Wednesday, August 09, 2006

 

Classic Rock and African-American Artists

I got a lot of feedback on this article. Some readers wrote to complain that I had called the lack of African-American artists on Classic Rock radio "racist" when in fact I had argued the opposite. It seems that the real culprit is a too-narrow idea of what classic rock is (or "format", my third proposed explanation). Two other great artists who get short-shrift from classic rock stations are Elton John and Billy Joel. So it seems that "Classic Rock" is also limited to guitar-based, as opposed to piano-based, rock. But I'm happy to report that locally, Arrow 93.1, which was just another classic rock station, has changed formats to Jack-FM which does not seem to be limited by these old format restrictions.
Comments:
I like the mix that jack plays better than what arrow used to play. That button was always my 5rd or 6th choice before, but it has been promoted! Did you read the article about the group "Love" by Robbie Kreeger in the LA Times the other day? I was not familiar with the group, but now I want to hear some of what they did. Too bad I'm hearing of them posthumosly.
 
I had read Arthur Lee's obituary, and your comment reminded me to read John Densmore's tribute to Love. Is that the one you meant? I'd heard of the group as one of the great L.A. groups of the 1960s, but cannot remember hearing them on the radio. (I too would like to hear more of them and about them.) This seems to be an example of the too-narrow format that KLOS and other classic-rock stations play.
 
Yes Doug, that was exactly the one I was referring to. I'm good on remembering tidbits of information, but not specifics. Not Robbie Kreiger but John Densmore. Thanks for setting the record straight!
 
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