There are a number of programming changes coming to Tri States Public Radio in the coming weeks. Some of them are decisions made at the station level in response to listener surveys and comments and are designed to best serve our diverse audience. Others were made at the network level, and are out of our control. In those cases, we have tried to do our best to adapt to the programming in the best way possible.
In all cases, we need to hear your feedback on the new schedule. You are the audience we want to serve as well as possible. So here are the changes:
Effective Monday, September 22, Marketplace Morning Report is becoming part of Morning Edition. Even though the shows are from two different networks (APM and NPR) they are joining forces to eliminate duplication of efforts and best use resources to create the best morning show possible. The change that TSPR listeners will hear is the Marketplace Morning Report that was heard at 6:50am and 7:50am will now be heard at 5:50am and 7:50am. At 6:50am and 8:50am you will hear content from NPR’s Morning Edition, including regular features like Frank DeFord’s commentaries on Wednesdays. This change was made at the network level, and we hope this minor change will cause little to no problems for our audience.
Starting on Wednesday, October 1st, you will hear new shows on Tri States Public Radio.
Weeknights at 10pm, we will air a series of symphony orchestra broadcasts from the greatest orchestras around the world. Mondays will be The Chicago Symphony, Tuesdays will be the New York Philharmonic, Wednesdays will be the Pittsburgh Symphony and Thursdays will be the San Francisco Symphony. On Fridays at 10pm, we will continue to broadcast our bilingual classical music program Concierto.
Overnights from midnight to 4am we are switching from classical music to Undercurrents, a freewheeling eclectic music mix of Triple A, Rock, Folk, Blues, Native, Americana, World, Reggae, Dub and Electronica with host Gregg McVicar. The music will be similar to a program TSPR previously carried called World Café. We are going to try this new format overnight for one year to see how it plays with the audience. Please make sure to let us know what you think.
Saturday nights after Jeff Holtz’s program After Hours, we will continue jazz overnight with a new host. Bob Parlocha will be your guide in the overnight hours with lots of great jazz.
Sundays will see our biggest change. After many years of airing opera broadcasts, Tri States Public Radio is going to try new programming to better serve the audience. While there has been a small but loyal audience for opera, it also remains among the least popular of our program offerings, leading many listeners to tune out and not come back. So starting in October, we have a new show coming to TSPR and one returning on Sunday afternoons.
Sunday Baroque will air from Noon to 2pm. Sunday Baroque is a celebration of beloved and appealing music from the baroque era (1600-1750) and the years leading up to it. You’ll hear tuneful and lively music as part of the mix of familiar favorites and new surprises on this weekly radio program. Suzanne Bona, who is also a classically trained flutist, will be your host. We believe this program that comes out of WSHU in Fairfield, CT is a great addition to our classical lineup.
Science Friday with Ira Flatow is coming back to TSPR from 2pm to 4pm on Sundays. Wait, Science FRIDAY on SUNDAY?!?! Yes, the name doesn’t match up, but you’ll find the same great programming that previously aired Friday afternoons as part of Talk of the Nation before NPR canceled that show. Science Friday is your trusted source for news and entertaining stories about science. SciFri is brain fun, for curious people.
Sunday nights we are beefing up our folk music lineup. Folk Weekend with your TSPR host Bill Harroun will now last two hours, going from 7-9pm. American Routes stays on the schedule from 9pm to 11pm. Additionally, overnight will be all folk music with The Midnight Special airing from 11pm to 1am, Folk Alley from 1am to 3am and eTown at 3am before we join Morning Edition at 4am.
That’s a lot of changes. They were motivated by our desire to bring you the best possible programming, and serve the needs of our diverse audience. Please know we remain committed to our mission of delivering news, classical, folk and jazz to the tri states.
Two more changes that are coming up…
Starting Monday, November 17th, NPR is changing its “clocks” for Morning Edition and All Things Considered. Did you know that every public radio program has a clock? Broadcast clocks are set templates that stations like ours use to track the timing of a show's stories and interviews, newscasts, and funding credits each day.
This fall NPR is making some changes to their newsmagazine clocks, in partnership with member stations across the country. This will help align programs with the way people listen to radio today, and provide stations with more flexibility to include the local content that's important to their audiences.
You may not notice a difference at all. Or you may notice that something you were used to hearing at one time is moved a few minutes in one direction or another. NPR did a great deal of national audience research before creating the new clock, so we hope it will serve you better. Nothing is changing about the shows, just some timing. Let us know what you think.
Finally, we regret to inform you that SiriusXM satellite radio has canceled The Bob Edwards Show. That means the PRI program Bob Edwards Weekend is facing new challenges. We are told that the show will go into reruns, and there are no plans for new programs. That likely means a change is in store for us on Sunday mornings starting in January. We haven’t yet evaluated all options, but as with all of our programming decisions, we are interested in hearing what you think.
Again, I know this is a lot. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 309-298-1873. I would be happy to hear from you.
Thank you for listening to Tri States Public Radio.