A resource for music researchers -
American Radio History:
The First Hundred
by Alex Cosper
Read about American Radio History of several
major cities. Learn about how politics and technology influenced radio stations
across America. Many people think about radio's heyday as the freeform era of
the late sixtes or the AM top 40 era of the sixties and seventies. Alternative
radio also stood out as memorable in the 1990s. Playlist Research has researched
the radio dial of these major cities and points out stations that made a huge
impact in their markets.
The major turning points in the history of American radio were FCC regulations
and technological advances that ushered in new eras. For example, in the
1940s the FCC brought clarity and uniformity to the AM dial after years of stations operating
on multiple frequencies. Then in the mid-sixties the FCC made rulings that encouraged
the development of experimental programming on the FM band. By the end of the
seventies new technology made it possible to market FM to the mainstream.
In the 21st century radio is in a completely different world, riddled with
massive debt and uncertainty about the future due to new technology. The main
focus of Playlist Research's report on American radio history is how the medium
rose to greatness throughout the 20th century and was shaped by creativity and
a community spirit.
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