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DS106 Listening Party

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One positive side effect of watching this year’s NCAA Div. 1 basketball tournament by my lonesome – being surrounded this season not by rabid college ball fans, but rather quite nice, regular folk – is that I’ve taken to watching the first half of most games on mute while doing other, more productive things. Like writing letters. Or reading two books. Or listening to entire albums from start to finish.

And it was my participation in this latter activity yesterday that got me thinking about a new regular show I’d like to start headlining for DS106 Radio. As I spent time with Kate Bush’s Hounds of Love, Portishead’s Roseland NYC Live, and Thelonius Monks Brilliant Corners, I realized how much I lost when I stopped popping in a CD, having a seat, & just paying attention. As a high schooler I would take home 3-5 albums a day from the local record store, which meant every afternoon was spent doing nothing else but devouring music & reading liner notes. Then, at school or at work or wherever, I would take time to wildly discuss the merits or faults of this & that. And, on special occasions, I would listen to new albums with a handful of friends – usually while at work – & we would get into in-the-moment dialogue on the stuff coming from the speakers. I miss that.

And I don’t think this is me being nostalgic – it’s something more important than that. When you spend time taking an LP as an entire piece rather than in segments you get the magic of sequencing, the sense of purposeful construction, the complete package that the artist intended. There’s been a lot of talk about the death of the album format – but who’s doing anything about it?

So, I’m proposing a new show for the insane, creative medium that is DS106 Radio: DS106 Listening Party (get it? LP? eeh?). Each week I will play an album on air from start to finish, keeping up a running commentary – and, if the plan goes as I hope it will, moderating a discussion with others – on Twitter. I’m thinking Mondays at 9 pm MST (11 pm EST/8 pm PST) – which means it would start tonight, and I am ready to get it going. I would go between well-known albums & lesser-known gems, and mix it up genre-wise with each new session, of course.

So: what do the fine people at DS106 Radio think of this? We have a wonderful community of artful, considerate, and bright folks hovering around & through the airwaves – it’s the perfect atmosphere for a good old fashioned listening party.

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