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Alan Cross: Broadcasting, Technology in the Music Industry & Saying Yes

Joining us this week out of Toronto is broadcaster, writer and all round music geek Alan Cross. Alan is is best known as host of the syndicated radio series The Ongoing History of New Music, The Secret History of Rock, and ExploreMusic.

In addition to his broadcasting career, Alan is also the author of many books on music, including The Alternative Music Almanac and The History of Alternative Rock. In this interview we hear Alan’s thoughts on how the music industry has changed, how broadcasting has changed, and the advice he’d offer to aspiring music industry professionals.

Chris Keaton - sidebar 30-roses-sidebar


  • We hear how Alan never liked the title of his program “The Ongoing History of Modern Rock”
  • Alan shares how he initially wanted to be a news anchor or journalist, but actually hated it when it came down to it
  • Alan tells us how he sees the introduction of streaming has changed the economic balance of the music industry
  • We hear how the way the music business operates has changed compared to how it worked in the 90s
  • “You cannot fight technological disruption” – Alan Cross
  • Alan shares how he thinks technology has changed the way we experience music
  • We hear how the technological advances in the music industry have changed the way Alan works as a broadcaster and writer
  • “I no longer need to possess music – I’m ok with just accessing it” – Alan Cross
  • “Digital downloads and streaming cannot be compared as they are not the same thing” – Alan Cross
  • We hear how radio is having to change its approach, as people can listen to whatever they want on demand now
  • Alan shares his thoughts on podcasting, and the role that has within the overall broadcasting landscape
  • We hear the advice Alan learned from William Shatner


  • On getting starting in broadcasting – go to school so you can gain the proper practical skills
  • Get inside the current media establishment and see where that takes you
  • Say yes to everything – you don’t know where opportunities will lead to

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