On finding good shows/podcasts on NPR stations … Stitcher SmartRadio is a good answer

Why do I use Stitcher SmartRadio instead of just subscribing to the podcast? Simple. It’s easy to find what I know I want and it also shows me other podcasts that I might want to hear.

We live in an age where amount of material to listen to is like the overflowing fruit from a cornucopia … it almost threatens to drown us. The number of shows alone on NPR stations is just overwhelming. I’m always behind in listening to shows and podcasts that I know that I like, much less trying to find new shows/podcasts to try out.

If you have a Sonos system (and that’s another posting in itself), you may want to try out Stitcher, downloading it as an app within Sonos. You can also download the Stitcher app for iPhones or iPads … or for Android devices. (Or you can try Stitcher on your Mac or PC by going to http://www.stitcher.com)

Once you have Stitcher, what do you do with it? It’s organization is great, with three main heading Stations, Sources, and Favorites. Stations, though, really isn’t radio stations. It’s a set of shows/podcasts.

The subheadings are Popular & Trending, New & Noteworthy, Comedy, Business & Industry, etc.

The Popular & Trending then has three subheadings: Top Shows, Top Movers, Most Shared

The Top Shows then gets you down to the actual shows and podcasts: Stuff You Should Know, Marketplace on Stitcher, Radiolab from WYNC, etc …

By the time you see the shows/podcast you want to hear you’ll probably see a lot of other ones you may want to try out. Just don’t drown in the thousands of shows/podcasts that are available!

Wonderings about the growth of NPR radio stations in Virginia?

Why have the number of public radio stations grown explosively over the past year or two in Virginia?

One of the mysteries of life is that Harrisonburg, VA now has six NPR stations (88.1, 88.5, 89.3, 90.7, 91.1, and 91.7) while the DC area still only has two (WAMU and WETA).  And it’s not just Harrisonburg, either. Fredericksburg has four NPR stations and Charlottesville has six plus one other public radio station (WTJU) that isn’t formally an NPR station.

What is going on? Is there a collapse of commercial FM radio and a freeing of FM frequencies so that public radio is filling a vacuum?

It is obvious that some of the stations are so-called repeater stations. For example, I think that Virginia Tech (WVTF) has been expanding its stations into under the WVTW call sign, while its expansion into Fredericksburg and Harrisonburg has been using its original call sign, WVTF.  In any case, I would guess that VA Tech takes real pleasure in penetrating into Cavalier territory.

But why now?

A list of the call letters and frequencies is below for the three cities mentioned follows:

1430 – WTJU

88.3 – WVTF – RADIO IQ
88.5 – WAMU
89.5 – WYAU

88.1 – RADIO IQ
89.3 – WVTF
90.7 – WMRA
91.1 – WTJU
91.7 – WEMC

88.5 – WVTW
89.3 – WVTU

89.7 – WVTW

91.1 – WTJU

96.7 – WVTW

101.1 – WVTU

103.5 – WMRY