Why I Love The Current

It’s pledge drive time again at Minnesota Public Radio, which means my default station, 89.3 FM The Current, is full of pleas for cash. But that’s OK because The Current is the best music station ever. When people say radio is dead, they don’t listen to The Current.

I’m not a big fan of pledge drives. I can’t listen when the news side of MPR does their pledge drive. But I can endure it for The Current, mainly because they make it fun. It also helps that I’m a founding and sustaining member, so no guilt.

While listening to their pledge spiel today I started thinking about all the great bands and music I’ve discovered thanks to The Current. Here’s a quick list of music I discovered thanks to The Current (in no particular order):

Arthur Yoria, Arcade Fire, The Postal Service, Ted Leo & the Pharmacists, Death Cab for Cutie, Rilo Kiley, The Magnetic Fields, Pretty Girls Make Graves, Cloud Cult, Sondre Lerche, Mark Mallman, Kaiser Chiefs, The Heavy, Hot Hot Heat, The Raconteurs, Nada Surf, Rainer Maria, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, The Gossip, Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin, Cold War Kids, M.I.A., The Fratellis, Regina Spektor, Bloc Party, The Big Pink, Art Brut, MGMT, Metric, Mumford & Sons, Avett Brothers, Gogol Bordello, Jonsi, Lady Sovereign, Ladyhawke, Lily Allen, The Decemberists, The Rural Alberta Advantage, The Thermals, The New Pornographers, Trampled by Turtles, Apples in Stereo, Ida Maria, Haley Bonar, Mates of State, Rancid, Tilly & the Wall, Tullycraft, Blonde Redhead.

Every band in this list has at least one song in my iTunes that I’ve listened to more than a dozen times (at the bare minimum). In most cases I bought something by this band because I heard it on The Current and liked it. In several cases The Current gave it to me for free (and then I often went on to buy more of it). Some of these are obscure hipster bands, but others are well known bands that I certainly heard about before hearing them on The Current, but I didn’t listen to their music until after hearing them on The Current.

Radio is not dead. Go check out The Current. You can listen online.

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