The Ongoing History of New Music

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The Ongoing History of New Music is a radio program produced in Canada by Corus Entertainment and hosted by Alan Cross.[1] It is syndicated to several other radio stations, mostly but not exclusively Corus-owned, across Canada.

The Ongoing History chronicles the history of alternative rock, from its roots in punk and new wave to the modern day. An episode of the show may profile an important musician or band (Sex Pistols, The Smiths, R.E.M., Foo Fighters, The Cure, Nirvana, U2, Nine Inch Nails, The Velvet Underground, etc.), a significant musical trend such as grunge or Madchester, or a theme such as payola, gay musicians or significant cult figures.

Some topics are covered in a single show, while more substantial topics may be presented over two, three or four episodes.


The program first aired in 1993 on CFNY-FM in Toronto. It was produced directly by CFNY until 2008, when Cross left the station to become the head of Corus' new media division. Although the program continued to air on CFNY, it became a production of Corus' interactive ExploreMusic division until Cross left the company in 2011.[1] The show was discontinued at that time, although it resumed production in September 2014 after Cross was rehired by CFNY.[1]

Shorter Ongoing History segments, about a minute long, air at various times throughout the day on some of the program's affiliate stations during commercial breaks. In 2005, Cross also began production of a daily podcast available freely from their website. The minute-long podcasts share a similar format to the weekly show and detail one interesting rock fact each day.

Cross has also licensed the program's name to a number of Canadian compilation albums collecting classic alternative rock songs.


On April 8, 2007, Cross created a new word: Bandomynology, which is the study of the origins of band names. Cross devoted several segments of the show to investigate the nature of band names, consulting Dr. Sheila Embleton, a professor of linguistics at York University in Toronto, and Marc Hershon of Simmer Branding Studio, a “branding” agency in Sausalito, California and Priscilla Ord, in helping to create the term [2] Cross hopes to slowly introduce the term into academic studies of rock and alternative music, as well as music of all genres.

Cross describes the term in the notes from the episode Bandomynology: Naming Your Band - Part 1 - Seg. 1 below:

Episode guide[edit]

Please note that this list may not be complete. There have been over 800 episodes produced since the show began in 1993.



External links[edit]