If you're bored with the manufactured rubbish that passes for popular music these
days, you really should try the most surprising mix of music you'll ever hear: Late
Junction on BBC Radio 3,
Monday to Thursday nights from 10:15pm. Late Junction describes itself as "a laid-back
mix, from world music and jazz to contemporary classical and electronica." I've certainly
never come across a more eclectic range of music, covering everything from Albanian
folksingers to Frank Zappa.
About half the albums I've purchased over the last six months have come directly from
hearing something I liked on Late Junction. There's always a few tracks you love,
and a few you loathe on any given evening, but it's always inspiring and stretching.
Best of all, you can listen on
demand over the Internet to the last four programmes.
Uniquely, Late Junction has even inspired the creation of a brand new record label
which publishes musicians who might otherwise not get an airing. The latest compilation, Nordic
Nights, is particularly splendid; track 3 (excerpt)
is perhaps the most mind-blowing piece I've heard this year, combining a full church
organ, the pedal steel guitar, and an African gospel choir.
Give it a try if you fancy a challenge!