Listening Tour – Stop 1, KCSB

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       First stop on the College Radio tour is in lovely Santa Barbara, Ca.  I have to say the first thing that impressed me with KCSB didn’t have a thing to do with the music.  Their navigation throughout the website is first classs.  Sorry to say this isn’t the way with the majority of online radio stations.  I’ll start you out with a link to their schedule where you’ll find all the info you’ll need.

       You will find a box displaying the current show in progress, link to their realtime audio and social media links in the top right corner.  The schedule itself has a great feature where you can click and sort shows by genre – very nice when you’re looking for something specific.  I must mention how slick their audio window is with a cool looking cassette.  It displays show, host, album, song and artist info.  How sweet is that? 

Now to the programming.  Will it keep me interested or have me surfing to the next station?  The programming is free form which is often standard for college radio.  Sometimes I find this bad and other times it is well-executed.  The programs I’ve been listening to over the past week have all been very cohesive.  The music blended together well and kept my interest.  In fact some shows I didn’t think I would care for actually were very good.  I listened to most of an afternoon Latin show last week and the program called Meow Mixes also had a great set. I got to hear new deadmau5 tracks and a mariachi version of a Cure song.  Doubt I would have heard those anywhere outside of college radio.

In the case of KCSB I would highly recommend you take the time to look at past playlists for shows.  They are a great indicator of what to expect.  A few shows didn’t have playlists, but most of the ones I wanted to check out did.  There is a show for nearly every musical taste.  They also feature local acts weekly.  Another great find was an interview they’ve posted from last week with Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy – it’s available in full right now. 

I plan to keep the station bookmarked so I can check them out when time allows.  What I liked the best was the blend of music without feeling mismatched.  If you give it a listen, let me know what you think of it. 

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NEXT STOP: KZSC, Santa Cruz

It’s a detour as I was going a bit further north, but the Huffington Post recently named this station one of the ‘9 Best College Radio Stations’ so felt like I would add it.

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