Tuesday May 10, 2005
[Contributed by Potato Head]
I see Ed Bell dropped by here yesterday to check the spelling. Okay, then, let’s talk about WLRN [91.3 on FM the radio dial]. I’ve very little experience with public radio outside S. Florida, but WLRN seems to do a decent job. It seems like we should be able to muster a national-caliber show like This American Life, but I guess it’s not meant to be. What we have is Ed’s worthy arts show (where “arts” seems to mean mostly performing arts), and Joseph Cooper’s Tropical Currents.
A local public radio show, Tropical Currents ought to be the most boring of all possible experiences. And Cooper is nobody’s idea of a dynamic radio personality. But. Somehow. It’s magic.
Joseph Cooper is an utterly ordinary, if pretty smart, guy. He seems to make no particular effort to “entertain.” (Actually, these are both just my impressions; it could all be part of the act.) That’s what makes him so riveting on the radio. The Diane Rhem Show has endless intelligent callers; it’s a national show. Joseph has a much smaller pool of callers to deal with, and some real characters (and idiots) get through. He deals with them with delicious, barely disguised, contempt. You can actually hear him sigh on the radio.
Mostly, though, he’s just a regular dude. He cares about the environment. He doesn’t like big business pushing people around. He’s reasonable for miles and miles. But he sounds like a reasonable guy sitting at the next bar stool, not like a reasonable guy on the radio. (Kind of like Tom Snyder.)
[Mp3 downloads of Cooper’s show are available online (nice; most NPR stuff is available in RealAudio only). How about adding an RSS feed for podcasting, WLRN? How about keeping more then four recent shows online for download? And, for the love of sweet Jesus, how about an actual schedule of upcoming shows? Please don’t tell us Joe flies by the seat of his pants??]comments powered by Disqus