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For immediate release
April 24, 2000
Siriol Evans, NPR
202-414-2300
sevans@npr.org

NPR LAUNCHES ITS FIRST INTERNET-ONLY PROGRAM

All Songs Considered
Gives Music Snippets From NPR Newsmagazines Extended Play

Washington, DC - In its first Internet-only program, All Songs Considered SM at www.npr.org, National Public Radio® (NPR®) gives the music linking its newsmagazine stories extended play in an interactive environment. The multi-media presentation, hosted by All Things Considered ® director Bob Boilen, features full versions of an expansive range of musical selections including jazz, swing, folk, acoustic, blues, classical and world music. For years, listeners to NPR newsmagazines All Things Considered and Morning Edition® with Bob Edwards have expressed their interest in learning more about NPR's music "buttons".

"The Internet allows radio to become a truly interactive medium," says MJ Bear, Vice President, NPR Online. "All Songs Considered is a pioneering hybrid of NPR News and NPR Online. It represents NPR's first major thrust into Internet-only programming, and delivers the same high quality our radio listeners have come to expect."

Since its NPR OnlineSM beta-launch earlier this year, All Songs Considered has attracted more than 50,000 users per month. The audio is enhanced by text and visual elements providing biographical details about the musicians, photos, information about the instruments and musicians' quotes. All Songs Considered also hyperlinks users to featured musicians' Web sites. Online audiences can listen to the program via RealPlayer.

All Songs Considered is put together by a cross-divisional team that includes NPR News staff as well as NPR Online employees. "This program heralds the true integration of NPR programming divisions," says Bill Davis, Senior Vice President, Programming. "NPR's multi-media initiatives will serve existing and new audiences as we embrace new ways of making our content more relevant in their daily lives." Boilen and members of NPR News staff select the music and record the audio, while multi-media integration is led by NPR Online production supervisor Chris Mandra.

All Songs Considered offers online music fans uncommon selections from diverse musical genres -- the latest edition includes Brazilian singer Virginia Rodriguez, banjo player Bela Fleck performing with accordian player Kepa Junkera, and a Kansas City band's rendition of a Kurt Weill song.

In recent years, NPR has expanded its reach onto the Internet with NPR Online at www.npr.org. NPR Online brings hourly newscasts, news features, commentaries and live events to Internet users through original online reports, audio streaming and other multimedia elements. The Web site attracts 350,000 visits and more than a million page views per week.

Renowned for its journalistic excellence and standard-setting news, information, and cultural programming, NPR reaches a growing audience of nearly 15 million Americans each week via more than 644 public radio stations. NPR also distributes programming to listeners in Europe, Asia, Australia and Africa via NPR WorldwideSM, to military installations overseas via American Forces Network and throughout Japan via cable.