Jack White, Jens Lekman and The Roots show public radio some love

By Laura Ferreiro

It’s hard to think of something powerful enough to bring together such a diverse array of supporters as Jack White, Best Coast, Passion Pit, Jens Lekman, Jakob Dylan, Tenacious D and The Roots. But Public Radio Music Month has done just that.

All of these artists and many others recently signed an open letter to public radio, thanking it for playing music that doesn’t sound like everything else on the radio, and for asking intelligent questions. My Morning Jacket, Eddie Vedder, Ozomatli, MGMT and Marketa Irglova also signed their names to bring attention to the importance of public radio.

“Thank you for taking chances. Thank you for playing our music even when – especially when – it doesn’t sound like everything else on the radio dial,” the letter reads. “Thank you for inviting us into your studios and asking us intelligent questions. Thank you for introducing us to some of the most important music in our lives, music that made us who we are.”

What’s more, singer Nellie McKay published a lengthy editorial in the Huffington Post touting the cultural benefits of public radio and explaining how it changed her life. “Public radio is the last oasis of free and independent music,” she said. “For satellite radio channels, you have to subscribe; commercial stations are as corporate as basic cable. Musicians who don’t fall neatly into any clear genre would be lost without the local and national support of NPR and public radio stations around the country.”

For years, National Public Radio has provided a much-needed alternative to major corporate radio stations that gives lesser-known artists valuable exposure and showcases groundbreaking music hand-selected by DJs.

To learn more about Public Radio Music Month and the exciting array of events taking place throughout April, visit PublicRadioMusicMonth.org.

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