Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Force 925

Due to some unforeseen circumstances (I'm learning a new computer language for work) I won't be posting a new entry to the Periodic Table this weekend. Instead I'll tell you about a corner of the web where you're likely to hear the musicians that are and will be featured here... because you won't find most of them on your local AM or FM stations.

The Force 925 ( is an Internet radio station, newly formed by General Manager Peter "DJ Pied Piper" Allen and Assistant General Manager and Programming Director Julia "Jules" Sherred, aka "Geeky Jules" of the "Geeky Pleasures" radio show. I had an opportunity to talk with Jules this week about the station and what differentiates it from what you normally hear.

Some of these differences aren't the sort of things you'll recognize by ear... you'll still hear DJs patter between songs. You'll still hear periodic station identifications ("The Force... ninety-two five") just as you would with a broadcast station. And you'll still hear a great mix of musical numbers.... and it's in this last bit that you'll start to notice something really different. You might be used to hearing "a Country station" or "an R&B station" or "a Rock-and-Roll station". The Force refuses to be pigeonholed. You'll find all of that here, and some Zydeco, and talk, and eclectic mixes, Japanese pop and God-knows-what-else. You might find something by an artist who's only appeared on YouTube, or in some obscure songwriting competition. The DJs at The Force know what they like and they play what they like, and that's a Good Thing. Says Jules, "The only thing that hinders us is our imaginations."

It's not the Wild West... it's radio done right, where the DJs have quite a bit more creative freedom within their 3 to 5 hour blocks than you'd normally encounter on a broadcast station. The Force currently airs DJs from 4 countries (or 5, depending on how you count them) catering to listeners in 41 countries. It plays on just about anything that will stream an Internet broadcast, so you need look no further than your computer or smartphone for a radio fix.

From that same computer, you might want to log in to The Force's chatroom ( and interact with the DJs during their sets. It's a veritable party some nights. Show up twice, and you'll start getting that same welcoming feeling that Norm gets at the Cheers bar.

Folks, go and visit The Force. Take a look at their schedule and try the shows that interest you. Also try some of the shows that don't interest you right now and see if they don't change your mind. I can't tell you everything because some of the on-air talent also happen to be geek musicians who are likely to appear on this Periodic Table; which is one more reason to check it out. Now. Really, why are you still reading this?

(Sorry about the delay in updates. It's part and parcel of being a computer geek... periodically, the world changes around you and you have to adapt, or become Bob the Dinosaur. Hopefully, I'll be done with the language course soon and get on track with this schedule. I could've rushed it, but really don't want to do that. Thanks for your patience.)

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