Monday, June 27, 2005

Coexistence Inside A Taste Matrix

Interesting article in yesterday's New York Times Magazine about Nic Harcourt, "Morning Becomes Eclectic" and KCRW, the public radio station in Santa Monica, California. I've become quite a fan of the streamed broadcast of the show, especially the live in-studio performances, but I guess they knew that since, according to the article I am pretty much their target demo ("the median age of the station's listeners is 44").
Musically speaking, the word-dense songs of Elvis Costello and Stephin Merritt may have little in common with Astor Piazzolla's classically infused tangos, the Beatlesque synthesis of pop and vernacular Mexican forms achieved by Cafe Tacuba or the regret-laden outpourings artfully arranged over cascading contemporary dance beats by Everything But the Girl, but they coexist inside a taste matrix where people who listen to one of these artists are also predisposed to like the others. If ''Morning Becomes Eclectic'' had a Friendster page, its ''Favorite Music'' section would also include Massive Attack, Radiohead, Zero 7, Bjork, Moby, Air, Tom Waits, the Blue Nile, Jeff Buckley, Juana Molina, Rufus Wainwright, the Eels, Aimee Mann, My Bloody Valentine, Caetano Veloso, DJ Shadow, the Trash Can Sinatras and Petra Haden.
I've gotta say that I'm a fan of just about all of these. It's always nice to fit so snugly in a demographic niche.


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