Message From Shadow

One of the most common questions I am asked is, “So, what are you listening to?” Shadow Radio represents the best answer I could ever give. Music makes its way to me (as it probably does to you) in so many ways…through scavenging, promo mailings, hand-to-hand, on the advice of friends. I totally disregard any sense of “shelf-life,” that is, the hipster mentality of “been there, done that, on to the next.” I’m just as likely to be into crunk music 10 years from now as I am to be discovering European DIY stuff 30 years on. Once a form of music gets into my DNA, it’s there for life, be it hyphy, funk, or garage rock. Everyone else has moved on to this musical horizon over there? That’s fine, I’ll discover it on my own time, and with my own filter, rather than because that’s what I’m “supposed to be listening to.” Hip-hop will always be my first love, and it’s the Bambaataa aesthetic that still shapes my musical life: “listen to the music that was not necessarily intended for you.” Sometimes I’m the first to the party, sometimes the last. Such is the vastness of music.

While I do expend a lot of effort to seek unheard music, Shadow Radio is NOT about, “look at me and my fancy record collection.” It’s not about rarity, value, or prestige, it’s about finding music from the past and present that helps speak to my (our) experiences and how to cope with them; circumstantially, there are lost classics and unknowns in equal measure. Music has shaped me socially, politically, emotionally, and spiritually. In every real sense, music has “saved me.” I consider it a great honor and responsibility to share the power of music with as many others as possible; it’s why I became a DJ. I LOVE exposing genius to the weary, cynical ears of friends, peers, and the public at large. When it comes down to it, what we all seek from music is TRUTH, not packaged, pre-fab fast food for the brain and soul. Consider Shadow Radio, then, to be the antidote, a placeholder for much better things to come as musicians emerge from the current cultural wasteland to inspire us once more.

Oh, one last note: I detest irony in music, and as such, none of my selections are “ironic.” You can be sure that if it appears on Shadow Radio, it is a full-fledged endorsement of the artist’s vision, even if selected in jest, or in a context probably not originally intended. Without the occasional chuckle, music would be dull indeed…and as such, I feel that even unintentional humor is cause for celebration, and is a worthy component of our shared musical experiences.

Enjoy the sounds!

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Welcome! Choose which 60-minute program you would like to listen to. You can always pause, rewind, or fast-forward as desired. Enjoy the music!

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A Day Without Your Love

Show contributed by Bob Abrahamian on Oct 25, 2010

Emotional, other-worldly soul sounds culled from the files of Chicago's Bob Abrahamian, vocal group collector extraordinaire. Ice-cold reality from the likes of Force of Habit, the Color Us People Band, Depths of Love, and more. If you like what you hear (and you should), check out more at sittinginthepark.com

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The Audio Arms Race

Show contributed by John Haupt on Apr 26, 2010

Continuing on our mission to expand the palates of music lovers everywhere, we present selections from the refined mind of OPM Records' John Haupt. This is the sound of the NWOAHM (New Wave Of American Heavy Metal), including the likes of Dead Silence, Euphoria, Minotaur, and many others.

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Seoul Know How To Make Music

Show contributed by DJ Shadow on Apr 20, 2010

South Korea is cool. The people there have their own unique style, attitude, and perspectives, as evidenced herein. Rugged sounds from the likes of Cherry Parade, The Last Chance, and others; I fully expect to see Kim Yu-Na skating to one of these selections in her next routine!