Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Great Online Radio Resources

So, I tend to listen to a lot of music. Much of it comes from friend recommendations, bloggers, album reviews and mix tapes, but a lot of it also comes from some great online radio stations. As an avid encourager of sharing good music, I thought I'd share some of my favorite resources with you. If you know of another great one, please send it my way!

Let's start local with CHIRP: The Chicago Independent Radio Project. According to their website, "CHIRP was formed to bring a truly independent music- and arts-focused community radio station to Chicago." And that's exactly what they do. They provide a great mix of small, local and national acts, all well within good taste. Definitely worth a listen.

The last 20 artists played at the time I'm writing this include The Greenhorns, Wavves, Wolf Parade, The Mary Onettes, New Young Pony Club, LCD Soundsystem, Branches, Matt & Kim, David Byrne & Fatboy Slim, Boy King Islands, Botany, Oh My God, The Crayon Fields, Gangrene, Destroyer, The Black Keys, Neko Case, Scott Walker with Rick Guest and Orchestra, Beach House and The National.

Another favorite is The Current, from Minnesota Public Radio. I absolutely love this station. According to their website, "The Current brings listeners the best authentic new music alongside the music that inspired it, from local to legendary, indie to influential, new to nostalgic." I highly encourage you to give this station a try.

The last 20 artists played at the time I'm writing this include The Black Keys, Jimi Hendrix, Cloud Cult, The Dears, The White Stripes, Wye Oak, My Morning Jacket, Grouplove, Ramones, Stars, The National, The Rural Alberta Advantage, Graham Parker, Lucinda Williams, Of Montreal, Deerhunter, Janelle Monae, Dessa, The Replacements and The Prodigy.

Future Perfect Radio is another great idea. This site has 35 different channels, and the channels are what's especially great about this station. While they have some "classic" stations to choose from, including New Music, Staff Picks, Best of the Decade, Indie 101 and Best of 2010, their more specific channels are where I usually head. These include festival specific channels, like Lollapalooza, SXSW, Coachella, Pitchfork and Austin City Limits, and also city specific stations like Chicago, NY, Austin, LA and Portland. I LOVE hearing what sounds are coming out in the different markets, and what acts were playing each festival. In addition to all these fabulous options, they also offer genres focused stations, including Femme Fatales, Lo-Fi, Indie Roots, and Post-Rock. Have I convinced you yet of the awesomeness of FPR?

Indie Shuffle is my only blog-based recommendation. Indie Shuffle offers reviews on a lot of great music, with a simple and consistent format of "Sounds Like" and "What's so Good?" And while the reading material is wonderful, what makes this a great music resource is that they include at least one song for each review, and have built a very simple and sleek music player that shuffles all the music on the blog. A GREAT way to hear new music.

The last 20 songs reviewed were by artists including The Magnetic Fields, The Radio Dept., Cake, Tennis, Stealing Sheep, Ducktails, Braids, Wild Nothing, When Saints Go Machine, The Plastics, Kodomo, Glasser, Alex Ebert, Million Young, M.I.A., Smith Westerns, Weezer, Voxtrot, Mr. Oizo and Gaspard Auge, and Midnight Juggernauts.

I know a lot of people use The Hype Machine and Last.fm, but I haven't ever really given them a go. Should I? I started out on Pandora, but once they started charging past 40 hours a week and when I started hearing the same song/artists pretty often, I began searching elsewhere. I'm glad I did, because I found the sites I just mentioned. I hope you check the above out, and enjoy the new music!

1 comment:

  1. YAY! CHIRP is where its at. especially on Wednesdays :) i've been an active Last.fm user for a few years now. i think its great. i rarely use pandora and rely more on last.fm