Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Sirius XM Moves or Renames Dozens of Channels Including Soul Town (49), Deep Tracks (27) To Make Room for…What?

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As a devoted SiriusXM listener I am outraged by the changes they’ve made to some of their channels today.

Soul Town, ch 49, which played “Classic Soul and Motown,” has been moved to 74 and rebranded Smokey’s Soul Town, for Smokey Robinson. Soul Town was sensational because it played a deep field of great R&B, not just Motown. I’m hoping the new name is just re-branding, but I fear the playlist will now focus even more heavily on Motown, not including Atlantic, Stax, and dozens of small labels that had key R&B classic hits. Much as I love Smokey Robinson, I don’t want to hear just those songs 24/7.

Rolling Stone’s David Browne reports that Deep Tracks, aka classic rock, has been punted from channel 27 to nowhere. It won’t be on most Sirius XM radios if at all. What nerve! These are the great album cuts that made rock and roll. The largest part of any audience is still Boomers, I’m afraid. This is Sirius’s way of trying to screw that audience.

A few things remain unchanged: The Beatles, Bruce Springsteen, Underground Garage all remain intact. Howard Stern, of course. But it does seem like a lot of channels, like Soul Town, now have celebrities’ names attached to them. Not just Smokey Robinson, but Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Ozzy Osbourne, Diplo, etc. I guess Sirius felt like the listeners wouldn’t go to stations without these names and just listen to the music. I hope it works.

But again, if the Dells’ “Stay in My Corner” and JJ Jackson’s “But It’s Alright” aren’t played as often as “Reach Out, I’ll Be There,” and Ken Spider Webb isn’t on 24 hours a day, they’ll be hearing from me!

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedmanhttps://www.showbiz411.com
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.
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