This isn't another Vortex thread, so please don't kill me.
We all know that the current Dance programming is very narrow in scope (basically all mainstream with a few underground tidbits thrown in there). My suggestion is to have one stream dedicated to a wide variety of the underground Electronic music. I love Trance, but I'd love to hear more of the other underground genres as well. Right now they're only minimally represented on Planet Dance.
What do you all think of dedicating a stream to underground beats (Trance, House, Hard House, Drum & Bass, Breaks) ??? Do you think it will garner enough of a following to make it viable ?
Here's the email I sent to Programming. I hope they'll consider it.
I have sent emails and snail mails before, but I would like to summarize my suggestions for your Dance/Electronic Music lineup. It is my sincere hope that you can refine your lineup to cater to the entire spectrum of Electronic music fans, and not just the mainstream dance crowd.
Your current three offerings (Remix, Planet Dance and The Beat) cover only a very narrow range of the available genres of electronic music. I can flip between all three and hear the exact same thing: mainstream, vocal club dance music. Although this may be the most popular genre, you are isolating a large portion of your listener base by catering only to the mainstream.
I'm sure you have seen by now that there is a HUGE following for Trance music in the Electronic music community. The other underground genres such as House, Hard House, Drum & Bass and Breaks are only minimally represented on Planet Dance. I believe that there is enough of a listener base to dedicate one stream to underground electronic music.
Perhaps all-Trance wasn't working with The Vortex (although I *loved* it). Expanding on the underground concept, you may wish to consider dedicating one stream to Trance, House, Hard House, Drum & Bass and Breaks. By doing this, I believe you can encompass a larger spectrum of listeners, and satisfy those of us who crave the underground, raw, non-commercialized electronic music. Planet Dance's Groove Mix weekends and Planet Trance programming is a good example of this.
In summary, I would ask you to consider a stream organization similar to the following:
1. Mainstream dance (perhaps two streams, The Beat for club music, and another stream for mainstream Dance)
2. Remixes and DJ mixes (like The Remix, but add more variety of DJs and genres, not just mainstream dance)
4. Underground beats (Trance, House, Hard House, Drum & Bass, Breaks)
This leaves you with 4-5 Electronic music streams that covers a large spectrum of the category without isolating significant portions of your listener base.
As an aside, I was VERY happy to notice that Victor Dinaire played a set on The Remix a while back. The Planet Trance sessions that I have been able to catch are very good. You have the right idea here and are definitely going in the right direction. You know that there is a demand for great underground Electronic music. I suggest you capitalize on this and dedicate one stream to the non-mainstream genres. This will allow you to concentrate on the mainstream styles on your existing streams, and cater to the large following for underground music on another.