I grew up on AM radio.

When I was a kid in the Bangor area, AM radio was just as valid as FM. Most of the FM stations in my youth were focused on the current hits, and lacked any kind of gritty edge. But there was Z62 on the AM dial to keep rock alive. There were more deep cuts, and they seemed genuinely interested in rocking just a little harder than their contemporaries.

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Over time, it seemed most AM stations gave up most of their music, and became all talk. Whether it was sports, or news, or both... FM kept the tunes rolling and AM switched things up a bit to try and stay relevant. And while AM stations don't necessarily carry the clout they used to, they still have an important purpose. So why are auto manufacturers trying to get rid of it?

There is a semi-reasonable explanation.

retro cassette tape over a white background

There are some features of radios in cars that have slowly gone away over the years. You don't really see a tape deck anymore, let alone the 8-track players you may have even seen in cars in the late 70's - early 80's. Heck, some cars don't even have CD players at this point, and opt for  a plug-in/blue tooth option for your phone.

Photo by Matt Benson on Unsplash
Photo by Matt Benson on Unsplash

But some car makers, like Tesla for instance, claim that the AM signal within the vehicle could cause critical interference that could disrupt vehicle operations. While that is a valid point, ardent supporters of keeping AM radio in cars argue that the AM signal is crucial to provide critical traffic, storm, and weather updates to drivers and farmers, according to WGME.

Is anyone trying to stop this from happening?

Very much so... Maine's two senators, Susan Collins and Angus King, have both signed on to try and keep AM radio in cars and trucks, especially for emergency purposes. But also, there are millions of people out there who still enjoy AM radio as a listener. Whether it be sports, talk, or news, AM radio has a strong following nationwide.

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At this time, there aren't any major decisions happening in either direction, but the idea has gained a lot of bipartisan traction at the federal level. But if it's any indicator, Ford recently backed off their decision to pull the radios, based on pushback from consumers. So cross your fingers, but it'll probably all work out in the end.

Your bound to find songs on here from the glory days of AM radio, that's why they're so awesome... Check it out...

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