Interesting article from the Washington Post, about NPR’s music website. Worth a read.
A little (little) background info: NPR’s off-and-on-again commitment to producing arts and cultural programming has been cyclical through their 40-year evolution in defining what they “want to be when they grow up”. It’s an inevitable part of the process, of course, as establishing core values and mapping a related course are necessary for any organization’s success.
At one time NPR produced programs like World of Opera and Performance Today, and now most of that kind of programming has either been discontinued or handed off to other distributors like American Public Media, and Public Radio International. In recent years NPR has been focusing resources on developing their news and information programming, meaning it’s been another “off” period for their production of arts and cultural programming. And this time it may be for good. That’s where NPR Music comes in.
NPR Music launched in November, 2007 and offers everything from live concert webcasts to reviews, “best of” music lists, industry news, and interviews produced by both NPR itself and by contributing partner public radio stations across the country. NPR Music acts as both a content generator and content aggregator, with material (like “All Songs Considered”) coming in to the site from NPR flagship programs such as All Things Considered and Morning Edition. Likewise, occasionally material offered at NPR Music makes its way onto the air in one of these programs. It’s nothing if not an almighty feedback loop. It is a production model in itself.
What do you think about NPR being viewed as a “tastemaker” for music in our world? Have you visited the NPR Music site? How’s it work for you? Leave a comment, curious to hear your thoughts on this.