I think all of us can agree that the current state of rock radio (terrestrial) is tragic. There are a hundred reasons why that is (no need to beat those dead horses), but the bottom line is, for those of us who like -- for a lack of a better term -- "classic rock" -- the pickings are slim.
I have lived on both coasts over the past 20 years and listened to a lot of rock 'n' roll radio during that time. Somewhere along the way it became homogenized and sterilized. It was the same thing wherever you went. Same play lists. Same bands. Same songs. You know the drill. No depth. No imagination.
But here's where I think they're really went off the rail: There's nothing wrong (for the most part) with the artists they choose to play. But many of these bands are still (and have been) recording and performing for the past 20 years. But these program directors choose to ignore it. It's like time stood still for them in 1988 or something.
Take Deep Purple for example. Turn on any classic rock station in North America and you're bound to hear "Smoke on the Water," "Hush," or "Woman from Tokyo." But in the '90s and 2000s the band has produced some of its best work... but you'd never know listening to "classic rock" radio.
If these stations don't want to play selections from an artist's entire canon of work, and only stuff from a couple of decades ago, doesn't that really make them an "Oldies" station? A true "classic rock" station would play songs from "classic rock" artists regardless of when the song was produced.
What are some of the bands you feel fall into this category? Who do you think is still making great music, but the "classic rock" stations ignore?
Besides Deep Purple, here are some of my gripes:
Blue Oyster Cult (Their last two - Heaven Forbid and Curse of the Broke Mirror - were outstanding. Still recording, still touring. But no radio except for "Don't Fear the Reaper," Godzilla," and "Burnin' For You.")
Alice Cooper (The guy doesn't quit. And he's made a lot of cool records over the past 15 years. Radio doesn't care.)
UFO (Last three albums have been great. Just released "The Visitor" and 1998's "Walk on Water" was one of their best! But no radio play.)
Uriah Heep (Their recently released "Wake the Sleeper," was a huge hit... in Europe. Won all kinds of accolades. But they can't tour the U.S. because there's no promotion, no radio support.)
ZZ Top (A true "classic rock" radio darling. As long is the song was made before 1985. But in the past 10 years, they've made "Rhythmeen," "XXX" and "Mescalero" and all of them excellent, with radio-friendly songs.)
Who else do you think "classic rock" radio programmers have turned their backs on?
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