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Tuesday, April 05, 2005

How Good Is Satellite Radio?

So I'm on the road this week, just like the normal roadie I fly in, rent a car, drive around a lot to visit customers, eat at restaurants, and stay at Hampton Inns. But this week is just a little different, and different in a tremendously excellent way. Monday morning, as I'm driving to my first appointment, I start surfing the AM band, looking for Imus or Stern, no luck. So I pull out the CD booklet, but first decide to see what's on the old FM, so I hit the mode button, conveniently located on my steering wheel (a terrific invention.) To my surprise, instead of going from AM to FM, I go from AM to XM. That's right baby, satellite radio.

Now other than playing around a little bit with GA Hill's Sirius unit in his car, I've never experienced this invention. So I start surfing, and to my surprise, it's just heavenly. Slightly overwhelmed at first, not knowing any of the stations, I focus on some of the essentials. ESPN & Comedy to name a few, both great selections. After two full days, I've found a very solid pre-set rotation, which I'm quite proud of, and there's still plenty of exploration to be done. The great thing about this week is opening week of baseball, which is fully covered from channels 175-189 on your XM dial. On 175, you'll find the lost, but not forgotten, Rob-Ron-Raja-Reshaun-Rex Dibble, formally of the Dan Patrick show, currently hosting a 100% baseball show with Kevin Kennedy, and doing a fine job. Channels 150-151 are both comedy, and let me tell you, I've had (for you internet acronym nerds) dozens of LOL's in the past 2 days. This morning on 150, Comedy xM did a tribute to Cheech & Chong, then channel 151 came in with a tribute to the Great White North (Bob & Doug McKenzie). From 10-4 (EST) you're pretty well covered with the Herd & Dan Patrick, both are tough to listen to non-stop, but both have their moments of entertainment.

As for Music, I haven't explored all of the XM options yet. I can tell you that channel 47, known as Ethel, is extremely solid (They played Janes Addiction - Classic Girl, which might be the key to my heart). Channels 7, 8, & 9 (70's-80's-90's) are all disappointing.

Normally, this road trip would have sucked. I've logged in 900 + miles in 2 days so far, almost a record for me. But I have to admit, it's almost been the best 900 miles of my life, thanks to XM radio.

I know that a lot of people on this board are going to tell me that Sirius is better, which it might be, but you're going to have to convince me of that before I go out & buy my very own satellite radio.

I don't know, now that XM has exclusive rights to every MLB game available on a given day, I would go XM. I also hope you buy some sort of XM radio that you can use in our house, as well.

I've actually been considering switching out my Sirius for XM, if it weren't for more pressing financial concerns. Go with the XM, Sambuca, and we'll have the best of both worlds.
Just a little update on day 3 with XM. Many good times were had today on my 300 + miles of wind shield time. Most notably, on Rhymes xL, I not only heard 1, but 2 songs from Warren G's Regulator CD. I melted.
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