Wednesday, October 21, 2009

WSIG: Real Country Radio

If you're tooling up US route 81 near Woodstock, Virginia, then I suggest you tune to WSIG, 96.9, Real Country Radio. They entertained me for nearly an hour with one marvelous song after another. You can listen to them on the web also: click their web site and then click the big “listen live” button. (It may take 15 seconds or so for the audio to come.)

I've sampled many country Western stations on my trips south. I haven't listened to a lot of WSIG's programming yet, but what I heard was – for me at least – exceptional. To an outsider, the lyrics of Country Western songs tend to sound banal, even though, often, they are not. The essence of CW music is that the music fits the lyrics like a glove, making every syllable seem obvious the moment you hear it. CW is a remarkable contrast to Rock, which forces its words to fit the heavy rhythms, and Blues, which often disassociates the lyrics from the rhythm altogether.

In CW, the male singers tend to sound like suave cowboys, and the women tend to sound desperate. There's a lot more variety than you may notice at first. I enjoyed one song in which the chorus was a solo on a bass guitar, with a finishing lick on a 12-stringer.
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