Episode 12: To Soothe The Savage Breast presents:

Tympanum EffectEpisode 12: To Soothe The Savage Breast

 In acquiring a show at the station, a potential DJ must sit-in on a minimum of three others.  He must shadow three other shows and their hosts to learn the ins-and-outs of how they run their broadcasts, watch as they troubleshoot problems, and observe how they employ the modest technical skill required to conduct a radio program.

It is suggested that those DJs whom you select to shadow be ones you share similar styles with or whose content is familiar to you—and that you might potentially sub for in the event that they can’t make it to the studio.

There are three DJs who fit that bill for me when I first came aboard–as it’s their programs that first drew me to the station and filled me with the desire to be their peer.  They are George Alexis, the host of Horsehead Nebula, whose awesome and eclectic prog-rock, metal and noise show is the one mine broadcasts after each week; Bill Lupoletti, who broadcasts music from around the world in the language of groove each Friday night; and one more, whom you listeners may or may not yet be familiar with:  DJ Bob, host of Curved Air—a late-night Friday broadcast that focuses on broad spectrums of new and old classical, from the exalted canon of the previous five centuries, to the experimental composers of modern-day.

Before I even walked through the doors of this station, it was his show, Curved Air, which is named after one of Terry Riley’s most well-known pieces, that caused me to have the clear realization that WRIR would become my musical home.

There’s a well-known line from a play by William Congreve that goes:


“Musick has Charms to sooth a savage Breast,

To soften Rocks, or bend a knotted Oak.

I've read, that things inanimate have mov'd,

And, as with living Souls, have been inform'd,

By Magick Numbers and persuasive Sound.”


Bob is a calming figure here at the station.  It was a relaxing joy to sit-in with him one night in August and talk for three hours about Reich, Ligeti, Xenakis, Nico Muhly, minimalists, serialists, microtones, superstition, causal reality, the works of Stanley Kubrick, and musical nerd-jokes regarding 4’33 by John Cage.

This week’s episode, “To Soothe A Savage Breast”, is a small homáge to Bob and the peace he adds to my evenings when I tune in to Curved Air late Friday nights.  We’ll begin with the famous work by Terry Riley from which his show gains its name…

Song Artist Album Label Year
JR Tympanum


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    December 3rd, 2014

Posted In: Music Shows