Music Thoughts

Discussion in 'SiriusXM Soundwave Cafe' started by kryptonite, Jul 25, 2018.

  1. kryptonite

    kryptonite Well-Known Member

    It seemed like back when Sirius and XM first started, you could get a lot of music not really available on other platforms. Of course, there weren't as many platforms, but whatever.

    Super Shuffle, Boombox, Planet Jazz, Wax, Swing Street, etc. The Express was dropped in 2003!

    Anyway, since those "niche" and "ultra-niche" channels were long-since dropped, the company seems to have been taking on more of a hits-based format.

    Some blame belongs with the merger, but certainly not all. Some of these channels could be easily added back online.

    What other channels were there?

    Here's an old thread. Octane used to play stuff similar to Boneyard and Buzzsaw.
    What's the difference between Squizz and Octane? - SIRIUS Backstage Forum

    (As I posted previously, the channels have definitely taken on more of a decades-based format and less of a sound-based format.)
  2. MadisonRadio1

    MadisonRadio1 MadisonRadio

    I enjoy a 1 hour show on Sunday on Real Jazz called Beyond Jazz. I guess at one time Beyond Jazz was a complete channel.
    JHDK likes this.
  3. scotchandcigar

    scotchandcigar arrogant bastard

    I came from the Sirius side of the merger, so I don't lament Fred or Lucy. There was Left-of-Center, which became SiriusXMU, but otherwise, that's not the issue for me. Here are my litany of issues with the music programming now.

    - Repetition like clockwork: I often listen to the new-music channels, like XMU, Alt Nation, and The Spectrum. They have a strict formula that they always follow, every day. The top tracks are repeated once per hour, 2nd tier is every 2, 3rd tier is every 4, and so-on. The Spectrum even has a formula for its "legacy" bands: U2 - 12 times/day, Talking Heads - 8 times/day, Van Morrison - 10 times/day, Steely Dan - 6 times/day, etc. Just go to, and you can see the algorithm. Even XMU repeats their new indie songs by the same formula.

    I also listen to Classic Vinyl/Rewind, 1st Wave, Lithium, and Deep Tracks. They also have a limited repertoire.

    - DJs that won't STFU: The DJs yap mindlessly between every song for anywhere from 30 seconds to 2 minutes. Richard Blade is the worst; I once heard him spend 5 minutes recapping a review of a Morrissey show in Leeds, England. He mentions Facebook, Twitter, other channels, sports programming, tour dates, special programming, or just talks about something that happened to him in 1983. Kristine Stone, Mark Goodman and all the others (don't even get me started on Madison) tell the most pointless stories about the band they haven't played yet (it's all pre-taped). The classic rock DJs are constantly reminding us that they're broadcasting from the Alan Freed studio in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and then they tell you about some exhibit they added, like I'm gonna jump in my car and drive there. An hour later, they do the same thing; day after day, year after year.

    - They preempt the regular programming all the time. Every weekend, they have Nordic Rox, and Dave Marsh, and 4 hours of Bonneroo live, and Coachella, and Robert Frick, and Stevie Nicks talks about old stuff, and Kick Out The Jams etc.

    I feel that they realized, a long time ago, that satellite radio is really not going to be the future. So they decided to do a bare-bones service, where everything can be done cheaply, and nothing changes. They are still using this airbrushed picture of Howard from 2004
    JHDK likes this.
  4. Aaron

    Aaron Moderator

    I've been a subscriber since 2004. I've always loved the service, but yeah, I don't "need" it as much as I once did. I still love that I don't have to suffer through all the commercials on FM in the car.

    I listen to the app quite a bit, but there are many other options for music now, including my own collection of songs I can always access through iTunes.

    The playlists are pretty shallow, so I really never leave it on one channel for very long. But as I channel surf, I can always find something I like to hear.
  5. HecticArt

    HecticArt Administrator

    Don't get me started on Boombox! That was the channel that made me pick Sirius over XM.

    The play lists have gotten pretty formulaic. The saving graces are that you can switch between any one of your favorite channels when songs repeat, or the Smiths come on.

    I don't mind a little chatter from the DJ's, it keeps things from feeling too cold, but I agree that Blade is the worst.

    They used to drift from tight playlists like they have now, to more deeper tracks from time to time. But they haven't done that in a while.
  6. scotchandcigar

    scotchandcigar arrogant bastard

    Hey, I like the Smiths. But I agree they get played too much; there are many other bands they could be playing instead.

    We actually use the streaming service at home for background music during dinner, or when we have people over. The Bridge is just about the only channel that I can play without my mother-in-law complaining. We often play Yacht Rock, but that has a playlist of about 12 songs.
  7. HecticArt

    HecticArt Administrator

    The Smiths are wayyyyyy overplayed, and DJ's think they only have 3 songs.
    I acknowledge what they have contributed to music, and that they are an important band, but I can't stand Morrisy's whining. It's like fingers on a chalkboard, and an instant channel changer for me. I could listen to a Smiths instrumental album with no problem.
  8. MadisonRadio1

    MadisonRadio1 MadisonRadio

    Party Mega Mix was a good channel back in the hey day of 2.0 radio
  9. Jon

    Jon Well-Known Member

    I've had the service in the car now about 4 months and I've enjoyed what I've heard up to this point.

    I've pretty much selected my favorite channels that are usually my go-to.

    The Spectrum: For the time I listen, I don't hear a lot of repeats, the playlist reminds me a lot of the old KBCO (Boulder, CO) when it was still a freeform station and not an iHeartRadio property. Only complaint is when Meg Griffin is hosting, she can be a little talkative.

    Lithium - 90's Alternative, and Alternative Rock as a whole, is pretty much my main interest music wise, so this is a nice station to listen to and hear the old hits. Biggest complaint: Madison!!!

    Outlaw Country - I like the old X-Country on XM better, but this station grew on me when I got the service back, an it's now one of my main presets. Biggest complaint: Mojo Nixon, but I only hear him on weekends once in a great while.

    80's on 8 - I grew up on the old MTV when it first started so hearing some of the original VJ's is pretty cool. No real complaints with the station, the DJs talk a lot but it seems to be about the music which I'm okay with.

    I have about 25 presets in the car, and all of them are set to music channels so I'm never at a loss for something to listen to.
    HecticArt likes this.
  10. kryptonite

    kryptonite Well-Known Member

    I had the misfortune of listening to "Downtown" Julie Brown today. They cannot get the MySXM back on the phones fast enough.

    You want to talk about heavy rotation? Add Metallica to your artist alerts and see how many times it come up on Ozzy's Boneyard. Plus, there's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Radio and maybe 1-2 other places as well.
  11. scotchandcigar

    scotchandcigar arrogant bastard

    I listen to the Spectrum too. However, if you were to sample it for a week, you'd see that they put their top 10 new songs in heavy rotation. The new Paul McCartney is played every hour. Btw, I like 1st Wave too.
  12. Jon

    Jon Well-Known Member

    I chose to come back to satellite for a few reasons. The car I bought (2017 Checy Cruze) had a trial that came with it, and I liked what I heard. I have a 10 minute drive between home and work, and i find that most/all stations i listened to locally go to commercial at the same time, usually during my commute.

    That commute will soon turn to 45 minutes which will make Sirius even more useful. Sirius also has formats that local radio has long since abandoned. You all know i’m a big fan of classic/outlaw country. Can’t hear Johnny Cash on the radio around here anymore and what they do call Country around here is crap! I also like the uncensored nature of the music, listened to Korn’s “Freak on a Leash” on Lithium on the way home the other night in all its vulgar, uncensored glory with no cutouts or bleeps ruining the song.

    It’s also indirectly made Apple Music better for me since I can hear it on Sirius and look it up/download it on Apple Music. Between the two services and podcasts I won’t need to touch local radio again!
    HecticArt and Aaron like this.
  13. HecticArt

    HecticArt Administrator

    That drive me crazy. I try to listen to local FM on my way in to work to hear what's going on in town, concerts, and what music is going around. When they all go to commercials at the same time I want to scream. SXM to the rescue.
  14. scotchandcigar

    scotchandcigar arrogant bastard

    There are 2 FM stations I primarily listen to on my commute, and one is a commercial-free college station. But I can only get it for half my ride, so it's a roll of the dice.
  15. geosync

    geosync Well-Known Member

    I don't listen to the rap channels much anymore, I've heard all of backspins catalog. And 44/45 play music that's just beyond my age and pay grade. When stern leaves I may bail too. 22 bucks a month is too much. I'm glad the early subscribers helped get it to this point.

Share This Page