WERS rolls

Finally ready to listen to a little radio. I gotta say that it’s pretty freaking hard to beat WERS. “Music for the independent mind.” Yes indeed. I’m not familiar with most of the music they play, but I like a helluva lot, especially since I’m sure I’m 3x the age of many of its programmers and listeners.

Right now it’s Yo La Tengo with “Take Care”. Take care not to hurt yourself. Be ready to ask for help. Thanks for that. Right now it helps. Before that it was Thao with “Bag of Hammers”. David Bowie’s outstanding “THV 15” ran before that. Was that Dr. John on piano? Before that Coldplay with “Speed of Sound”. Now it’s Gnarls Barkley: “Who’s Gonna Save My Soul”. They’ve been playing that one a few times. Deservedly. And now, for geezers like me, Van Morrison with “Caravan“. Radio. Turn it up. So you know. Radio. Takes me back. Keeps me up. From the Moodance album. 1970. Also The Last Waltz. Gives me chills. Progressive rock stations loved to play that song, mostly because it spoke from original dream of radio. What it was, and what it will be again, better than ever. Thanks to WERS for holding the flame high.

Man, this goes on. Now it’s Leonard Cohen with So Long, Marianne”. Another perfect oldie. Followed by Cat Power, “Aretha, Sing One For Me”.

[At this point I got a call from Steve Gillmor, and we recorded a brief impromptu podcast. I’m fading now, and heading for bed. Night, all.]

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29 Responses to WERS rolls

  1. Steve says:

    I read your blog via google reader; sorry to hear of your recent struggles. I just wanted to thank you for the tip on WERS. I’m listening now to raggae on “Rockers”. Nice. I can’t wait to tell my kids about this, I know they will like it too, and I don’t get to impress them much anymore.

    Hope you are feeling better, or that you will soon. Hang in there. Thanks.

  2. Jake says:

    Hey Doc,

    The healing powers of radio waves are underestimated, glad you’re tuning in to some good stuff. Keep meaning to point you to one of my favorite local college radio gems, “Backwoods” on WMBR Saturdays 10 to noon, hosted by the inimitable John Funke:


    Check it out, you’ll dig it. Get better. See you soon.


  3. Doc Searls says:

    Jake, thanks for turning me on to “Backwoods” a few weeks ago. I’ve listened as often as I could, and love it.

    Can’t wait to get back in the saddle.

  4. Tim Jarrett says:

    I’ll definitely check out WERS. Sounds like a good counterpoint to my usual Internet listening, KEXP. You should check out their Thursday evening show, “Swingin’ Doors”–starts at 9 pm Eastern.

    And the Yo La Tengo song is killer. That whole album is really good, actually–“Don’t Have to Be So Sad” is a pretty good theme song for what you’re going through at the moment as well:


  5. Mike Taht says:

    No matter where you go you always leave good tips behind.

    Rock on, dude…

    I hope you enjoy the hell out of your next solid meal. I’d be going to sleep counting hogies at this point.

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  7. Grace Piper says:

    Thanks for turning me onto this station. I’m from Boston and had forgotten how great they are. I hope you get a great night sleep tonight.

  8. Grace Piper says:

    One more thing you might like to listen to Garrison Keiler’s The Writer’s Almanac. Make sure you listen to them and don’t read the post first. It’s more fun that way.

    You can also find it on iTunes under The Writer’s Almanac.

  9. John Tynan says:

    Hey Doc, Glad to hear you’re listening to some healing airwaves! ‘Been rooting for you out here in AZ. Since you’re groovin’ here’s a tape of some music I’ve been liking a lot lately:

  10. Sheila Grady says:

    What are you doing with tubes and ‘tudes? Please lay off the blogging and get well! Would you like your nephews, nieces, and children to hold up the blogosphere while you recover? We have many that can do so (with ease…though may not be on topic will certainly be thought provoking!)

    Stay in bed, sleep, and stop blogging!

  11. Dear Doc, it is so strange that the two people I had such a wonderful Indonesian dinner with on June 3rd in Amsterdam are both in hospital and struggling.

    I am sending you loads of thoughs, good vibes and some of my excess energy!!!

    By the way: we are spreading the VRM-word everywhere in the NL now – a large bank which we are developing a mobile strategy for is absolutely loving it! So hope to be working with you on that soon again!!!

    Warm regards,
    Claire Boonstra

  12. Halley Suitt says:

    Hi Doc … I texted J yesterday to see how you were and she texted ominously back, “notice he’s not blogging” and that was enough to get me way worried, so I’m very glad to see you back in print. Modern medicine needs to add a line on your “vitals chart” there on the clip board at the bottom of your hospital bed … BLOGGING (BLOGGITATUS latin): Active/Passive … as a measure of your well-being.

    As you recount all the rational medical efforts being put forth by the hospital and doctors on your behalf, and their limited, or let’s just say SLOW success rate, I’m ready to ask everyone to get going in the prayer department, whether believers or not, to get you over this thing. You need all the good will and kind thoughts we can send your way. Time to rachet it up.

    I spent a lot of time as a kid sick in hospitals and sick at home, people worrying over me, me floating in and out of the room, and the simple pleasure of a radio playing some rock and roll was good medicine. Rx: 10 tunes in the am, 10 more tunes at lunch, followed by 10 tunes any old time you please. And as for sex, drugs and rock&roll, you’re good for 2 out of 3. Wasn’t Dr. Rageboy going to send over some of those nice volunteer girls in their peppermint stripped pinafores? What are they called again? I’m sure he’ll follow up on that. Whatever, just please get well soon.

  13. Doc Searls says:

    Grace, I’ve long been listening to The Writer’s Almanac, first on radio and now on podcast. The length is perfect for subway rides and walks between here and there on campus.

    In fact, I have a standing request that the music Garrison uses for that show be played at my funeral, which I hope will be far off in the future.

    Still, thanks for the tip. We’re on the same wavelength here. 🙂

  14. Doc Searls says:


    Thanks for your warm energies and for spreading the VRM word in the NL. Please give my love to Maarten, who is going through something much worse than I am.

  15. Doc Searls says:


    Blogging is therapy for me, and doesn’t take much time, really. Much more time is sucked up by stuff like what just happened between the last sentence and this one. Two surgical residents came by to tell me I was doing better and didn’t need them. Good, but not news.

    Anyway, it’s sweet to hear through J that you’d be glad to come. And I’d love to have you here. But I think we’ve turned a corner now. I can see the light at the end of this thing.

  16. Jonas says:

    Wishing you well and thanks for sharing, Doc! Get well soon.

  17. Doc Searls says:

    Thanks, TAR ART RAT. I like KEXP too. Outstanding station. Alas, I can only get it on the Net. Listening now, though. 🙂

  18. Sally Falkow says:

    My thoughts are with you. I’m delighted to hear that you are feeling better. I so understand the irregularity part – have you ever been tested for Candida?

  19. Doc… Get well soon… the better therapy in my opinion is do what you love…

  20. Doc, so glad you’re doing better. I wish I had a station recommendation for you, but I think I’ve gotten most of my favorite stations from you! One station that regularly surprises me, though, is WYMS, aka Radio Milwaukee. Integrates much quality African-American music (classic and contemporary) with indie rock: http://www.radiomilwaukee.org (very nice website, too!)

    Take care of yourself!

  21. Amar says:

    ERS is good. If you get bored and need something new, my alma mater is always a good choice. http://www.wzbc.org. Get well soon Doc!

  22. music heals. Good luck and get better soon (its a purely selfish request, I’d miss your writing and thoughts !!)

  23. Brendan and Joellen says:

    Doc, you’ve been in our thoughts a lot — and it’s really good to hear that you’re feeling better. Keep it up!

  24. Perry says:

    Doc, wishing you strength + effectiveness in medication! You stand very tall, even when you’re curled up in a hospital bed, my friend 😉

    By the way, I love to see you turning to music, there is no better therapy in the world (after family & friends, of course)!

  25. Doc Searls says:

    Brendan & Joellen, great to hear from you.

    And sorry about the Lakers. I think next year things will be a lot different. Especially with Bynum back and after some of the Euros learn how to play better defense.

  26. Brendan and Joellen says:

    Yeah, that was ugly! We’re crossing our fingers for another LA/Boston match-up next year — but with home court advantage for LA. =-)

  27. Boston has got some good radio. I used to listen to ERS all the time, and had a brief ling with one of the DJs, who had the sexiest of voices…and, come to find out, a shared birthday. She turned me on to Henry Cow, Fred Frith, Zorn, David Moss, and that brand of avant-garde strangeness. But that was 20+ years ago. Glad to see they are still playing good music.

    Sorry to hear about your illness. I’d much rather hear about your wellness…and toward that end I will cast my vision.


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