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FROM THIS EPISODE

This is Celia Hirschman with On the Beat for KCRW.

I believe in giving credit, where credit is due. August 31, the owners of New York's weekly newspaper, The Village Voice, fired longtime music critic Robert Christgau. For 37 years, Bob Christgau had been covering music for the Voice, raising the bar of music journalism for all of us to marvel. Love him or hate him, the self-appointed Dean of American Rock Critics brilliantly, reveals his wit and wisdom on the page, with an appetite that rivals any 20 year old blogger, and the mind of a Joycean scholar on speed. Christgau is always entertaining insightful and intrepid. He's never played his audience, avoiding all the trappings of the record business bling with its quid pro quo glad-handing. He is a purist, a street wise intellectual, full of integrity and unapologetic about his findings. Christgau sits along side a couple of other great music critics, most notably Lester Bangs. He'll be sorely missed at the Voice, and I hope we'll be hearing a lot more from him in the future.

In other news, radio station WOXY will be closing its doors. The Cincinnati-based station morphed from a quirky commercial alternative rock station in 1993, to an internet only version in 2004. Though beloved by its loyal fans around the globe, WOXY found it financially difficult to keep the dream alive. Air staff will sign-off on Friday.

On the plus side of the ledger, musicians are finally getting their groove on in New Orleans. Music Rising, a philanthropic organization, formed 9 months ago to help bring live music back to the Delta. They've already dispersed over 2,000 instruments to musicians who lost theirs in Hurricane Katrina. The organization's founding reasoning is strong. They understand that when music plays in New Orleans, everyone will want to be there. That's the kind of support New Orleans needs now.

This week, as the fourth quarter sales opportunities loom in the distance, and record labels hold their breath to see just how 2006 will shake out, new albums hitting the stores now are getting ready for the holiday windup. Look for new CDs this week from John Mayer, the Brazilian Girls, The Rapture, Barenaked Ladies, Mars Volta, Yo La Tengo, Justin Timberlake, Kasey Chambers, Shawn Colvin, The Black Keys, Citizen Cope and many others. In fact, do something revolutionary. Visit your local record store.

This is Celia Hirschman with On the Beat for KCRW.


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