Revisiting “Cypress Avenue”

Here’s another blast from the past. Nearly 10 years ago, I interviewed Bill Shapiro about “Cypress Avenue,” a staple of Kansas City public radio. The past decade has been kind to Shapiro. He celebrated both the 25th and 30th anniversaries of the show and launched the great concert series “Cypress Avenue: Live at the Folly,” which has brought Jerry Lee Lewis, Bettye LaVette, Madeleine Peyroux, Los Lobos, Sly and Robbie and other great acts to town. His show producer at the time, Robert Moore, has since started the fantastic “Sonic Spectrum” radio show and founded OxBlood Records.

If you don’t listen to either “Cypress Avenue” or “Sonic Spectrum,” you are missing out. “Spectrum” podcasts are archived by Present Magazine, and while the only way to catch “Cypress Avenue” is to turn your dial to 89.3 FM from noon to 2 p.m. on Saturdays, this feature will bring you up to speed.

Keep Reading:

Down on “Cypress Avenue”

2 thoughts on “Revisiting “Cypress Avenue”

  1. This was an excellent piece, Joel. I’m ashamed to say that I’ve only occasionally listened to “Cypress Avenue.” Having never been much of a radio listener, mainly for the reasons cited in your article – commercial radio – I’ve stuck to listening to CDs in the car, with periodic forays into the FM dial…

    Regardless, perhaps I’ll start streaming KCUR on Saturday afternoons now in the comfort of my living room. Now that I’m out east, 89.3 on my dial brings up WPFW, community radio in DC, which happens to almost exclusively play jazz – and good jazz at that.

    At least the same frequency offers solid tunes.

    Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thanks for reading, Andrew. I’m glad you’re able to enjoy “Cypress Avenue” from afar. Please don’t get me started on the lack of jazz on Kansas City radio today, or the sad, sad state of radio in general. If it’s north of 92 on the dial and not a ball game, I stay far away.

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