Music discovery is a crowded field these days, with digital services like Spotify and Pandora directing much of their marketing dollars to waving the flag of their recommendation platforms. But increasingly, the old gatekeepers of public radio are flexing their muscles to remind listeners that curation is still best achieved by word of mouth -- or airwave, as the case may be.
Last year, six public radio stations -- KCRW in Los Angeles, KEXP in Seattle, KTBG The Bridge in Kansas City, KUTX in Austin, WFUV in New York City and WXPN in Philadelphia -- banded together with funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to launch VuHaus, a digital video streaming platform that exists both on web and as an app that hand-curates and highlights performances, interviews and events conducted by its member stations, all in one place.
"The public radio stations in VuHaus have been at the vanguard of music discovery for decades, taking risks and investing in the careers of unknown musicians and spinning their records when no one else was paying attention," WXPN general manager Roger LaMay said in a statement. "Our stations are constantly working to uncover the best new talent, regardless of commercial appeal."