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Pureplay of the Day: Pear Radio

Many home-produced pureplays are inspired by a love of broadcast radio. Some, like yesterday’s The World of Blues (www.theworldofblues.com) and the recently spotlighted East Village Radio (www.eastvillageradio.com), emulate radio by presenting live hosts. Today’s pureplay is mostly playlist-driven, but is motivated by affection for what its site calls “FM radio’s free-form golden age.”

An 8,500-song playlist ensures that the stream won’t go stale if you listen for hours, and you might do so. Pear Radio (www.pearadio.com, and it is Pear, not Pea) crosses genre boundaries with its ear fixed resolutely on good music, not niche music. This morning we’ve heard electronic atmospherics (Thievery Corporation), middle-road rock (Coldplay), classics (The Beatles), venerable folk-rock (Bruce Cockburn), and a ravishing instrumental by Kevin Keller that we had never encountered.

In a word, variety. Good music discovery, too. This is an Internet station that spares you the trouble of surfing the dial, or your Spotify friend lists, to keep the day’s music fresh. We’re reminded of Radio Paradise (www.radioparadise.com), another POTD pick — the same high level of curation expertise but with programming boundaries stretched a bit wider.

We could not find a pop-out player on the site, so you have to boot up a desktop player. But there is a dedicated iPhone/iPod app for easy headphone listening. Be sure to read the About page for station owner Dave Hill’s personable explanation of his project. Like most indie pureplays, Pear Radio is supported by listener donations.

Brad Hill

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