Inspiration

On this page you’ll find links and references to some of our favourite programmes, texts, stations and artist’s projects, which we hope will provide some inspiration for your own programmes.

Programmes

For some great examples of how academic research can be translated into exciting radio, have a listen to a selection of our favourite programmes:

88 Keys is short programme made by producer Esther Johnson that was commissioned by In the Dark Radio, and is a beautiful and melancholic reflection on the disposal of pianos

99% Invisible is a series of entertaining programmes that investigate how design and architecture shape our world

Atomic Radio is an imaginative series of programmes made by artist and doctoral researcher Emily Candela, which considers the relationship between the arts and the science of X-ray crystallography. It shows how even research that doesn’t instantly seems to be an easy topic for radio can make the most exciting programmes

The Fancy Shape, episode 160: 99% Invisible is a great radio programme exploring the cultural significance of the quatrefoil shape, showing ways that visual research can be brought to life through audio

The Far From Home Show, episode 163: Re:sound tells the tales of those who are far away from the place they call home. Its sensitive layering of sounds and stories shows how texture can be created to animate interviews and readings

Paperweight is a radio series created by academic Juliette Kristensen, which sits alongside the publication Paperweight: A Newspaper of Visual and Material Culture. The radio series is a vibrant, intelligent and accessible showcase for exciting research across the arts and humanities

Pod Academy offers an extensive archive of podcasts based on academic research aimed at sharing rigorous scholarship with a non-specialist audience

Professor Les Back lets the ideas shine in his low-fi reflections on academic research in Postcards from a Sabbatical

Radiolab is a popular series of engaging documentary programmes devoted to illuminating science, philosophy and the human experience

The Thread is an informal discussion programme that brings together artists, academics, scientists and more for interdisciplinary and experimental debate. Produced and presented by postgraduate students from the London Consortium , while covering numerous topics from Bollywood to zombies the series investigates whether radio can be a tool for live research

The Vox Lab documents researcher and poet James Wilkes’ residency at UCL’s Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience. The project brought together neuroscientists, writers and academics to explore voices and bodies, misheard lyrics, talking animals, memory and laughter, among other topics

Stations

Bored of the BBC? Why not explore our selection of alternative radio stations:

Clocktower Radio is the station of New York based Clocktower Productions, which has an amazing collection of pioneering art radio programmes

NTS-Dalston is a new web-based radio station based in London

Radio Alice took a Dada inspired approach to radio broadcast, conceiving of its transmissions as immediate cultural subversions. The station, which broadcast from Bologna, Italy from 1973-1977, was associated with the Autonomist left wing political movement, and sent out a flow of sounds, information, messages and poetry, silences and abuse. While Radio Alice has been out of action for almost forty years, an informative interview with Marxist activist and theorist Franco “Bifo” Berardi which reflects on the station’s activities can be found here

Radio Anti is a discontinuous FM and online radio station with an incendiary approach. Follow the station on Twitter to be in the know about their next explosion of activity

Radio Gorgeous is a station created by and for bold, intelligent and vibrant women

Resonance 104.4FM is London’s non-profit arts radio station available as FM in London and online elsewhere

UbuWeb Radio Stream is the radio stream of the ultimate archive of avant-garde art online

Radio on radio

The following online selection of projects and programmes use the audial possibilities of radio to reflect on radio and sound itself:

David Blandy, Radio Nights is a documentary investigating the invisible world of the listeners and broadcasters of West London’s rich radio culture

John Cheever’s The Enormous Radio: read by Nathan Englander is a radio adaptation of a short story that reflects on the domination of technology, which was adapted for The New Yorker Fiction Podcast. Written in 1947, the tale has maintained its relevance in today’s digital world

Everything Sounds is a series of short programmes considering the power of sound in art, science and culture

In the Dark aims to revolutionise radio by taking it out of its conventional context of individual listening in the car or kitchen, and creating communal live listening experiences in new and exciting settings

Microphone Museum, episode 11: Everything Sounds, is a short programme that examines how microphones have changed our world

Third Coast Festival aims to promote creative storytelling and audio exploration by commissioning new programmes, which are showcased on air, online and at live events

Artists’ projects

Our SoundCloud account features a playlist of some of our favourite artists’ audio projects:

https://soundcloud.com/criticalwavesradio

Bibliography

This bibliography features selected texts that explore, expand and challenge the ways that we think about radio, writing, the voice, editing and recording:

John E. Anderson,‘The Radio and Child Development’, The Phi Delta Kappan, Vol. 21, No.7 (1939), pp. 316-318

Bertolt Brecht, ‘Radio as a Means of Communication, A Talk on the Function of Radio’

Steven Connor, ‘Looping the Loop: Tape-Time in Burroughs and Beckett’

Nick Couldry, ‘Why Voice Matters: Culture and Politics after Neoliberalism’, (London: Sage Publications, 2010)

Tim Crook, Writing Audio Drama: Radio, Film, Theatre and Other Media (London: Routledge, 2015)

François Dagognet, Etienne-Jules Marey: A Passion for the Trace, trans. Robert Galeta and Jeanine Herman (New York: Zone Books, 1992)

Andrew Dubber, Radio in the Digital Age (Cambridge: Polity, 2013)

Evan Eisenberg, The Recording Angel: Music, Records and Culture from Aristotle to Zappa (London: Picador Books, 1988)

Lisa Gitelman, Scripts, Grooves, and Writing Machines: Representing Technology in the Edison Era (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2000)

Ben Hammerseley ‘Audible Revolution’, The Guardian, Thursday 12 February 2004

Douglas Kahn and Gregory Whitehead, eds., Wireless Imagination: Sound, Radio and the Avant-garde (Cambridge MA: MIT Press, 1994)

Michael C Keith, Broadcast Voice Performance (London: Focal, 1989)

Velimir Khlebnikov, ‘The Radio of the Future’

Friedrich Kittler, Gramophone, Film, Typewriter, trans. Geoffrey Winthrop-Young and Michael Wutz (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1999)

Michel Leiris, Rules of the Game: Vol. 1. Scratches (Baltimore and London: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997)

Thomas Y. Levin, ‘ “Tones from out of Nowhere”: Rudolf Pfenninger and the Archaeology of Synthetic Sound’

Tom McCarthy, C (London: Jonathan Cape, 2010)

Dave McQuown ‘Radio’ Chicago Media Studies Glossary

Orange Edward McMeans, ’Eavesdropping on the World: The Log of a Listening-Post in the Little Back Bedroom’, Scribner’s Magazine, Vol. 72, No. 2 1922-08, pp. 225-232.

John Durham Peters, Speaking into Air: A History of the Idea of Communication (Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 1999)

Konstantin Raudive, Breakthrough: An Amazing Experiment in Electronic Contact with the Dead, trans. Nadia Fowler (Garrards Cross: Smythe, 1971)

Pierre Schaeffer, ‘Acousmatics’, in Audio Culture: Readings in Modern Music, edited by Christopher Cox and Daniel Warner (Continuum, 2006), pp.76-81

Jeffrey Sconce, Haunted Media: Electronic Presence from Telegraphy to Television (Durham NC: Duke University Press, 2000)

Jonathan Sterne, The Audible Past: Cultural Origins of Sound Reproduction (Durham NC: Duke University Press, 2003)

David Toop, Sinister Resonance: The Mediumship of the Listener (London and New York: Continuum, 2010)

Allen S. Weiss, Phantasmic Radio (Durham NC: Duke University Press, 1995)

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