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Advice From the Guy Upstairs

Monday, March 10, 2008

I've been posting SXSW tips from my friend and current Austin resident Vic. As it turns out, there are former Austinites among the ranks here at WNYC. Robby from the 26th Floor weighs in with guidance on everything from BBQ to how NOT to catch a cab.

But it's ...

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Vic's SXSW Tips 3: Check Under the Hoodie

Saturday, March 08, 2008

More from my friend Vic Krothe, this time on how to dress for 'The Live Music Capital of the World:'

monkey_hoodie.jpg'Bring a variety of different layers. It might be in the 70's-80's during the day, and it might get down to 40 at ...

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Vic's SXSW Tip 2: Traffic Is Bigger in Texas

Thursday, March 06, 2008

More SXSW advice from my pal Vic Krothe. He's big on traffic tips:

parking_meter.jpg'Parking is going to suck. Period. Get where you're going and stay there, if at all possible, or run the risk of losing your precious spot. If you end ...

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Vic's SXSW Tip 1: Drive Smart

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Austin traffic lightLike the rest of the Soundcheck staff, I'm traveling to South by Southwest for the first time. I've worked in music-related roles at college, community and public radio stations for about 10 years, yet I've managed to avoid this particular ...

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When in Austin...

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Stubb’s BBQ, Austin, TexasSoundcheck will broadcast live on March 12 & 13 from this year's South by Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas. Been there before? Tell us: What should John Schaefer and the staff should do in Austin ...

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Soundcheck To Mess With Texas

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

WNYC's John Schaefer and Soundcheck are heading to Austin next week for the 2008 South by Southwest Music Festival. Or, as it's more efficiently known: SXSW. A print-only acronym if we've ever seen one. ("Sick-soo?" "Sack-saw?" Ah, nevermind.)

Soundcheck will broadcast live at 2 p.m. ET / 1 p.m ...

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Back From the DPRK

Monday, March 03, 2008

deplane_2370.jpg

The New York Philharmonic performed an historic concert in the East Pyongyang Grand Theater. WNYC's John Schaefer was part of the orchestra's entourage, and he hosted the concert broadcast. Now, Schaefer's baaaack. Don't miss what he had to say about the trip to North ...

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North Korea in pictures (and Beijing too)

Friday, February 29, 2008



Lorin Maazel meets the North Korean delegation.
See all photos from Soundcheck On Site: North Korea

Originally uploaded by WNYC's John Schaefer
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Farewell to Pyongyang

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Our North Korean handlers have been going crazy trying to maintain some semblance of order among the unruly mob that is the international press. But it turns out they will have the last laugh. At 7 am, room phones start to ring. Please pay your room and phone/internet charges between ...

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Pyongyang, day 2: the big event, Part II

Thursday, February 28, 2008

So, after all this, what about the concert itself? Well, you can presumably hear it by clicking on the link to our broadcast of it elsewhere on this website (ed.'s note: our broadcast window has expired. Check the New York Philharmonic's site, which has full online audio/video of the event: ...

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Pyongyang, day 2: the big event, part I

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Day 2 starts just a few hours after a frustrating day 1 ends. Upon waking, no tech fairies have appeared to magically make connections work, though Larry Rock has been making reassuring noises in his emails to NY, which I'm cc'd on. The banquet room has been set up for ...

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The Dark Side of the Moon

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

I don't know what I really expected from North Korea - I pictured it as a steely, grey, cold place: a bleak, barren land with people moving around in a combination of militaristic precision and cult-induced narcosis.
So when we flew in over a bleak, barren landscape with almost ...

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Beijing

Monday, February 25, 2008

Under other circumstances, the New York Philharmonic's performance here tonight might be a story unto itself. But with the orchestra leaving tomorrow morning, with its press corps in tow, for the history-making concert in North Korea, tonight is simply a prelude to the main event.

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Destination: Pyongyang

Friday, February 22, 2008

Greetings and welcome to Soundcheck’s Pyongyang blog! For the next week, Soundcheck host John Schaefer will be part of the New York Philharmonic’s Asian 2008 entourage as the orchestra makes a grand overture of cultural diplomacy, performing a concert in North Korea. If the internet access that we're promised actually ...

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The Berlin Broadcasts at a glance

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

An action-packed week in Berlin has yielded five very busy shows about that city's music scene. Check out our visits with various musicians, journalists, producers, and others on the rock, cabaret, world-music and electronic music scenes.

Day One: Berlin: Is it Hot or is it Over? (November 5, 2007)

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A Week in Berlin

Thursday, November 01, 2007


Originally uploaded by wnyc

For the intrepid music fan, a week in Berlin can be overwhelming in the best sense. After all, it's a city that finds room for at least 2,000 active bands, 50 theaters, seven orchestras, three state-funded opera ...

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Some final impressions

Thursday, November 01, 2007


Originally uploaded by wnyc

A week in Berlin, based out of a hotel at the old border crossing known as Checkpoint Charlie, is both an exciting and a sobering experience. The city is young, and it's full of young people, and ...

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Behind the Scenes in Berlin

Thursday, November 01, 2007


Originally uploaded by wnyc

Left to right: Soundcheck technical director Irene Trudel, WNYC program director Chris Bannon, producer Brian Wise and host John Schaefer listen in during a performance by the Berlin band 17 Hippies. (photo by executive producer Gisele Regatao)

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John's Impressions: A final taping & "Alternative rap"

Thursday, November 01, 2007

It would've been nice to have recorded this week's shows in the order they were to be broadcast, but given people's schedules, that was never going to happen. So our last day in Berlin saw us recording -- strangely enough -- the opening segment of our Soundcheck On Site: ...

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In the Studio with 17 Hippies

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Musicians in Berlin have a particular talent for turning old disused industrial buildings into incredibly unique rehearsal spaces. The acoustic folk-rock 17 Hippiesband 17 Hippies is a prime example: the group's airy studio is located in the KulturBrauerei, a huge converted 19th-century brewery located in ...

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