And now…I will unleash my over three decades as a radio broadcaster upon a review of a radio station that is the only one I currently like to listen to…, “Rooshkie Radio, WSNR”, Jersey City.
The first time I ever heard of Russians, “Boris and Natasha” were cartooned Russian agent caricatures I used to watch on “Rocky, The Flying Squirrel” show as a boy. On the nightly news back then, Chet Hutley, David Brinkley or Walter Cronkite would talk about the “cold war threat” from them and quote the newspaper, “Pravda”. Simultaneously, the movie, “The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming!” premiered to my young consciousness and then, linguistically via the Cuban Missile Crisis during President Kennedy’s administration in the early 1960s, when then, First secretary of The Soviet Communist Party and Prime Minister, Nikita Khrushchev performed his shoe-pounding rant at the United Nations’ General Assembly.
Then came the dancers at club “NV” Nashville and my meeting my fiancee` Nina via our “Cafe Skype”.
All of which obviously begat these days when I listen daily in the car on my commute to work and my laptop to “Rooshkie Davidzon Radio”, WSNR 640. The AM radio station’s music has a wide variety and very cool, often hip playlist; the Russian talk is helpful to my learning the language of my fiancee` who lives in Ukraine, but is part of the Russian speaking population there (there are two linguistic factions in Ukraine). I bet the old communist establishment of the Soviet Union is turning in it’s grave at the sound of this American-style, non propagandist radio station’s format!
Listening to this station daily (and appreciating their radio elements) augments my Pimsleur Approach CD lessons learning that I began in April of 2012. They have a full spot (commercials) load and the many telephone numbers of the advertisers, spoken in Russian, has helped me learn to count from zero (“нулевой” or “nul”) to twenty (“двадцать” or “dvadtsat'”) in Russkiy!
Their production is entertaining; the image elements enlightening and even when the automation fucks-up, it doesn’t take away from this very American-style terrestrial “Rooshkie” radio station. They have a featured traffic reporter girl, Natalia Bystritskaya, who is bubbly, humorous and in a “good mood” always!
The all-important morning show is anchored by a man who I call “the Russian Frankie Crocker” because of the jazzy background music bed that he does his talk over, Vadim Yarmolinets.
His laugh and self-deprecating way of handling caller and topics makes him easy to listen to even if you cannot translate or understand every word. I always get the “flavor” of what they are discussing!
Another notable listenable is Alexander Grant who, I determined a “sleuth” journalist personality without the benefit of understanding all of the words in Russian. It is awesome how with the power of just a few linguistics and a background in radio formatics I can decipher subject of their talk shows.
I love their production, the spontaneity of how they handle callers and even when the automation burps. Their image liners and fill bumpers are really the creative “radio” that I learned to love when bitten by the bug back in 1972 at Adelphi University’s WALI/WBAU.
When not talking, WSNR is eclectic;(boring) especially after seven o’clock U.S. eastern time and on weekends. Weekdays, the live over-the-air broadcast ends at 7p.m. but can still pick up the stream of music online. Sundays they are over-the-air all day until seven p.m., including a sports talk show Sunday evenings. The music mix is eclectic where you’ll hear everything from traditional Slavic folk and acoustic tunes to Barbara Streisand, Elton John, Stevie Wonder, Abba, Tina Turner and any electronica club jams that slip-in, (much less than when I first found this station, by-the-way) remind me of the hot Russian chicks I played for at club NV in Nashville, TN, circa 2004! I do not have to understand every single word in order to know what is going on due to my radio intuition and knowledge of the radio clock and vocal inflections! I notice a dearth of male American R&B or dance vocalist artist on WSNR’s musical playlist, however. How about some Sylvester from the disco days?!
My only advice to Mr. Gregory Devidzon, President of “Davidzon Radio” is do not sell-out to any U.S. radio corporations like Clear Channel! Please! пожалуйста!!
If you do, you will lose your radio station’s unique identity, political posture and entertainment values. Take it from someone whose radio career was abruptly discontinued by the corporatization, deregulation and automation which hit us beginning back in the early 1990s.
This is their website url, http://www.davidzonradio.com/index.htm and you can also dial them up streaming on any number of sites like tunein.com/radio/
As one of my LinkedIN.com comrades, Yuri Neshitov put it regarding my Russian learning methods, “You are at better position with learning Russian because love is the best tescher, tutor and assistent in this job… you a lucky man!”
Pickhitt: I give WSNR Four stars **** out of a possible five for live radio content in this day and time as a former radio personality. This is likely a brokerd deal with WSNR.
One thing I recommend is that they add a PLAYLIST or “now playing” to their website so that we what tunes we are listening to after talk hours on line and so we can support the artists whose music they play! As a former radio junkie, I love that I cannot understand all of the bad news of the day and commercials! Otherwise they would be just another cookie-cutter station I would not listen to as a professional. lol I dig their hourly station ID production and choice of filler music also! Advice: Use the “cough switch/button more! I hear too much coughing over the air! WTF? It is needlessly rude and unprofessional.
I pay particular attention to understanding the words that I can make-out when I hear the word “Ukraine” mentioned during their hour or half-hour news updates these days, knowing that my fiancee`, Nina, is in Kiev and political turmoil is spreading via a corrupt Russian-puppet regime “President” who should resign….
**SURESHOTT: Update: October, 2014, Davidzon Radio’s stream on the popular TuneIn.com no longer works. I contacted TuneIN and they verify it does not work for ANYbody anymore. Mysterious? I bet the Kremlin would “deny any wrongdoing”…