WMNR's Garrett Stack
My love of popular music goes back to my early boyhood and to the radio that was a constant companion in our house and car and on the beach, thanks to my mother. As a teen I couldn’t get enough of weekly countdowns on WABC with Cousin Brucie, Peter Tripp on WMGM and Richard Ward Fatherly on WICC.
The fascination with rock, pop and soul continued into the 70s when I became a jukebox programmer in New Haven, CT. It was so cool to actually open jukeboxes, place records in the slots, insert new title labels, watch the mechanical parts all work together and hear the music. The dream job.
The coin-operated jukebox was invented in the late 1930s and enjoyed its heyday in the 1940s through the 1970s. Starting out with just 24 selections (12 78-RPM records), jukeboxes eventually had 200 choices (100 45-RPM records). With the advent of the compact disc in the 1980s, jukeboxes became bloated with thousands of selections and to me, lost their appeal. Since jukeboxes play the nearest song to the one “now playing” on the playlist, and not in the order they were selected, with thousands of choices your song might take hours to come around – long after you’ve left.
Today in many bars, like The Hideaway Inn in Catskill, NY, the jukebox has been replaced by a link to a server in “the cloud.” For a considerable price you can hear virtually any song in the world. Once selected, the song becomes part of that bar’s playlist and is available later at a reduced price. For more click here
Garrett returns on May 16. Before then John Babina and Parker Prout fill in on American Jukebox on May 2 and Bill Stine on Broadway Bound on May 9.
Jenny O'Grady in Memoriam
for Tribute video click here
WMNR Fine Arts Radio is saddened to share the news that after a long illness, former broadcaster Jenny O'Grady passed away last month. Described by Jane Stadler, Operations Director, as "one of the sweetest people I've ever known," Jenny was dedicated to Saturday Morning Classics since joining the station in 1982. Despite the unpredictable Connecticut weather, she rarely missed a broadcast and was often accompanied by her dog Bear or her granddaughter Jenna.
Jenny joined the station after responding to an on-air request for volunteers and very quickly assumed the Saturday 6:00 am time slot. As a serious student of ballet as a girl, she later became known for the "Ballet Hour" of her program which she described as "fairy tales, coming from childhood when my artist father had classical music playing constantly to accompany his paintings and my sister and I would act out the ballets." Said Jenny of WMNR, "You can hear this music lots of other places, but it is our personal perspective in presenting it that makes the difference. I hope we never get so big that we lose that intimate appeal. For me it is a chance to share the best part of myself and the music I love." Jenny and her love of music and dance will be truly missed by many, many friends and colleagues here at WMNR.
WMNR Streaming on Demand
Four WMNR broadcasts share some of their programs for listening to on demand on the internet. Will Duchon of Friday Evening Classics offers his programs The Night Café and Words & Music, as does H. William Stine of Turntable for One. Also Garrett Stack of Broadway Bound and American Jukebox is also archiving his programs after they air and making them available to listeners. They join Jay Harris who put 19 of his One Great Song programs available. Haven't yet tried listening yet? It's simply a recording of a radio program, archived on the internet, available for listening anytime you are online. These three fantastic WMNR broadcasters all stream their programs at Public Radio Exchange, found at prx.org.