5.16.2008

The Bryant Park Project, One Of The Best Radio Shows Your Probably NOT Listening To

National Public Radio's, The Bryant Park Project, is one of the best radio shows that your probably not listening to.

Admittedly, I probably skew the demographic of this program. I'm a Forty-Something, frequent NPR listener who gets most of my news from Print, NPR, PBS, then the Internet.

What is the Bryant Park Project (BPP)? The BPP, which takes its title from new studios overlooking the park, is the latest NPR News series debuting as a two-hour live weekday show Oct. 1, 2007. As they describe themselves on their blog, they are a; "blog, radio show, podcast and ongoing discussion of the news".

From an October article at Current.org:

The producers of Bryant Park want to discover how to engage Gen-X listeners and others whose cultural reference points and news diets differ from those of core listeners to NPR’s flagship Morning Edition.

“We want this show to be about our lives,” said 31-year-old co-host Luke Burbank.

BPP, as co-hosted mixes big doses of levity with a news sensibility favoring alternate takes on the day’s top stories. The show is meant to appeal to a younger, less-traditional NPR audience. Reoccurring segments include a Monday morning sports wrap-up featuring Bill Wolff, a Tuesday section on new music releases, and frequent interviews with various musicians and performers including Tegan and Sara, Peter Bjorn and John, Jill Sobule, and Death Cab For Cutie. “The Most” lists the top e-mailed articles on the Web.

The show features an occasional segment called "Make Me Care" in which guests have 60 seconds to argue why a subject should matter to listeners. On Thursday's "Make Me Care" Alexis Madrigal of Wired.com, attempted to describe why we should care about NASA's recent discovery of an object in our Galaxy astronomers have been hunting for more than 50 years.

Luke BurbankThe tone is often informal compared to the more conventional content found in other NPR news magazines. This is what makes it truly unique. It's web site features the typical NPR story-by-story rundown, but it also has a frequently updated blog (which today featured the BBQ and beer lunch they had ordered)

I've added RSS podcast feed for it's podcasts into my netvibes page. The podcasts can also be subscribed to for free at iTunes. I've also added BPP to my Twitter list. They typically send breezy, chatty, gossipy twitters that are fun to read. The other day they were complaining how bad the sound was on the Death Cab For Cutie in-studio performance.

It's not your father's NPR (i.e. mine) but it's fun, often informative and I believe, a glimpse into the way most main-stream radio, TV or magazines will broadcast themselves. Utilizing the full range of WEB 2.0 technology and spreading their RSS seed blog to blog, social network to social network.

It's only on a very few NPR stations and Sirius Satellite Radio. It's blog is here. Their podcast is here. Their radio show is here. You can read and follow their Twitter feed here. Feel free, while on Twitter to add my feed if you like. I'm here.

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