11 November 2017

[liff in Cascadia] BV-Radio.com: Cascadia's Favorite Music

There is a website devoted to Pacific Northwest local music; powered by Burgerville, it's called BV-Radio.com.

Right now it's devoted solely to playing music by Pacfic Northwestern artists. It has just two things to do, which is refreshingly simple; click the play button to start the stream, and a form to send feedback. There's also a bit of verbiage:
Welcome to BV-Radio.com, a new conversation about what makes this region-the beautiful, dynamic, Pacific Northwest-the unique place it is.
We have a goal to connect the people of the Northwest with each other and explore what makes this community so resilient, what restores us, what grounds us in our home. We are starting through music, and expanding from there…art, agriculture, food, architecture, design…wherever you and the story leads us.
We’ve created a platform for some of the region’s recording artists. Listen along. You’ll hear songs you recognize and songs you don’t. You’ll hear new music and classics from way back. But everything you hear has a connection to this region and the people who live here.
This is your home. It should sound like it. Join the conversation and we’ll make sure your voice-and your music-gets heard.
I've included the entire text because it provides a picture of an interesting ambition. Burgerville is the quintessential Northwest burger place, and no other place that I've experienced so far has managed to translate the PNW 'foodie' tropes of local sourcing, terrior, and seasonal availability so effectively to the crowd who isn't going to go out to the fashionable places. Lunching BV regularly is a relatively cheap way to sophisticate the palate.

As such, BV has developed a certain essential local POV as a now-indelible part of its brand. You can get burgers and fries that will sastisfy, and those you will like, in other chains, but none as PNW as the stuff at Burgerville.

BV-Radio, one can infer from the text of the site, is helping BV establish a bridgehead in more than just Northwest fast-food culture, but other intellectual sectors of the local spirit, offering itself up as the first brick in a bridge that could connect those Northwest things ... art, architecture, design ... that intangibly establish that you are here feeling that you can't get anywhere east of Rockies or south of the Adams-Onis treaty line. Listening to it is easy on the ear; the feeling is that of listening to KINK-FM, back in the day.

To bring this prolix meandering to a point, though, it was the logo that really intrigued. The big, classic radio mike, its capsule encased in the big steel cage, is a given. But the background really made me think twice.

To those of us in the region who think about the past, present and future, that design is no mystery. To those who don't look at a map so much, it may confuse. And the shape of it is very specific, and very very local.

The region I live in has acquired a sense of place and has called that Cascadia. The geographic design is a conception of what Cascadia could be defined as; the sum of the basins of the Columbia River, the Salish Sea, and everything along the coast east of the Cascades and the Canadian Rockies that drain to the sea. Commerically, BV is limited to NW Oregon and Western Washington; founded in Vancouver, WA, it's been a part of NW culture since its founding, around 1962. Through the arts and culture initiative that BV-Radio seems to represent, it sees itself as an available platform for more than just Oregon and Washington, and more than just music.

It's an interesting ambition for a chain of burger joints, but then again, Burgerville has grown into a rather unique chain of burger joints, with a vision that goes a little farther than just selling burgers and fries. BV's always been a little bit 'out there', and if its self-given remit seems a bit grand, it's never been insincere.

The music's free to stream (such a deal), and a link to buy the music is provided as the song is playing. And it's a good listen.

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