Skip to comments.WAMU Seeks New Owner for Bluegrass Country
Posted on 08/21/2016 7:07:02 PM PDT by HokieMom
WAMUs Bluegrass Country History and Origins
From 1967 through today, WAMU has been a proud supporter of bluegrass music and its culture, which has been part of the Washington region for many years. A large migration from Appalachia occurred during the 1940s, making Washington the capital of a blossoming bluegrass music scene. Bluegrass became a defining sound for many in the area and, by the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, was a hotbed for musicians such as Buzz Busby, Leon Morris, The Country Gentlemen, and later, the Seldom Scene and Johnson Mountain Boys.
Bluegrass music had a limited presence on commercial radio so hosts and ethnomusicologists Gary Henderson and Dick Spottswood approached WAMU with a proposal for a half-hour educational bluegrass show. Bluegrass Unlimited debuted on July 3, 1967.
In addition to Spottswood and Henderson, WAMUs bluegrass hosts and producers over the years have included well-respected broadcasters, musicians, authors, and ethnomusicologists who specialize in bluegrass and roots music: Eddie Stubbs, Jerry Gray, Ray Davis, Katy Daley, and Lee Michael Demsey.
From 1967 through the 70s and 80s, generous support from the bluegrass community allowed WAMU to expand. Today, WAMUs Bluegrass Country is a 24/7 bluegrass music service broadcasting at 105.5 FM, HD on 88.5-2, and streaming on bluegrasscountry.org. Bluegrass Countrys social media includes a YouTube channel with over 4.4 million views.
Whats Happening and Why?
During the last 20 years, the Washington area has once again undergone tremendous demographic shifts attracting millions of new residents. WAMU has seen listenership to the main news station steadily increase, making it one of the most-listened-to radio stations in the Washington, D.C. market.
To clarify and further understand this shift in demographics, WAMU commissioned a study from an independent media strategic consulting company to develop a five-year strategic plan.
Nothing like bluegrass by a firepit with a beer and a cigar.
Start taping what you can of the station.
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