Wednesday, May 17, 2006


Boomer Bust

Let's talk about a deplorable pop-cultural phenomenon for a moment, shall we? We are almost at the one-year anniversary of the demise of a very important New York City cultural resource---a particularly great loss to those of my blog readers who are also Baby Boomers. (You two know who you are.)

Tell me why it is that New York City cannot support even one oldies station? Boomers used to be the dominant demographic. Now we're chopped liver. Devotees of WCBS-FM now have to stream it on the Internet or shell out $300 for an HD2 radio. Only then can we savor such classic compositions as "Tutti Frutti" and that epitome of the trashy girl-group genre, "My Boyfriend's Back."

I find myself listening more and more to WQXR, the classical music station, which should be uplifting but is, in fact, quite depressing. One is barraged by ads for nursing homes, home health care, cancer cures and, let's not forget, funeral homes. Are we really that decrepit? And is it universally assumed that there is no young audience for classical music?

However, Rock & Roll IS here to stay, at least in academia: My daughter, a second-semester senior at Cornell, could have graduated early but opted instead to take some "fun" courses, including History of Rock Music. There, at least, Elvis lives (but not Jackie Wilson).

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