NPR is a changin’

I don’t know about you, but I have noticed some subtle changes on the good ‘ole NPR. I listen daily and a few little things have made me smile and take notice. I am not passing judgment here, just taking notice.

NPR goes straight edge – I have been hearing a lot of Minor Threat  in between stories lately. The first time I think I heard it after a story about some kind of bureaucracy. Maybe it was about health care? The story ends with a nice wrap up line by the reporter and then Minor Threat’s song “Sitting in the Waiting Room” begins. Sweet. I enjoyed the memory and the perfect pairing of music and didn’t think anything of it. And then it happened again. I cannot remember the song or the story, but about a week later I heard Minor Threat again! I wonder if NPR has hired a new music manager who is a MT fan!? Did they sign a contract with MT to use their music? I have been a fan of Minor Threat since about 1987. Listening to their music on NPR all I could think was how, back in the day, this kind of music was so, well, hardcore. And now I hear it punctuating news stories on public radio!

“You coulda had a V-8” – Yes, I heard this on NPR! Just the other day, around the end of the hour in the evening, during news time, there’s always this announcement about how NPR is supported by blah, blah…and then a list of all these foundations like the MacArthur foundation, and charitibles, and funds, etc. It’s always the same guy’s voice – the NPR voice –  that lists these donors in that crisp clean way.  The same guy has been naming NPR’s supporters forever. HIs voice is calming and reassuring. A few years ago he had to start saying new, more commercial names like “Toyota” and “Cisco”.  There must have been a little *cringe* factor there for him. But you know, you gotta do what you gotta do. NPR always kept these more commercial announcements in line. They have never gotten too commercial-y, which is helped, in part, by the uniformity of this one announcer who is announcing all the sponsors in the same clean, but deadpan, voice. But then, I heard him say “You coulda had a V-8”! I just knew he was cringing as he said it!

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