We've done it before, and it's always a lot of fun so we're doing another A to Z Week next week. All week long from 12/16 through 12/20, WYEP will be playing our music alphabetically by song title.
We're going to start with David Bowie's "Absolute Beginners" (appropriate!) on Monday at 6 AM and continue through Friday at 6 PM when we will end with "Zombie" by The Cranberries.
We're not playing our entire library alphabetically, though. We have around 20,000 albums in our library, so that would take almost two straight years of continuous 24/7 airplay to plow through our entire library alphabetically!
Here are a couple of answers to some questions you might have about A to Z Week:
Q: Are you playing the music alphabetically around the clock during A to Z Week?
No, we're starting the alphabetical songs at a 6 AM each day, and ending at different time throughout the week: 9 PM on Monday, 10 PM on Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday, and at 6 PM on Friday.
Q: Do you allow cover songs during the A to Z Week?
Yes! However, only one version of any one song. So while we might play, say, Jimi Hendrix's cover of "All Along the Watchtower," we wouldn't also play Bob Dylan's original version. Otherwise, they would alphabetically come right next to each other and we don't want to play the same song twice in a row (great as they both are).
Q: Hey, I just heard a song with a title that begins with "The" in a different part of the alphabet! What gives?
We're using traditional alphabetization rules. You know, the way books are filed in public libraries. All song titles beginning with the words "A," "An," and "The" get those words dropped from the title. Numbers are sorted as if they are words. Titles that begin with non-alphanumeric characters (like a parenthesis or an apostrophe) are sorted as though that character was not there.
Q: Is there any date/year range or cut-off for songs included?
Nope. The songs we're playing this year during A to Z Week span from a 1956 Elvis Presley hit through to this year. (Actually, we have a couple of holiday-themed songs that might pre-date 1956, but no spoilers!)
Also, the songs are not limited by style (there will be rock, folk, soul, blues, reggae, and more) nor geography (we'll have songs by Pittsburgh artists all the way to performers from Belgium, Ireland, and Sweden).
If you have any other questions, feel free to send 'em my way at [email protected] And enjoy A to Z Week!
~~Mike Sauter, WYEP Station Manager