With quite a few changes coming to our schedule for 2018 we wanted to answer some questions you may have. If you have more questions or would like to share your thoughts, please contact SPR's General Manager Cary Boyce at (800) 328-5729.
Why is KPBX choosing to no longer carry A Prairie Home Companion?
When Garrison Keillor retired and Chris Thile was named to replace him, we thought the program distributor might lower the program’s price – at least temporarily -- to encourage stations to continue airing it. That didn’t happen. In fact, the price increased, twice, while at the same time, the distributor reduced the number of programs it fed to stations. We’ve continued to carry the new A Prairie Home Companion to see how listeners would respond to it. But we’ve found over the last year and a half, far fewer people are listening during the times when the program aired.
There’s one other factor as well: SPR’s annual grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting is going to be 30% less this year. With that in mind, we felt we could no longer justify spending the money to carry the program.
Why did you choose Live Wire and The Moth Radio Hour to replace APHC on Saturday?
We like that both programs have that same ‘live’ feel that A Prairie Home Companion has. Live Wire is hosted by former NPR host Luke Burbank and is based in Portland, so we like that it has a regional tie.
The Moth is a program we’ve long wanted in our schedule. It features people recorded live on stage telling stories about their lives. It’s a popular program around the nation and we are excited to be able to offer it.
How will you replace A Prairie Home Companion on Sunday?
We’re taking advantage of this opportunity to consolidate Dan Maher’s popular Inland Folk program into a three-hour block. When Dan expanded his program from two hours to three a few years ago, we chose not to make the programming changes necessary to accommodate that, so we added the third hour as a stand-alone program on Sunday afternoon. It’s always felt like a bit of an orphan that way, so this allows us to air the program as it’s meant to be aired.
Also, Zan Agzigian (host of Soundspace) has been interested in expanding her program to give her more time to air a broader range of musical artists. She’s excited to have the extra hour.
Finally, to fill the hole we created by consolidating Dan’s program, we went looking for another folk program to keep whole the afternoon folk block. We found a program called Folk Alley from Ohio that we think is a worthy replacement (endorsed by Dan too!).
Why is KSFC moving Native America Calling to the evening?
We felt Native America Calling – with the current host -- is a little too laid back for the 10 am timeslot. We were looking for a program that’s closer to the ‘newsy’ feel of the programs surrounding it, Morning Edition, On Point and The Takeaway. We think Native America Calling is a valuable program and wanted to keep it in our program schedule; we thought it would be a better fit in the evening, at 9 pm. There is one complication with the move: the program would no longer be fed live, which means people from Spokane who call in to Native America Calling would no longer have that option. So we addressed that by scheduling Native America Calling at 10 am on KPBZ (FM 90.3), a station with a more eclectic feel. We think it will be a good fit.
Tell us about the programs that will replace Native America Calling on KSFC.
We discussed a range of options and decided to give more attention to five programs that air on the weekends on KSFC.
- (Monday) On the Media from WNYC in New York is a well-known program that examines media coverage of current issues. It also airs on Saturdays at noon.
- (Tuesday) Reveal is a riveting program from the Center for Investigative Reporting that takes on a wide variety of issues. It also airs Saturdays at 2 pm.
- (Wednesday) The TED Radio Hour is an NPR program that highlights a variety of speakers who have done TED talks around the country. It also airs Sunday mornings at 8.
- (Thursday) Innovation Hub bills itself as a program that “challenges conventional wisdom and showcases creativity in everything from health to the economy.” It also airs Sunday afternoons at 2.
- (Friday) Big Picture Science is a program that uses storytelling to talk about modern science research. We think it will make a nice lead-in to Ira Flatow’s Science Friday program. It also airs Saturday nights at 10.