Music History

Published on February 10th, 2017 | by Alan Cross

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The Ongoing History of New Music, Episode 777: Radio Stories

The first thing I’d like to do with this week’s show is to thank you for listening to the radio. This is my job and it’s people like you who allow me to keep paying the mortgage.

Radio is a communications, information and entertainment medium that dates back more than a hundred years. FM radio has its technology roots in the 1930s.

Radio and music have gone together since 1906 when on Christmas Eve, a Canadian-born inventor named Reginald Fessenden gave a Bible reading and played “Oh Holy Night” on his violin. That was the very first time voice and music had ever been broadcast together. I guess that makes Fessenden the world’s first radio DJ.

The effect radio has had on music (and vice-versa) cannot be overstated. The two remain inextricably entwined. Even in the era of the Internet, radio and music continue to exist in a tight symbiotic relationship.

With that kind of preamble, you might think that this episode of The Ongoing History will feature a bunch of radio-and-music stories. Well, you’d be right.

Songs heard on this week’s show include:

Catherine Wheel, Spirit of Radio

David Bowie, DJ

Ramones, Rock and Roll Radio

Joy Division, Transmission (Peel Session)

The Cure, Close to Me (Extended)

Dave Grohl, Gas Chamber

Elvis Costello, Less Than Zero/Radio Radio (Live on SNL)

The Smiths, Panic

Eric Wilhite–who is quickly becoming the show’s Spotify archivist–has created this playlist based on the above songs.

The Ongoing History of New Music can be heard on the following stations:

We’re still looking for more affiliates in Calgary, Kamloops, Kelowna, Regina, Saskatoon, Brandon, Windsor,  Montreal, Charlottetown, Moncton, Fredericton, and St John’s and anywhere else with a transmitter. If you’re in any of those markets and you want the show, lemme know and I’ll see what I can do.




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About the Author

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ 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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One Response to The Ongoing History of New Music, Episode 777: Radio Stories

  1. Amanda says:

    I would have loved listening to this episode, but for some reason, FM96 aired a rerun last night. It was a great one (Dave Grohl’s side projects), but…any idea why they did that instead of airing this one? I’ll catch their replay tonight at 11pm, maybe they will play ep 777?

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