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This node outlines Radio Nouspace, its mission, background, reasons for focusing on sound and radio, links to its streaming and on demand content, and contact information for John F. Barber, the curator. Read below for more information, or begin listening.


Radio Nouspace is an Internet radio station with a mission to archive and curate sound narratives. Many of these narratives represent the best historical and contemporary radio drama. Other examples include radio-audio drama, radio + sound art, and sound poetry that attempt to utilize radio as an evolving context for creativity and medium for transmission. Together, these examples inform our understanding and practice of storytelling.

Radio Nouspace experiments with affordances (potentials for particular actions) and interfaces of both legacy and future radio to create new types of storytelling, new listening experiences, and new forms of radio "ecology." [1] As a result, Radio Nouspace is both an online, interactive installation / performance work, and an action-based research site that intends to create new knowledge regarding the importance of sound in narrative and digital storytelling. [2]


Radio Nouspace was created and is maintained by John F. Barber. Questions? Comments? Opposing viewpoints? Contact . . .

John F. Barber
The Creative Media & Digital Culture Program
Washington State University Vancouver
Editor, Music, Sound, Noise, electronic book review
Curator, Brautigan Bibliography and Archive


[1] Andrew Dubber argues that "radio is a term used to refer to very different (though related) phenomena." For example, radio is an institution; an organizational structure; a category of media content with its own characteristics, conventions, and tropes; a series of professional practices and relationships; etc. As a result, radio work, content, technologies, or cultures cannot be considered as single subjects or processes, but rather must be considered as an "ecology," especially within the digital media environment in which "radio" is increasingly situated (Radio in The Digital Age Polity Books 2013).

Radio Nouspace continues a colorful history established by a former Vancouver-based commercial AM radio station. This station had several names and broadcast frequencies . . . KVAN (1939-1959; 910 AM), KGAR (1963-1981; 1480 AM), KVAN (1981-1989; 1550 AM), KMJK (1989-1991; 1550 AM), and KVAN (1991-2000; 1550 AM). Legend says Willie Nelson worked for a short time at KVAN as a DJ 1956-1959. In 1998, KVAN radio was sold to a Portland, Oregon, media group. The station was moved there, even though the broadcast license remains in Vancouver. Throughout its history, KVAN radio was truly a "local station" because its low-powered broadcast could not carry beyond the immediate vacinity of Vancouver.

[2] As a practice-based research site, Radio Nouspace interrogates narrative with questions like . . .
How do we make sense of sound as the central component of narrative?
What kinds of engaging, immersive listening experiences can we create and share with many listeners using sound(s) to recenter sound as the primary component of narrative, storytelling, and drama?
What about narratives based on interactivity, collaboration, and social networking among the listeners and between the participants (nee listeners) and the narratives themselves?
If the context of future radio is collaborative, how will multiple storytellers / journalists create, shape, and share stories?
What stories might be told? How? By whom? Would they be global in scope, or local? Would this matter?
What might be undertaken in conjunction with such a project (promotional/educational materials, website, social media, etc.) to increase its effectiveness and opportunities for social engagement?
Are other media (beyond sound) necessary? If so, what are they?