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  1. #1
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    KFUO Classic 99 is no more

    It was a sad day in St. Louis - the only classical music FM station in St. Louis signed off last night. The radio station was sold and is now a contemporary Christian music station.

    Locals who had followed the news knew this was coming for the past year or so. Classic 99 had been owned by the Missouri Synod of the Lutheran Church for many, many years but they made a decision to sell the station and put their money elsewhere. The story has a number of factors that raised eyebrows for those watching the process but the net result is the broadcast of classical music over the airwaves in St. Louis is no more.

    It was kind of like watching them tear down your favorite local restaurant so another McDonald's could go in the spot.

    KFUO - RIP 7/6/10

  2. #2
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    It was worse than that, I can't even think of a good analogy. They kept Classical music alive and more importantly educated people to all things Classical music. The majority of my Classical collection is attributed to the station. The loss of KFUO for me is like hearing a species of endangered animal just went extinct. It will leave a real void.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody
    It was worse than that, I can't even think of a good analogy. They kept Classical music alive and more importantly educated people to all things Classical music. The majority of my Classical collection is attributed to the station. The loss of KFUO for me is like hearing a species of endangered animal just went extinct. It will leave a real void.

    My local NPR station does classical during the weekday (news on the hour). Anything like that available there ?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevlarus
    My local NPR station does classical during the weekday (news on the hour). Anything like that available there ?
    The local NPR affiliate in St. Louis (KWMU, 90.7) does not offer FM broadcast music, classical or otherwise. They have just started an HD channel that is strictly classical, but that is only available to those with an HD receiver or in a position to pick up the internet stream.

    So, for those of us who happen to enjoy classical music as we drive and don't have a Sirius or HD receiver, the only answer now is to bring your own on CD.

  5. #5
    3LB
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    Is it a contemporary christian format or is it the dreaded praise format? I liked a handful of CC pop and rock bands about 10 or so years ago. There was a local CC station that played a wide variety of styles, but it eventually was retooled for praise format, which ironically enough, I find to be artistically bankrupt, spiritually unengaging and downright cultish.

    Praise music is a handful of church service songs, redundantly performed by several soundalike acts who modestly and politely invite you to "raise up your voices to the Lord", but would actually shit their pants if anyone sang above a normal speaking voice.
    Repost this on your wall if you love Jesus.

  6. #6
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3LB
    Is it a contemporary christian format or is it the dreaded praise format? I liked a handful of CC pop and rock bands about 10 or so years ago. There was a local CC station that played a wide variety of styles, but it eventually was retooled for praise format, which ironically enough, I find to be artistically bankrupt, spiritually unengaging and downright cultish.

    Praise music is a handful of church service songs, redundantly performed by several soundalike acts who modestly and politely invite you to "raise up your voices to the Lord", but would actually shit their pants if anyone sang above a normal speaking voice.
    Wow, this description of a praise and worship team does not sound like the one at my church at all. Neither does this description of praise music. Our praise team is made up of some of the finest voices in the music department, and these people can sing the paint off the walls. They sing a very accurate four part harmony(very jazzy Manahattan Transfer style on occasion) and the music they sing is very high energy gospel/praise style of worship music. Next to hearing the great 15 piece band, and the 130 voice choir sing, the praise and worship period is the most energetic portion of our service.

    I gave up listening to over the air radio when I started finding a lot of classic music station on the internet. The idea that I could listen to WGHB in Boston while living in Los Angeles, Orlando or the Bay Area was amazing to me.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3LB
    Is it a contemporary christian format or is it the dreaded praise format?
    The new station (JOY FM) describes themselves as contemporary Christian. (Actually, it is not a "new" station as they had been broadcasting locally on a couple of lower power transmitters for some years. They just bought the 100,000 watt 99.1 station when it came up for sale.)

    I try remember there is an enormously wide variety of music in terms of what people like, but I find all of the CCM I've heard to date rather banal and formulaic. My taste in liturgical music is more in the classical style. Give me Bach or Tallis any day of the week.

    And it's not that I'm just a classical longhair. I happen to love a very eclectic range of music ranging from jazz, r&b, to pop and rock as well as the classics.

  8. #8
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    Wow, that's a huge loss considering that the St. Louis Symphony is a world class orchestra, and probably greatly benefits from having a classical station available to promote their activities.

    This type of contraction has been ongoing for years on the jazz front. I don't think there are any commercial jazz stations (aside from "smooth" and even those are dying off now that Clear Channel has basically abandoned the format) left in the major markets. All you got left to fill the gap are college and public radio stations, and many of those are going strong.

    Classical has always had the benefit of tremendous foundation support, which helps fund a lot of the programs on classical stations. Would not surprise me to see a public radio station in the market step into the fray. There's a lot of foundation money and well heeled donors that would accompany a station switching over to classical.

    San Francisco still has a commercial classical station, which probably won't go away anytime soon because it's one of the highest rated FM stations in this market. But, the drawback of a commercial station for classical, compared to a public radio station, is that they play a LOT of the same old stuff and seem content with programming a lot of music blocks with "relaxation" music.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mlsstl
    The local NPR affiliate in St. Louis (KWMU, 90.7) does not offer FM broadcast music, classical or otherwise. They have just started an HD channel that is strictly classical, but that is only available to those with an HD receiver or in a position to pick up the internet stream.

    So, for those of us who happen to enjoy classical music as we drive and don't have a Sirius or HD receiver, the only answer now is to bring your own on CD.
    I thought KWMU offered Jazz on Friday nights? At lease they use to years ago.....now I think its only on Sanday evenings.
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  10. #10
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3LB
    Is it a contemporary christian format or is it the dreaded praise format? I liked a handful of CC pop and rock bands about 10 or so years ago. There was a local CC station that played a wide variety of styles, but it eventually was retooled for praise format, which ironically enough, I find to be artistically bankrupt, spiritually unengaging and downright cultish.

    Praise music is a handful of church service songs, redundantly performed by several soundalike acts who modestly and politely invite you to "raise up your voices to the Lord", but would actually shit their pants if anyone sang above a normal speaking voice.
    I have always enjoyed the classical varieties of religiously inspired music -- from Gregorian Chant to Arvo Pärt or John Tavener. However whether CC or Praise, the popular "Christian" radio format -- or indeed any religion's fromat -- makes me, as an atheist, want to barf.

    On the other hand considering this scary Christian religiousity does make Muslim fundamentalism a lot more comprehensible, (and I might add, at times relatively attractive by comparison).

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