1. #1
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    Enjoy Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    This sticky is for compiling a list of commercial radio stations that deserve support because they treat music as more than just background music. Please include a link to their website and any stream information you have.

    In addition to being a resource for good listening, we may be able to pitch these stations as being special to advertisers and help support what they do. I realize that there are lots of good noncommercial stations but this is specifically about commercial stations because they are supported by advertisers and not listeners.
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    I guess that Sirius/XM Radio does not count as "commercial radio".... Hope it stays that way.
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    Texas Rebel Radio

    These guys deserve mention, and you can stream from the site.
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    Peace,

    Jerryskid

    "...An entire genre of music based around the Hail Mary rescue attempt of an un-compable Cher vocal performance. Who knew? ..."-Dwoz

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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    http://www.sky.fm/

    Some pretty cool channels. Even for non-paying listeners the audio quality is halfway decent, and there's one single ad every 30 minutes or so.

    Don't know how much CDs I've already bought because I discovered them there...

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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    http://www.radiohelsinki.fi/

    Stream

    In finnish mostly, but the programs are usually good enough for a foreigner I'd say. A lot of stylistic variation in the different programs as well, but their bias is in indie-ish rock and pop of all kinds as well as soul, R'n'B, rap et al. A healthy mix of local and international releases. Used to be indie but is owned these days by the company that runs the biggest finnish newspaper, Sanoma WSOY (who didn't touch their programming so far, just provided them their news).
    *BLeep*
  7. #7
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    I need to make myself more clear. I'm trying to get a list of commercial U.S. radio stations that really serve music well.

    There are many great noncommercial stations and great stations outside the U.S. but this is about identifying commercial U.S. stations so that we can work together on creating an incentive for there being more commercial stations serving music. The current financial downturn offers us a huge opportunity to work with folks who buy radio commercials to change radio.
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    I need to make myself more clear. I'm trying to get a list of commercial U.S. radio stations that really serve music well.
    WQXA 105.7-FM (York/Lancaster PA) is the station that my wife listens to going to work in the morning. Personally I am unimpressed with their playlist but their morning show is actually entertaining. They are owned by Citidel Broadcasting.

    http://www.1057thex.com/

    My wife sez "The River" WRVV 97.3 (Harrisburg PA) fits the bill of foreground music perfectly. Owned by Clear Channel. They are about the only commercial station in earshot of my radio that is willing to play Dave Matthews.

    http://www.river973.com/main.html

    Also my wife thinks that WTPA 93.5 (Harrisburg PA) is notable. Owned by Cumulous.

    http://www.wtpafm.com/index.shtml

    I'll let you guys do the streaming and do the listening.
    "Far too many people suffer from the anal-cranial inversion. They got their heads stuck up their asses!" - Tom Dowd
    "A great, timeless album is more than just an entertainment app." - Don Was
    "Success does not mean success. You are only as successful as your last hit record." - Patrick Adams (record producer)
    "The tech sector is like a guy in a crowded prison cell, who finds a hand grenade, and sets it off, so that he'll have the entire cell to himself." - Dwoz
  9. #9
    Frustrated Chick Rock singer...now doing jazz standards poorly! Confused by Rosie O's attraction to Tom Cruise
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    In Austin:
    KGSR: http://www.kgsr.com/
    KUT: http://kut.org/

    Yes, KUT is public radio - but it's BRILLIANT much of the time.
  10. #10
    Voice like Marcel Marceau Spend years studying Twisted Sister's chord structure
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    In San Diego:

    KBZT 94.9 fm
    http://www.fm949sd.com/
    stream: http://www.fm949sd.com/listen/index.aspx


    In Seattle:

    KEXP 90.3 fm
    http://www.kexp.org/
    (unsure if it meets your commercial criteria)

    KMTT 103.7 comes pretty close
    http://www.kmtt.com
    Last edited by Webs; July 12th, 2009 at 06:22 AM. Reason: remembered another
  11. #11
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    "Commercial" means that they are supported by advertising.
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    "Commercial" means that they are supported by advertising.
    How traditional/literal are you interpreting "advertising"? What percent of station revenue from advertising qualifies as "commercial" for you?

    Pretty sure KMTT is filled with advertising. It certainly used to be several years ago, and given their "advertise with us" link on the bottom of their homepage, I strongly suspect still is.

    KEXP is less literal (no blatant ads, community donations), however, it describes here...
    http://www.kexp.org/support/bizsupport.asp
    how it integrates what appears to me as advertising funded support. Is underwriting with public on-air acknowledgment not advertising?

    KBZT is also less obvious, using a sponsorship model, stating:
    "For information about advertising on FM94/9, contact..."
    (source: http://www.fm949sd.com/sponsors/index.aspx)
  13. #13
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    The difference is in the kind of license. I'm talking about ordinary commercial radio, the kind that advertises car dealers and acne cream.

    What we are trying to do is come up with evidence that listeners who pay attention to foreground music also pay more attention to the advertising. It sounds logical but we need numbers to sell the idea.

    The idea is to create an incentive for stations to play music that engages people rather than wallpaper music that people leave on just to express how kewl they are without paying very much attention to it. In other words quality of listener as opposed to quantity of listeners.
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  14. #14
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    Now that I see what you're up to I'll reassert the link I posted as most likely fitting that criteria. Not only do they support local and regional music they also vary the genres, or I guess you would say they don't stick to a format.

    Although it's not as cool as it once was - I can remember them going from Metallica to Willie Nelson!

    Still it's well worth listening to when I'm in range, and I'm not a guy to listen to the radio, I've always got a cd playing.
  15. #15
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    wclz 98.9 in portland maine. AC/ pretty wide playlist and also indie/local.

    wcyy 94.3 portland maine alt rock(?) pretty good about supporting the local heavier scenes.
    j
  16. #16
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    In New York, unfortunately for just a short time longer:

    WQXR

    My mother listens to this station practically all day long and the signal will be cut 90% as it becomes part of (non commercial) public radio.

    I'd rather have commercials. Now I have to find a way to boost the signal or I'll have to hook the receiver up to the internet, which will put it on the second floor of my mother's house. The speakers are in the living room and the kitchen, so that's awkward.

    July 15, 2009
    Times Co. Agrees to Sell WQXR Radio
    By RICHARD PÉREZ-PEÑA and DANIEL J. WAKIN

    The New York Times Company will sell WQXR-FM to WNYC Radio and Univision, the companies announced on Tuesday, in a complex deal that preserves WQXR as the only station devoted solely to classical music in New York City, but that could alter its character.

    WQXR would move to a weaker signal near the high end of the FM band, and would become a listener-supported station, owned by WNYC, the nation’s largest public radio station. The Times Company, which has been trying to shed assets to raise cash and weather a newspaper industry downturn, would get $45 million, but would sever ties with a station it has owned since 1944.

    The long-rumored sale of WQXR, at 96.3 on the dial, and the real possibility that such a move would spell the death of a major classical music purveyor on the airwaves, was a depressing thought for fans. Classical music radio stations have been dwindling in recent decades.

    Talk of the sale also sent shivers through cultural institutions that rely heavily on WQXR, like the New York Philharmonic, the Metropolitan Opera and the Juilliard School.

    The parties involved said the station would keep a classical music format. But new ownership and a transition to public radio raise other concerns for those cultural institutions, creating a competitor for the diminishing pool of charitable dollars for the arts, and potentially changing the cozy relationship they have had with a station that gives them ample exposure and greatly broadens their reach. WQXR is a major outlet for the Met’s venerable Saturday afternoon broadcasts. “There would be a huge void if, in our home city, the international broadcasts were not heard,” said Elena Park, the Met’s assistant manager for editorial and creative content.

    Laura Walker, president and chief executive of WNYC, said those institutions had nothing to fear from the transition. “We will not only look to continue those relationships, but to extend and expand and deepen them,” she said, adding that WNYC has long wanted to have an all-music station and to lessen the music content on its existing FM station, at 93.9.

    Classical music fans may be relieved by WNYC’s pledge to keep that focus, but fewer will be able to tune in. Under the deal, WQXR would trade places on the dial, and transmitting equipment, with WCAA, at 105.9, a station owned by Univision, a major Spanish-language broadcasting company. Both stations broadcast from atop the Empire State Building, but WQXR would give up its 6,000-watt signal for WCAA’s signal of about 600 watts.

    But Steve Shultis, the chief technology officer of WNYC, said the reach and quality of the signal was “not a linear comparison” based on wattage, and there are no plans to make the 105.9 signal stronger, which would require obtaining a different kind of F.C.C. license. He said a clear 105.9 signal reaches about 30 miles from the broadcast antenna, extending into southwestern Connecticut and Central New Jersey — an area that is home to 14.6 million people. The 96.3 signal extends about 12 miles farther, reaching 17.1 million people.

    WQXR is broadcast even farther afield on independently owned “repeater” signals in Poughkeepsie and Asbury Park, N.J. It was not clear on Tuesday what would become of those arrangements. Listeners will still be able to go online to hear WQXR, which will retain a Web site of its own.

    Janet L. Robinson, chief executive of the Times Company, said that other companies had expressed interest in buying the station. It was not clear if any made actual offers.

    WQXR’s 19 full-time and 2 part-time employees who want to stay after the deal closes — expected late this year — will have to apply for their jobs. New York Times reporters and critics regularly appear on WQXR, but that arrangement will not continue, Ms. Robinson said.

    The deal gives Univision a stronger signal and a coveted spot near the middle of the FM band for WCAA, reflecting the region’s growing Hispanic population and the increasing prominence of Spanish broadcasting. WCAA’s mix of talk and music includes the morning show of Luis Jimenez, one of the most popular Spanish-language radio hosts.

    Univision agreed to pay the Times Company $33.5 million. At the same time, WNYC would buy the 105.9 equipment and license, and the right to the WQXR call letters, from the Times Company for $11.5 million. The transaction requires F.C.C. approval.

    Along with the Met’s Saturday performances, WQXR also broadcasts concerts by the New York Philharmonic, Juilliard-connected artists and events from major international festivals.

    “WQXR has been in so many ways a symbol of New York’s culture for decades,” said Joseph W. Polisi, Juilliard’s president.

    The station was founded in 1936 and calls itself the country’s oldest commercial radio broadcaster of classical music, and is in fact one of the first FM stations anywhere, as well as the oldest in New York. WQXR said it had the most listeners for a commercial classical station, nearly one million a week.

    Generations of celebrated musicians in their youth were heard on WQXR’s programs, including the violinist Joshua Bell, the cellist Matt Haimovitz and the pianist Orli Shaham. Prominent maestros of the age, like Leonard Bernstein, passed through its studios.

    Faced with losses brought on by a deep advertising slump, the Times Company has been cutting costs across all of its operations, including the flagship Times newspaper. This year it negotiated union concessions on wages and benefits at The Boston Globe, and closed a wholesale newspaper and magazine distribution subsidiary.

    The company is also seeking to sell assets, including The Globe; another Massachusetts paper, The Worcester Telegram & Gazette; and the company’s minority stake in the company that owns the Boston Red Sox.

    WNYC has started a campaign to raise $15 million to cover the purchase price and some transition and operating costs, and the Jerome L. Greene Foundation has committed $5 million. The pianist Emanuel Ax, a co-chairman of the campaign, called preserving WQXR as a classical station “the sonic equivalent of saving Carnegie Hall from the wrecker’s ball.”

    This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:

    Correction: July 17, 2009
    An article on Wednesday about The New York Times Company’s plan to sell WQXR-FM to WNYC Radio and Univision misstated the number of people who live in the area reached by the signal from 105.9 FM, which will be WQXR’s new frequency. It is 14.6 million, not 12.6 million.
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    KINK 101.9 portland or. devotes time daily to local artists and has live sets by regional artists on tour. Puts out cds of local artists for charity fund raisers. still commercial but not corporate.
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    http://www.wlng.com/

    This is a completely independent stand-alone commercial station that still actually does what U.S. radio stations used to do. They don't play very much new stuff but they engage their local listeners instead of selling demographic ass coverage to corporate mooks.

    I think there's a huge opportunity to do what they do using just net-radio and locally popular music.

    Wow, I just heard a cart machine dropout! This IS freakin' authentic!
    Last edited by Bob Olhsson; January 9th, 2010 at 07:13 PM.
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    http://www.wlng.com/

    Wow, I just heard a cart machine dropout! This IS freakin' authentic!
    I just added them to my browser toolbar.
    "Far too many people suffer from the anal-cranial inversion. They got their heads stuck up their asses!" - Tom Dowd
    "A great, timeless album is more than just an entertainment app." - Don Was
    "Success does not mean success. You are only as successful as your last hit record." - Patrick Adams (record producer)
    "The tech sector is like a guy in a crowded prison cell, who finds a hand grenade, and sets it off, so that he'll have the entire cell to himself." - Dwoz
  20. #20
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    Default Re: Commercial stations that play music for foreground listening

    www.weqx.com

    Haven't listened to radio in a while, but this station used to be cool. Based in Vermont it reaches parts of NY and Mass. When I'm in the area, it's REALLY the only station to tune to. They even used to break their own artist from time to time- Example: Paranoid Social Club was not signed by anyone ( I believe- indie or major ), but they played them somewhat regularly. This was years ago though. Whether they still do that type of stuff, I'm not sure.
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