Monday, May 01, 2006

Meet Me in the Alley

Anyone who has been reading this a while knows by now that I’m not the techno-savviest blogger out there. It’s not an area I’ve invested in as far as my personal or professional development goes, and I do regret it. On a daily basis, as a recruiter and as a world citizen, I am reminded how far we all need to go to stay competitive in this techno world. Even in the most remote Appalachian locations, broadband –- underwritten by government and foundation grants to ensure that rural populations, particularly students, have access to information and learning tools available on the Internet – is king. I’m still suffering through dial-up, but I’m also revenue-challenged at the moment.

My resistance to going fully high-tech has hinged on two other points aside of affordability: getting past the unfounded notion that I’m not intellectually capable of handling technology, and exhaustion or laziness that sets in at 9 or 10 p.m. But there is no question that I have to conquer it, and I’m taking steps in that direction. This blog is, in a way, part of my little experiment with self-directed learning. And by the minute, electronic media is changing the way the music industry operates and sustains itself. Ask any troubled orchestra exec and he or she will tell you: in the game of survival, relevancy is everything.

Folk was at the curve a few years ago when Internet-based radio took off. The brainchild of WKSU FM, my own personal favorite NPR station, is an incredible gift to us folk-wonkies. Spearheaded by WKSU folk host Jim Blum, one of Northeast Ohio’s best-loved personalities, FolkAlley has attracted world-wide attention and faithful listeners from all over the world. A team of hosts and other professionals keep the wheels moving, 24/7.

There are a number of impressive internet radio efforts out there, but obviously I’m tipping my hat to FolkAlley for keeping the world in tune with the latest folk, bluegrass, and traditional recordings, news about artists, interviews, downloads of live shows, and much, much more. Be sure to stop by, check out the many downloads – including Tim O’Brien’s April 8 show at The Kent Stage – enjoy the interviews, see what’s coming up, and stream the best of folk.

Special thanks to Jim Blum, a true local hero and dedicated and tireless steward of the best acoustic music in Northeast Ohio and beyond. In addition to FolkAlley, you can catch his original show on WKSU 89.7 FM every Friday evening at 9:00 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday at 8:00 p.m. He’ll spin you some good stuff, tell good stories, and keep you in our region’s live acoustic music loop. Tune in!


At May 02, 2006 3:50 PM, Anonymous Fearless said...


You've got it backwards.
Compared to dial-up, DSL or cable is EASIER not harder.

We spend $50 a month to get (GAG) Roadrunner, which includes basic cable TV service. (And Anita dicovered that actually, we get everything except the premium channels like HBO) (Drat! I really mis "the Wire," "Deadwood" and "The Sopranos."

At May 03, 2006 7:14 AM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

Wellll, I'm not sure it's quite as affordable here, but I'm getting pretty desperate. The big money waster is the phone service. I almost never use my landline except for dialing up, and that is just not fast enough for downloads. The last recording I procured from iTunes took about three days, and that included the last track from the Darling Corey (Art Stamper) download. As little as I watch TV, I hate to lose the Discovery and History channels for Gabe, budding archaeologist. PBS doesn't have that level of stuff on until after he is in bed.


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