Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Beats: BBC's Xtra Somethin'

By now, most are probably familiar with my fascination of British soul. So you can imagine my delight several weeks ago when a reader sent me this crypic IM: BBC 1Xtra. Check it out. That was in February; by now it's a daily-must.

1Xtra is the BBC's black music digital radio station. Might not sound like much on this side of the pond, but this was a first in the UK for the broadcasting behemoth. It was launched as a legal alternative to the many pirate stations that exist in Britain. The station was one of five new digital BBC stations to debut in August 2002.

Wu Tang's RZA performing for 1Xtra

The service plays black music in many forms, from hip-hop and R&B to garage and dancehall. Even more appealing, it's an all-digital service so you can program according to your listening pleasure. You can listen live over the internet, or choose from hundreds of interviews, concerts or sessions. A significant portion of 1Xtra's programming are live concerts, such as Raphael Saadiq & Rahsaan Patterson live or Myron, Don-E, Lynden David Hall and Brand New Heavies live.

Another added bonus: listening to the DJs in their oh-so-sexy black British accents. *Sigh*