Saturday, May 22, 2010


When was the last time you wrote to your elected representative to lobby them on behalf of some worthy cause? I remember the last time I did. But it wasn’t for the sake of the Burmese monks being oppressed by the military junta in that country (If you haven’t already, please join their Facebook page immediately). It was actually to save BBC 6 from extinction!

For those of you who aren’t in the know, you are probably not a music geek like myself (or a muso, as they say across the pond). After all, this is only the greatest radio station in the world that, due to hard times at the Beeb, is facing cancellation. I’ve been listening to it for a couple of years now, and I can honestly say that for sheer listening pleasure, there’s nothing like it. Among the many legends that have been hosts of their own show on 6: The late Joe Strummer, Don Letts (The Clash videographer & reggae impresario), Jarvis Cocker (ex-Pulp front man), Guy Garvey (lead singer of Elbow), just to name a few! And the best part is, thanks to the miracle of the inter-web, it’s available to everyone absolutely free of charge and commercial free, so there’s no reason to listen to that Top 40’s Clear Channel crap ever again! 6 also does truly outstanding documentaries on everything from illegal downloads to the late Malcolm McLaren (God rest his smutty soul). Actually, they often do a better job of covering the Canadian music scene than a lot of Canadian media do. This would be a truly great loss to serious music fans everywhere. So send those e-mails, toute suite!(

Why the BBC as an organization should give a damn what some unemployed wastrel living in Canada thinks about their programming, is beyond me. It’s not as if I pay for it through my taxes, like the Brits do. Yet, the Beeb has no shortage of fans all over the world and the scope of their mandate has always been international, to some extent. Just listen to the BBC World Service, as countless people do everyday, and you’ll see why this program is the gold standard for international news. No show is more comprehensive or thorough in their reporting. Maybe that’s why we love them so much. They don’t just provide a British take on current affairs; they also try to reflect the opinions of those affected by those events.

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