The Case for New Unfamiliar Music

Denise will often encourage me to retire to my radio studio when she goes to bed. “Just put on your headphones — the Genelecs will keep me awake” (well, she doesn’t refer to the near-field monitors by name, but she does request that I wear phones). I’ll often take her up on the offer… this room, and the homemade theater in the unfinished basement, are my two inner sanctums.

When I retire to the studio, you might find me on YouTube with the Music Enhancement Channel. This comes from a guy who’s sole purpose is to take older (OK, really older) songs and remix them into audio pieces of beauty that sound really nice, using headphones or otherwise. Then, there was a someone who purchased some really old radio gear from a major station in New York (all old, analog, scratched up stuff) and built an audio chain where he’d play back vintage hits through audio processing that resembled what you’d hear on AM or FM in the 70s. It was noisy, compressed, and completely “pumped” (where you hear audio getting louder and software as things like kick drums are processed). Contrary to the Music Enhancement Channel, this was the worst audio in the world. But, it took me back to 70’s Top 40 radio.

OK… just to set the stage, I’ll come clean. These listening sessions all concentrate on really old music — the hit music of my youth. Yeah, it’s fun to “go back to the good ol’ days” and think about what I was doing, who I was dating, what I was driving (probably my grandma’s ’68 Mustang), what I was drinking (probably Coors or a Coke), and other fond memories of youth. It’s fine. It brings back (mostly) good memories. But, after a while, I yearn for something new. I’ve created an online radio station for others like me.

You probably won’t hear most of these YouTube “from my youth” tracks on The Other Side. But, you may hear some. I have a Classic category that features more obscure things from years way past (remember Chase’s Get It On, I’m a Man from Chicago, or Lighthouse’s One Fine Morning?). It’s fun to drop one or two of those in an hour. But, then it’s time to return to more current times. There’s just way too much music to keep listening to what you used to listen to over and over and over again.

So, for my friends who spend a lot of time on Classic Rock and Classic Hits radio stations, or who go to the “70’s Pandora Channel” or “Bubble Gum Rock” collections on Spotify, let me ask you to give newer music a chance. There are new memories to be made in 2020. New, fascinating artists to learn about. New emotions to explore. New places to drive. New things to drink. And, new music to make new memories.

Join me as we explore lots of music on The Other Side — old, and new!!!