KPBS created the Summer Music Series to highlight San Diego’s diverse music scene, and provide a platform for engaging storytelling and conversation about our community. It began in 2019 with in-studio performances and interviews, but with the pandemic, we had to re-calibrate and find creative solutions to keep the series going and relevant during these uncertain times. We’ve increased the focus on diversity, using music as a thread to discuss Black Lives Matter, cultural appropriation, hardships wrought by the pandemic, and music as therapy. In order to create the multimedia experience beyond just radio, we collaborated with our TV, and web departments to create specialized content for each platform; artist videos w/ demonstrations and commentary, long-form interviews for web, and a Spotify playlist to increase our presence in the music social media space.
Our community needs respite from the news cycle and the harsh reality we all face. Music not only brings positivity and hope, but allows us to have hard conversations in a creative way, and bring our community together.