Why I decided not to buy Sirius XM for my car

When I first got my new car, I got three months free of Sirius XM.  After some poking around, I determined that I found 3 channels worth listening to:  Broadway, Classical, and Opera.  These were great because I find listening to classical or opera to be soothing and during my commute times the local public radio station is playing news, which I do not at all find to be soothing.  Although there are multiple choices for creepy racist talk radio, there is only one option for each of these.  (There’s also a billion sports channels, but I don’t begrudge them that.)

And, after three months, I realized that they don’t have a big rotation list.  Or rather, they may rotate different versions of the same piece from different musicians, but they heavily play the most popular music.  (Or in the case of the Broadway channel, they heavily play music I’m not crazy about.)

If I stuck with Sirius XM, I would likely get sick of some of my favorite operas, especially Tosca which they seem to play at least 2x a week when I’m in the car, particularly the jail scene which is lovely but… I don’t need to hear it quite so often.  And I would DEFINITELY get sick of Carmen which I’m fine with but already wasn’t one of my favorites.  I think the full opera has been on twice during my commute and they often play assorted songs from it.  During the summer I was able to explain part of Carmen to DC1 in the morning on the way to camp as part of the full opera and another part on the way back as a one-off.  Die Meistersinger and Don Giovanni are also a couple that I like that seem to be in pretty heavy rotation.  And some other Wagner that I don’t like so I switch channels.

So, instead I’ve asked DH and the kids to rip all my cds to a flash drive so I can listen in the car.  It is true that I own a copy of Tosca, but I don’t have to listen to it if I don’t want to.  I’ve also been playing more podcasts on my commute (I went through the entire backlist of By the Book this summer).   I also need to remember to spend more time listening to the Mexican stations (there are several that we’re not *quite* in range for, but when the weather is good we can usually get one or two of them to work) para practicar.

If Sirius XM were free, I think I’d still listen to it from time to time.  I do like it more than the local top 40 station.  The lack of commercials is lovely.  But I’m not sure there’s an actual price point that I feel like it’s worth getting.  Especially since it also supports so many crappy crappy evil talk radio stations.

What do you listen to in the car, if anything?  What is your ideal thing to listen to?

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