Playing to its strengths and folky roots, WXPN (88.5 FM) launched a new “Singer Songwriter Radio” stream this morning, available for listening on line at xpn2.org and also broadcast to digital HD Radios as 88.5-2.
Supplanting what had been an alt-rock stream (originally called Y-Rock), the new xpn2 aims to be your go-to place for artists like Mumford and Sons, Lumineers and the Avett Brothers who’ve grown huge in the last year, thanks in part to their embrace by style-diversifying teen pop stations like Philly’s Q 102 (Jeez, Ed Sheeran even showed up at the Jingle Ball).
Of course, more seasoned singers/guitar strummers (think Jackson Browne, Joni Mitchell, Bright Eyes, Ryan Adams and Steve Earle) also are in the mix.
Singer-Songwriter Radio will time shift the XPN staple “World Café” weeknights from 7 to 9 p.m. and deliver “Mountain Stage" on Saturdays at 11 a.m. One prior streaming show – Fred Knittel’s “Folkadelphia” - will be slotted Sunday from 3 to 5 p.m . with a rebroadcast Monday from 9 to 11 p.m. A four hour block of the folk music service Folk Alley hosted by XPN’s legendary Gene Shay takes over Sunday afternoons from noon to 4 p.m.
With the relaunch, this internet radio listener hopes WXPN will give more attention to delivering song information and album art along with the music, as already pops up with some competing services like KCRW Eclectic 24. (You do get song/artist info via HD Radio displays). And when I connected this morning through the dominant Tune-In radio aggregator service, the XPN2 stream suffered some unfortunate drop out signal glitches.