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Radio + Video + Music + Internet

February 2, 2010

The Internet seems to have this wonderful ability to bring about combinations of mediums that perviously may not have been possible. For a long time now, we’ve had the combination of radio and music, and video and music, but never thought the two could work together. But, throw the Internet into the mix, and you have a recipe for radio/video fusion. How? By using the abilities afforded to radio stations from their connections with musicians to take the live, exclusive performance to a new level. Stations have been asking artists to come in to their stations and perform live for ages, as a way to bring listeners to the station and simultaneously promote the band. Likewise, bands have been producing music videos as a means of promotion on TV stations like MTV and Fuse. So now that we have the Internet, and simple uploaders that allow us to publish videos of whatever we like online for free, why not, if you’re a radio station, throw a video camera or two in the studio? The band gets a music video, you get more hits on your website, and maybe, if they like what they hear, more listeners on your station. This is precisely what KEXP did in a recent post.

The band, Boat, got some pretty sweet videos out of this post. The KEXP videographers did an awesome job of shooting the band and capturing the fun they were having, while keeping the cuts and the shots artful and interesting. The music isn’t bad either – reminds me of some early Weezer stuff (which is always a good thing, so check ’em out!). All in all, this is an excellent example of how the Internet, blogging, new technology, etc, is bringing together mediums that, with traditional media, were forced to remain separate.

But what does this mean for music, for the media, for the Internet? Perhaps it’s yet another sign that mass media, traditional media, and Internet media and work together. Musicians have been successfully using the Internet and its publishing abilities (myspace, youtube, etc.) to promote their work (fine example here), and recently independent musicians have been catching their big breaks through popularity online rather than through record labels.

It only makes sense that radio stations would catch on, find a way to use their resources to create unique material to post, and take advantage of the vast audiences online that are constantly seeking something new. It may mean consuming radio in a different way, but it offers hope for a very old form of media that has been struggling to compete with satellite radio, the MP3 explosion, and the emergence of podcasts.

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