A letter was posted on the KBCS website regarding up-coming changes to their programming beginning August 24. For us Seattle jazz fans, Drive Time Jazz has been cut along with The Bud and Don Show, BeBop Spoken Here, 20th Century Jazz and Vintage Jazz. These shows have been replaced with John Gilbreath hosting a multi-genre show 9:00am – Noon, Monday – Friday. For more information, visit the KBCS website at http://www.kbcs.fm

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Dear supporter of KBCS,

At KBCS, we’re continually working to better serve our listening community. This ongoing effort has helped us understand how our listeners use KBCS as well as other radio stations, and it’s helped us determine what we believe a thriving community-service and listener-focused station should look and sound like.

KBCS is—and will remain—a station that prides itself on being a place for community volunteers to learn broadcasting and to be radio programmers. For more than two decades, there have been countless volunteers who have put immense amounts of energy, time, and passion into the radio shows they create at KBCS. And, as we move ahead, there will be countless others who will join current KBCS volunteer programmers and continue this important tradition. As KBCS staff, we have the deepest gratitude for the commitment and dedication of all station volunteers, past, present, and future.

The reality KBCS faces is, quite frankly, one of declining audience and financial support. To us, this has been a clear indicator that we’re not serving our audience as well as we could. Most importantly, we also see this as an opportunity to do just that.

Over the last three years, KBCS has undergone a rigorous process to better understand our audience and to formulate a cohesive strategic plan. This has involved hours of interviews, volunteer and community meetings, street corner surveys, as well as extensive consideration of when and how KBCS listeners currently listen to us. This work has led us to the new programming we’ll present next month, programming we believe will offer deeper service to our listeners.

So, beginning August 24th, 2009, KBCS will:

• Expand weekday public affairs programming from 5 to 9 a.m., offering Public Radio International’s The Takeaway from 5 to 8 a.m., followed by Pacifica Radio’s Democracy Now! from 8 to 9 a.m. Both shows will be hosted by local community members trained in the KBCS public affairs department.

• Bring on longtime KBCS host John Gilbreath every weekday from 9 a.m. to noon. John’s show will be a daily musical journey touching on many genres, and focusing on his extensive knowledge of jazz, world, and Americana.

• Feature current veteran KBCS folk hosts weekdays from 12 noon to 3 p.m., who will present programming spanning the breadth of the American music tradition, from the early days of country, folk, blues, and beyond, to today’s singer-songwriters and local artists crafting new music not heard anywhere else.

• Expand weekday public affairs programming by offering a re-broadcast of Democracy Now! at 3 p.m., followed by The Michael Eric Dyson Show at 4 p.m.

• Air locally produced programs Listen Up Northwest, Voices of Diversity, and One World Report weekdays at 5 p.m., as well as syndicated programs Counterspin, Grit Radio, and Sound of Young America

• Round out evening weekday public affairs with Hard Knock Radio from 6 to 7 p.m., with 6 p.m. headlines from Free Speech Radio News. As in the morning, the entire afternoon lineup of public affairs programming will be hosted by local community members.

As with any growth and change, we’ve had to make some tough choices. The programming plan discontinues Drive Time Jazz weekday mornings, Daily Planet weekday afternoons, The Bud & Don Show Monday mornings, BeBop Spoken Here Tuesday mornings, and 20th Century Jazz: The First Half and Vintage Jazz Wednesday and Thursday mornings. Some of this programming will, however, be
offered weekly through our online streaming archive.

These have been exceedingly difficult decisions to reach, decisions which we do not take lightly, and which were made only after extensive consideration of how we can best serve our audience. We acknowledge and pay tribute to these many talented and dedicated programmers who have added tremendously to the KBCS community for many years, and hope that they continue to be a part of KBCS and its future.

We’re always astounded by the generosity and dedication of our programmers, volunteers, and all of the people who are working together to build KBCS as a community resource. We believe the changes outlined here will have a profoundly positive effect on KBCS, and will deepen our service to the community through the programming we offer.

We look forward with great optimism to KBCS’s future, and we hope you’ll share it with us.

With respect,
Steve Ramsey, General Manager
Peter Graff, Program Director
Joaquin Uy, Public Affairs Director
Sabrina Roach, Development and Outreach Director
Uli Johnson, Membership and Web Director

Category:
Seattle Jazz

Join the conversation! 3 Comments

  1. One more reason that broadcast radio is irrelevant to modern music fans. Let’s call it what it has truly become: all jabber, all the time. The tunes are just a way to kill time between the talk.

  2. 12 tones … I agree most of the time, but losing Drive Time Jazz is a big hit to the local jazz scene. Drive Time Jazz was where you could hear new jazz recordings 5 days a week with a big dose of local jazz. I fear that the new programming will cut out most of the local musicians, leaving no presence for Seattle jazz musicians on the Seattle airways except for 1 hours on Wilke’s show on Sunday afternoons (I’m old enough to remember with Jazz Northwest was 3 hours on Friday nights!)

  3. Yes, that’s a good point. But with most of these local stations now programming 23.5 hours of NPR, I turned to Internet radio programming a long time ago…in fact that’s why I can consistently listen to Wilke’s show as a podcast, or jazz radio shows from around the country as podcasts. (Having one DJ as the gate keeper for jazz doesn’t bode well either, imho)

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