-five years after its creation, the name Moog is still synonymous with synthesizer for many people. His instrument was among the first that could be played on-stage in realtime. In the 1960s, Moog driven songs like "Popcorn" were commercial hits and Walter Carlos's Switched-On Bach created a fire storm of critical acclaim and controversy. In the seventies the Moog helped launch space music and the Mini-Moog became the instrument of choice for progressive rock and fusion keyboard players. Today the Moog is enjoying a revival with retro-space, ambient lounge and techno musicians. Robert Moog unplugged the final patchcord on August 21, 2005. In this tribute for his 75th birthday, we hear comments on Robert Moog and his invention from Roger O’Donnell, former keyboardist with The Cure, Redshift's Mark Shreeve, German synthesist Klaus Schulze, and Jimmy Lavalle of The Album Leaf.

Savannah Music Festival LIVE Presents: Mendelssohn at 200 featuring Sebastian Knauer

From Savannah Music Festival LIVE | Part of the Savannah Music Festival LIVE - Season Two series | 59:01

2009 is the 200th anniversary of Felix Mendelssohn's birth. While many of the official anniversary concerts and celebrations are over, this recital from the 2009 Savannah Music Festival is a wonderfully fitting tribute, filled with music and performances that make it desirable to keep the 200th-birthday celebration going.

Playing by the relatively unknown pianist Sebastian Knauer is gorgeous. Actually, it's amazing. I know you have CDs in your library with this repertoire, but the playing here is exceptional. Knauer's tone and touch is supple, and he turns Mendelssohn's youthful vigor, advanced understanding of melody, and virtuosic flourishes into wonderful animation.

Consider this in the evening or afternoon as a music "special" that you can promote and turn into a big event for your station and its listeners.

The music-to-talk ratio is mostly well balanced. The hosting and overall presentation is acceptable, with some moments stronger than others.

Knauer_sebastian_small Original air date: Week of April 20, 2009
Two hundred years ago this year, composer Felix Mendelssohn was born in Hamburg, Germany. He is now widely regarded as one of the most popular composers of the Romantic period. Tune in for an hour-long recital of Mendelssohn's music by pianist and SMF favorite Sebastian Knauer, given at the historic Wesley Monumental United Methodist Church. This celebration of the Mendelssohn Bicentennial took place on Thursday, March 26th as part of the 2009 Savannah Music Festival.

An encore of "On Wings of Song" played by Knauer and violinist/Associate Artistic Director Daniel Hope (performed at the 2009 SMF) concludes the program.

NEA Jazz Master Jimmy Cobb On Recording Porgy and Bess

From National Endowment for the Arts | Part of the Jazz Masters Moments series | 01:30

This is the newest artist snapshot in the NEA Jazz Masters Moments series. As always, these :30-2:00 modules bring wonderful light to jazz, jazz performers and your station's overall sound and service.

Newjazzlogo_small IN 1958, NEA JAZZ MASTER JIMMY COBB LUCKED INTO A RECORDING DATE THAT HAS GONE DOWN IN THE ANNALS OF JAZZ HISTORY.  IT WAS WITH A BAND HE’D FOLLOWED RELIGIOUSLY – LED BY TRUMPETER MILES DAVIS, WITH SAXOPHONIST CANNONBALL ADDERLY AND DRUMMER PHILLY JOE JONES, AMONG OTHERS.