Now that I have a car I listen to more radio than I used to. I usually keep it tuned to CJSR, CKUA, CBC Radio 2, and sometimes Sonic, but if I've exhausted those possibilities I tentatively branch out and try some of the other stations. It's not usually what I want to listen to, but sometimes I hit on a gem in the general radio crap.
A month ago, I randomly hit the buttons, and I heard "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana. I smiled and started bobbing my head, and then I looked at the station readout. It was the classic rock station, K-ROCK, a station that I always remembered as having obnoxious, stale djs and taking a high-and-mighty attitude about how they played "classic rock - the ONLY rock worth listening to". "No way," I thought, "that's not possible. Music that I listened to in junior high school being played on a classic rock station? That's...that's not right...is it?" Apparently it is. Over the next few weeks, I heard "Jeremy" by Pearl Jam, a random smattering of Big Sugar, "Black Hole Sun" by Soundgarden, "Interstate Love Song" by Stone Temple Pilots, and a few other songs from 90s "alternative rock" bands. This cannot be! I may be old, but I'm not "Classic Rock" old! YOU'RE DESTROYING MY ILLUSIONS OF YOUTH, K-ROCK!
I was so torn up about it I actually looked for a "defninition" of classic rock in Wikipedia, and found it (of course). According to this loose definition, classic rock consists of songs ranging from "the early 1960s through most of the 1980's". Ha! So screw you, K-ROCK, you've changed your format to bow to the pressures of the changing marketplace! Try and be snooty about your whole "classic rock" status now! And now I can go back to listening to my independent radio stations and being snooty about non-commercial radio.
(You know, of course, that in less than 10 years they're going to format a "grunge/alternative" rock station pandering to people in my age bracket, with a gruff radio voiceover saying stuff like "Remember the stuff you used to listen to when you were a kid? Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Matchbox 20, Silverchair, The Smashing Pumpkins? Now listen to them all on one station. We play nothing but the best alternative rock you love, without any of that modern crap." And on that day, I will sob like a baby. And not just because some of those bands are absolutely TERRIBLE.)