KUT to Document Austin’s Diverse Musical Culture to Create Interactive Digital Map
"Austin Music Map" Will Engage Audiences in the City's Underrepresented Musical Subcultures
AUSTIN, Texas — Jan. 30, 2012 — KUT’s flagship music program, Texas Music Matters, will document the network of formal and informal music venues that make Austin’s diverse music culture possible through an innovative journalism project — the Austin Music Map — which blends digital and broadcast technology that go beyond public media’s core platforms and audiences.
A collaborative documentary and performance series launching later this year and running through summer 2013, the Austin Music Map will explore Austin’s diverse sonic subcultures and the places where musicians regularly meet, perform and commune: front porches, backyards, garages, sidewalks and churches. In addition to documenting the city’s distinct sonic geography, the Austin Music Map will create an interactive map where people can learn about these spots where musical communities gather. The project will culminate with a celebratory music festival in 2013.
“Mapping Austin’s musical geography will enable KUT to engage with new and existing audiences on a deeper, more direct level,” said Stewart Vanderwilt, KUT’s director and general manager. “This will be one of the inaugural community collaborations of the new KUT Public Broadcast Center this summer – with many more to come.”
The Austin Music Map is one of 10 Localore projects being funded by the Association of Independents in Radio, Inc. (AIR). Localore is a producer-led transmedia project challenging public broadcasters to invent new forms of reporting that expand service to a wider public.
Other selected stations include: KALW-FM and KQED Radio and Television both in San Francisco; KCRW-FM, Los Angeles; KVNF-FM, Paonia, Colo.; Prairie Public Broadcasting, Fargo, North Dakota; Twin Cities Public Television, Minneapolis; WBEZ-FM, Chicago; WGBH Radio and Television, Boston; and WYSO-FM, Dayton, Ohio. For a complete list of the Localore 2012 Producer-Station Teams and their projects visit http://airmediaworks.org/localore
KUT will invite the community to participate in this comprehensive documentary project by sharing their knowledge of traditionally underrepresented music genres in Austin, such as blues, gospel or Tejano, and leading the project in new directions. The result will be a community-sourced archive that deepens the project’s database of music-related media.
Independent radio producer Delaney Hall, who spent five years in Austin before moving to Chicago to work as a producer with the Third Coast International Audio Festival, will spend 11 months as a KUT producer-in-residence directing the Austin Music Map.
“You hear all the time that Austin is the ‘Live Music Capital of the World,’ but we want to explore why,” said. Hall. “We’re curious to learn more about the stories and histories that thread through Austin’s different musical traditions— whether it’s bluegrass or conjunto or hip hop — and we want the whole city to help us map the places and venues that make Austin’s many vibrant musical subcultures possible.”
“We expect great things from this collaboration, and will be working with KUT and Delaney to amplify the project’s impact as it rolls out,” said Sue Schardt, AIR’s executive director.
Over the past five years, AIR has emerged as a force for identifying, cultivating and deploying talent to the benefit of the public media network. Founded in 1988, AIR is a vibrant, tightly networked association of more than 800 producers, journalists, technicians, media entrepreneurs, and sound artists. AIR’s membership now spans 46 states and 14 countries worldwide including leading stations, 501c3’s, and public media networks – APM, BBC, NPR, and PRI. In addition to CPB, financial support for Localore comes from the MacArthur Foundation, the Wyncote Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
For more than 50 years, KUT 90.5, listener-supported public radio from Austin, Texas, has striven to be the most trusted radio source for news and music in Central Texas. A founding member of NPR, KUT established a news department in 2002. Since then, KUT News has won more than 50 state, national and international awards for journalistic excellence. KUT is nationally known for playing a unique blend of handpicked, homegrown and uniquely Austin music. This summer, KUT will complete construction on the KUT Public Broadcast Center, which will demonstrate KUT’s work from the inside out and showcase KUT as one of the most creative, exciting and community-focused public media organizations in the world.