Ongoing History of New Music

Ongoing History Daily: The introduction of stereo (part 3)

If you’re listening to me on an FM radio, you’re listening in stereo. But FM wasn’t the first type of stereo broadcast.

The first broadcast was made with AM radio back in 1925 by an experimental station run by the BBC. They broadcast a classical music performance from Manchester in a weird sort of way. The sound from the right channel came from this station while the sound from the left side came from another local BBC station. It was awkward, but it worked.

Over the next 30 years, similar experiments were conducted on both sides of the Atlantic, all using AM radio. It wasn’t until technical standards for FM were established in 1961 that proper FM stereo could be tuned in.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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