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Published on July 27th, 2018 | by Alan Cross

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The Ongoing History of New Music encore presentation: The Inventors

Every walk of life has its stars, the famous people who get all the attention.

In business, it’s the CEOs. In sports, it’s the quarterback, the homerun-hitter, the big goal scorer. When it comes to movies it’s the actors and, to some extent, the directors. And in music, it’s the musicians and singers.

But if we’re honest, these people are just the faces of their respective industries and pursuits. Some have real power and influence while others are just figureheads and puppets.

Whatever the case, this one thing is true: Behind them are armies of people who make it possible for them to do what they do–and for the fame they achieve.

And here’s the sad part: While the star CEO or big-time frontperson get all the glory and all the money, chances are there’s a little guy (or woman) deep in the background who’s not getting any credit, even though without this person, the other people wouldn’t be so rich and famous.

Let me give you an example. There’s a very good chance that you’re going to listen to this program on an FM radio. This form of communication was invented by Edwin Howard Armstrong back in 1933. But then the mighty RCA corporation launched a specious legal action against Armstrong over his patents. In the end, Armstrong lost control of his invention and penniless and depressed, he jumped out of a 13th floor window.

That’s the kind of stuff I explore on this program: The people deep, deep, deep behind the music. People without whom rock as we know it would be very different because they invented something really, really cool. They just never got the credit. Let’s fix that.

Songs on this program

Todd Snider, Vinyl Records

Les Paul, Meet Mr. Calaghan

Icky Thump, White Stripes

Marty Ronnins, Don’t Worry About Me

Radiohead, Bodysnatchers

Kinks, You Really Got Me

Jane’s Addiction, Mountain Song

Hugh Le Caine, Dripsody

Nine Inch Nails, Closer

SSQ, Walkman On

Screeching Weasel, Compact Disc

Suzanne Vega, Tom’s Diner

And here’s a playlist created by Eric Wilhite

Don’t forget that you can get the podcast version of this podcast through iTunes or wherever you get your on-demand audio.

The Ongoing History of New Music can be heard on the following stations:

We’re still looking for more affiliates in Calgary, Kamloops, Kelowna, Regina, Saskatoon, Brandon, Windsor,  Montreal, Charlottetown, Moncton, Fredericton, and St John’s and anywhere else with a transmitter. If you’re in any of those markets and you want the show, lemme know and I’ll see what I can do.




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About the Author

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.


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