The parade of new music radio programs marches on, and this week it's "In House with Jeremy Peterson," the new music broadcast on OPB radio. The show features a varied playlist, plenty of in-studio performances, and while it plays its fair share of local bands, its content extends beyond Portland city limits. Peterson chats with us about the show's format, OPB's relationship toward music, and why it's not good to fake a cold during pledge week.
Tell us about the format of "In House."
It'll likely develop more as we move on, but I'd like to just call it "good music." But more specifically, it's largely a mix of things that fit under the increasingly slippery umbrella of "indie music." So, you'll hear indierock, singer/songwriters, pop, rootsy stuff, etc., with a bit of a bend toward new and Northwest-based music. There will also be a fairly consistent in-studio element, which we're very excited about. We've already aired sessions with Laura Veirs, the Shaky Hands, and Gill Landry, and have stuff upcoming from Blitzen Trapper, the Veils, and more. It's hard sometimes to keep my inner fanboy/dork hidden.
While other PBS stations (most notably KCRW in LA) play a lot of music, OPB is more talk-oriented. Do you think "In House" is the start of a format change at the station? Would you like to make the show a daily occurrence?
I think that the relationship that has been—and is—developing between public stations and music that is mostly ignored by commercial radio, is a really interesting and positive trend. You can point to several examples where this is happening both all over the country and within NPR itself. Still, OPB has become what it is by focusing on news and other talk programming, so that format clearly fills a need for a large number of listeners. I don't know, personally I see the value in each. I'm a music fan and a public radio fan, and I'm just glad to see the results of the two interacting a bit more than maybe they have in the past.
As an employee of OPB, do you actually have to take part in pledge week? Or can you just fake a cold and call in sick that week?
I'm actually really looking forward to participating in pledge week, at least my first one. Maybe the novelty will wear off quickly. Besides, sick days at a full-time job in a music scene like this are at a premium. If the Smiths reunite and play a weekend show in Portland, I'm going to need those to fall back on.
"In House with Jeremy Peterson" airs every Saturday and Sunday evening at 9 pm on OPB radio (KOPB 91.5).