I was all set to put together an extensive analysis of the impact of Christmas music this past fall, based on my sense that holiday programming was a huge factor in the Fall ’06 book. Then Inside Radio’s Mike Kinosian beat me to it, with a report that goes far beyond what I was planning on doing. Mike has graciously allowed us to distribute the report to Jacobs Media clients, as well as post it on our website.
Since the Christmas of 2001, the all-Christmas music phenomenon has become even more powerful. Perhaps this past year gave it even more resonance, as the country is mired in an unpopular war, and there’s more uncertainty over just about everything. As celebrity dirt has become something of a fantasy escape from the harsh reality of the hard news of the day, Christmas music often serves as audio comfort food, allowing people to curl up in a sort of musical fetal position.
All of this continues to create serious challenges for Rock formats, already suffering under a variety of impediments, from “cell phone onlies” to mediocre new music to listeners who are becoming more and more comfortable with new technology.