I've been living with SiriusXM for nearly six months now. I have it in my car along with an internet subscription which allows me to listen throughout my home and via my iPhone and iPad. The recent bonus of the internet subscription is the addition of "on demand" where they archive special shows.
After six months of listening I feel comfortable in submitting a top 10 list of my favorite channels. Here we go.
1. The Underground Garage - Run by Steve Van Zandt and programmed by Kid Leo it's rock and roll heaven. So many great DJs, so much great music. Consistently makes me feel 18.
2. Outlaw Country - Again run by Steve Van Zandt, it's the best alt. country station I've heard. Middays with Elizabeth Cook are a delight.
3. The Loft - An adult album alternative (AAA) format with great DJs. They include Vin Scelsa, Mike Marrone and Meg Griffin. Some of the day is done live. The fact that many of the channels aren't actually live is the only real downside to sat radio. David Johansen's weekly show is a highlight.
4. Deep Tracks - Hearing album cuts of songs you'd all but forgotten about is a total rush. Evenings with Jim Ladd make me feel like I'm in some wonderful LA timewarp.
5. Soul Town - I have this theory. If it was in the top 40 in the 60s or 70s and it was soul music it was fantastic. As a youth I only heard the crossover soul hits, never having discovered WJMO here in Cleveland. Soul Town helps fill in the missing gaps in my education.
6. Sirius XMU - The indie rock station that makes me realize we're living in a great era for new music. I enjoy the blog DJs who's cynicism is refreshing.
7. Willie's Roadhouse - When someone tells me they like country music but not the stuff with the twang, I inwardly cringe. This is real country, the way country radio sounded from the 50s through the 70s. Run by Willie Nelson of course. Twang on.
8. Real Jazz - All the jazz greats and none of the smooth stuff. Straight, no chaser. This stuff leaves me swooning.
9. SiriusXM Pops and Symphony Hall (tie) - I'm listening to more and more classical music these days. Whether it be from the huge vinyl collection I've amassed or on these channels I listen to often while working in the office.
10. The Joint - If I need to feel irie I head to the reggae music. It's always sunny.
These are just my top 10. There's so many other great listens including the eclectic soft rock of The Bridge, the 50s, 60s and 70s channels, those specialty channels like Jam On, Springsteen, and Grateful Dead.
The beauty of SiriusXM is that there is always something good on. That cannot be said of terrestrial radio.