The beauty of satellite radio is not just that there are fewer commercials and a static-free signal. The real selling point for satellite radio in your car is the variety of choices. Whether you like to listen to old-time radio dramas or the latest pop music, satellite radio has a channel for you. Channels 4-10 are tied to a specific decade, so that you can listen to the 40’s on 4, the 50’s on 5, etc. ending with Y2K on channel 10. Since many of us spend so much of our time in cars, it really is worth the extra expense to activate this feature, so that our drive is never dull.
For the sports enthusiast, there are nearly a dozen channels, some devoted to a single sport, others covering sports in general. There are stations devoted to a single prolific artist, like Elvis Presley or Frank Sinatra. There are six or seven flavors of country music, from current Billboard top 100 Country to Bluegrass.
If you are religious, you will find stations devoted to various faiths and denominations. These include Christian pop music and traditional gospel. For the jazz fans, there are 4 or 5 stations with different flavors of jazz, like Dixieland, smooth jazz or blues jazz.
Fan of Broadway music? There is a channel filled with music from Tony Award winning musicals, as well as a station devoted entirely to movie soundtracks. There are public radio stations, GLBT radio, and political commentary to keep your mind awake and engaged. There are half a dozen channels devoted to the news, from every angle including international news from the BBC.
My personal favorites are the uncensored comedy channels that begin in the 90’s. Comedy Central has the hottest comics, while the “Foxx Hole” features comedians hand-picked by Jamie Foxx. There is a redneck comedy channel, and a wholesome, expletive-free channel as well for the kiddies. I am also partial to the aforementioned radio dramas, which keep me captivated while I am stuck in the morning commute traffic or on my long drive home.
Speaking of kiddies, if you ever have to ferry loud youngsters who demand that you sing “The Wheels on the Bus” until you are blue in the face, you will appreciate the lineup of several kids’ channels. These include teeny-bopper music on Radio Disney, as well as stations that focus more on early childhood development music.
The beauty of satellite radio is that there is something for everyone. Once you take the plunge and pay for a year or two of satellite radio, you will never want to go back to AM/FM radio. It’s just too unfocused, trying its best to please the widest possible audience, instead of narrowcasting to a specific segment like satellite. If you are on the fence about whether or not to purchase an annual subscription, I say “go for it!” You won’t regret a penny you spend as you soothe yourself in heavy traffic.
Written by Duncan MacLeod