How did you get started doing this show?
I have always been a rabid guitar music fan— mainly rock, fusion, and quality metal. My passion for seeking out new music has led me to discover many obscure guitar talents from all over the world. When I started graduate school in 1999, I interned and made a demo tape for the local college station, 88.5 WRUR, which they liked enough to give me a show. In 2003, I invited my good friend Bob Stewie, aka Heavy Metal Bob, who owns a local CD shop in upstate New York that specializes in all genres of metal and hard rock from around the world, to join me. Since we started the show, WRUR expanded by hooking up with local PBS station WXXI, giving us an even wider audience.
What sort of music do you play?
It’s all about the underground with a little variety thrown in for good measure. Most radio shows that play metal or guitaroriented rock are very rigid with their formats, focusing only on the well-known artists of the genres. The Academy of Shred is a format for listeners to learn about the many lesser-known, high-quality players and bands that would never get airplay anywhere else. There are a lot of bands we were playing back in their demo days that have record deals now. We are focused on seeking out the best of the best, no matter how obscure, and we guarantee that anyone who listens to the show will discover a new killer player or band each week. Anyone who would like to submit music for airplay can do so by contacting us at myspace.com/academyofshred. We listen to everything we get thoroughly, and we crank it loud and proud.