95.7 Max FM, my local “Jack” station — the mostly automated format that plays a shuffle of popular music from the last four decades or so — was compelling enough to cause me to cancel my satellite radio subscription. I kind of stopped carrying my iPod impulsively too. I just always liked what I heard when I got in the car, and it was easier to let them mix it up than to do it myself.
Right now, the station is broadcasting a computerized voice counting down to Thursday morning, when the station changes format to country. It will be the second country station in the Bay Area. (There are no other Jack stations.)
What broadcast doesn’t understand is that I’m not willing to try its music on its terms any more. There is absolutely and utterly no reason to do so. I have a CD player in the car, for which I can custom-make CDs with any audio content I can find online. I have an iPod adapter in there too, so that I can endlessly stream a week of music that I know I like without a repeat. And if I get bored of that, I can fire up a movie on Apple’s little box and listen to the dialogue while I drive instead.
I am media-saturated. I have digital entertainment at my fingertips. I simply don’t have to take what they’re giving. And if the powers that be don’t realize that, I will laugh all the way to my CD collection.