Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child

Series produced by Bill Childs

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Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child, is a weekly radio show for kids and their grownups, broadcasting from Austin, Texas. It's indie music for indie kids.


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"Spare the Rock doesn’t, and that’s why everybody loves it."
- John Flansburgh, They Might Be Giants

"Remember how kids used to wake up on Saturday morning excited to watch cartoons? My kids wake up Saturday morning excited for the first strains of TMBG singing 'It’s Spare The Rock…with Bill & Ella…and sometimes Liam! Since we started carrying the show, it has become a local cultural phenomenon. Plus, Bill Childs is a nerd. So are his kids. And nerd is the new cool. Do you think they are going to let crappy kids music hit the airwaves? I’ve heard everything from Rush to Dan Zanes, The Pixies to Brady Rymer. Pete Seeger to The f****** Muppets. Yeah, I said it in a thing about kids music. I f****** love this show."
- Monte Belmonte, Program Director, WRSI (93.9 The River) For seven years, Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child has been providing the soundtrack to thousands of childhoods in the Pioneer Valley of western Massachusetts and southern Vermont. The show plays “indie music for indie kids,” including the best of music aimed at kids (like Dan Zanes, Elizabeth Mitchell, Lunch Money, Caspar Babypants, and They Might Be Giants) right along side kid-friendly tracks from the likes of The Ramones, Mike Doughty, Ella Fitzgerald, Brian Eno, Pizzicato Five, Andrew Bird, Fishbone, and more. Throw in book reviews and exclusive in-studios from dozens of artists, including the likes of Jonathan Coulton, Asylum Street Spankers, Dan Zanes, Dog on Fleas, Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem, Elizabeth Mitchell, They Might Be Giants, and many more, and you’ve got an idea of what the show is about. One thing it’s not is your typical kids’ programming. We’re radio nerds, and we want to raise another generation of radio nerds. That means a set that starts with Elvis Costello, switches to Brooklyn history-oriented family rock band the Deedle Deedle Dees, and then pivots to Guided By Voices, or one that starts with British folk punker Frank Turner, then family hip-hop artist Secret Agent 23 Skidoo (featuring Cactus from Granola Funk Express), and finishes up with Earth Wind & Fire. Check out some recent playlists (at http://sparetherock.com) and you’ll get the idea. It’s Kidz Bop- and condescension-free, and genuinely curated, not randomly generated by the RadioCompuBot 3000. It is good radio, period, not just good-for-kids. Now, Spare the Rock is broadcast from Austin, Texas, and is available in a one-hour format to any radio station that wishes to air it, commercial or non-commercial, anywhere in the world. Listen here on PRX.org, read more at our syndication page, or send me an email at show@sparetherock.com for details. Hide full description


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"Spare the Rock doesn’t, and that’s why everybody loves it."
- John Flansburgh, They Might Be Giants

"Remember how kids used to wake up on Saturday morning excited to watch cartoons? My kids wake up Saturday morning excited for the first strains of TMBG singing 'It’s Spare The Rock…with Bill & Ella…and sometimes Liam! Since we started carrying the show, it has become a local cultural phenomenon. Plus, Bill Childs is a nerd. So are his kids. And nerd is the new cool. Do you think they are going to let crappy kids music hit the airwaves? I’ve heard everything from Rush to Dan Zanes, The Pixies to Brady Rymer. Pete Seeger to The f****** Muppets. Yeah, I said it in a thing about kids music. I f****** love this show."
- Monte Belmonte, Program Director, WRSI (93.9 The River)For seven...

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399 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
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This week, Sonia De Los Santos will come by and sing some songs for us, plus we’ll hear a world premiere from Jenn Hartmann Luck, and new songs fro...

  • Added: Jun 07, 2021
  • Length: 55:49
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This week, we’ll hear new songs from SaulPaul, The Suburbs, Koo Koo Kanga Roo, and Shine and the Moonbeams, plus we’ll listen to Lunch Money, Rhian...

  • Added: May 31, 2021
  • Length: 53:54
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This week, we’ll hear new songs from Renee & Jeremy, Pierce Freelon featuring Divinity Roxx, Sonia De La Santos, Lucky Diaz, and Koo Koo Kanga Roo,...

  • Added: May 24, 2021
  • Length: 58:53
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This week, we’ll hear new songs from SaulPaul, Michael Hearst, Jenn Cleary, and Norma Torres, plus we’ll introduce a new feature where we play actu...

  • Added: May 09, 2021
  • Length: 53:30
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This week, Michael from Michael and the Rockness Monsters will join us to do a guest DJ set, plus we’ll hear a bunch of bug-related songs, new musi...

  • Added: May 09, 2021
  • Length: 54:55
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This week, we’re celebrating moms and mom-adjacent folks, with songs from SaulPaul, Carrie Ferguson, Mates of State, Pierce Freelon, Asylum Street ...

  • Added: May 03, 2021
  • Length: 54:12
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This week, SaulPaul is going to call in to talk about his new record, and we’ll get to premiere a song from it, plus we’ve got new music from Micha...

  • Added: Apr 27, 2021
  • Length: 54:00
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This week, we’ll hear a world premiere from SaulPaul, plus new music from Pierce Freelon, MomAndPop, Queen Piarei, Erica Rabner, and others, plus s...

  • Added: Apr 19, 2021
  • Length: 55:23
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This week, we’ll hear new music from Pierce Freelon and Father Goose, plus we’ll hear songs from Bob Marley, Shine and the Moonbeams, The Heavy, Bl...

  • Added: Apr 13, 2021
  • Length: 58:12
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This week, we’ll hear new music from Flula Borg, Artichoke, Fyutch, and Uncle Dox, plus we’ll hear songs from Pianosaurus, Ozomatli, Sugar Free All...

  • Added: Apr 07, 2021
  • Length: 55:34
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This week, we’ll hear new music from Tracy Bonham and Queen Piarei, plus we’ll hear songs from Lucy Dacus, The Not-Its!, Gloria Estefan, Red Yarn, ...

  • Added: Mar 31, 2021
  • Length: 55:22
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This week, we’ll hear more new music from Sara Watkins, this time along with Nickel Creek, plus new music from Shovels & Rope, Father Goose, and Au...

  • Added: Mar 24, 2021
  • Length: 52:37
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This week, we’ll listen to new music from Sara Watkins along with I’m With Her as well as Artichoke, plus songs from brand new Grammy winner Joanie...

  • Added: Mar 17, 2021
  • Length: 57:38
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This week, Flula Borg & Go Banana Go stop by to do a guest DJ set, plus we’ll hear new music from Shovels & Rope featuring M Ward, Stacey Peasley, ...

  • Added: Mar 10, 2021
  • Length: 56:24
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This week we’ve got new music from Shovels & Rope featuring The Felice Brothers, Flula Borg with Go Banana Go!, The Gothsicles, and Little Miss Ann...

  • Added: Mar 01, 2021
  • Length: 56:10
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SaulPaul's residency concludes this week, and what a treat it’s been! This week, you’ll hear songs from Genevieve Goings, Red Yarn, Michael Franti,...

  • Added: Feb 25, 2021
  • Length: 52:02
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SaulPaul's residency continues this week, with tracks from Aaron Nigel Smith, The Lucky Band, Roy More III, Pentatonix, Snooknuk, and much more! It...

  • Added: Feb 18, 2021
  • Length: 55:03
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SaulPaul is guest hosting again this week as part of our celebration of Black History Month. He’s playing tracks from Ziggy Marley, Common & John L...

  • Added: Feb 11, 2021
  • Length: 54:47
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Kicking off a month of guest hosting gigs, celebrating Black History Month, SaulPaul is playing songs from Andra Day, Pierce Freelon, Wendy & DB, K...

  • Added: Feb 04, 2021
  • Length: 53:33
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This week, we’ve got the premiere of a song from Nakia with Charlie Cotton, plus the premiere of a song from Shovels & Rope featuring Sharon Van Et...

  • Added: Jan 27, 2021
  • Length: 56:39