There are a ton of free music apps that allow you to create your own playlists, and yet I kept hearing from my local stations that they were available on iHeart Radio, an app that’s available for darn near any platform imaginable.
I couldn’t imagine why I’d want to try ANOTHER music app when my car radio was set up for Pandora and everything.
And then I got an email from EWTN announcing that EWTN Radio, the only station I missed from my days of owning a satellite radio, was now on the iHeart Radio app. It took approximately two minutes for me to find the app, download it, and start listening to it.
As I cranked up the app, signed in via Facebook, and searched for EWTN, I was practically jumping up and down. My kids thought that perhaps I’d had a bit too much coffee, but understood the reason for my excitement as soon as Dr. Ray’s voice came through the speaker on my iPhone.
“It’s Dr. Ray!!” I squealed. (Yes, squealed. I love Dr. Ray, and I’ve met him, and he even wrote on a note to my younger daughter on the back of one of his business cards because I told him that she loved him, too.)
So, yes, I’ve been listening to EWTN Radio a lot lately. I’ve noticed that I don’t seem to be making the most of my data plan (leaving a lot of unused data at the end of every month), so I’ve even taken to plugging in the phone to the USB port on my radio and streaming it as I drive to and from ballet, tap, soccer, Adoration, Mass, the grocery store… Very, very exciting for me! (Mind you, watch your data usage, people! Don’t get carried away and listen to it non-stop on a road trip from Ohio to Disney World if your data plan doesn’t allow for that kind of thing!)
Some other features of iHeart Radio
You can find stations from other cities, which could be nice if you miss a particular radio station from, say Orlando, who has a terrific gardening show on Saturday mornings that just blows away the ones from the local area. (So what if Palmetto plants won’t grow in the Blue Ridge Mountains?)
Or if there’s a Christian music station that you picked up on a road trip to South Dakota that was really cool with almost no commercials. I’ve been playing around with adding Christian music stations from around the country.
set up virtual, custom stations without commercials that play a certain genre of music.
Were you a hair-band-metal-lover in high school? Set up a station based on bands similar to Def Leppard, Bon Jovi, Poison or Whitesnake.
Were you a teenaged Durany? Set that as a main band for a new station.
Are you a fan of Big & Rich? Select them as an artist to base a station around.
Once you’ve done that, there’s a little “tuner” dial you can set. The settings allow for “Familiar,” “Mixed,” and “Less Familiar,” with each step mixing in more variety within the music genre you’ve chosen. So if you’re looking to discover some new artists, there ya’ go!
There is an option to turn off explicit lyrics, but this will limit your ability to create custom stations.
And the online portal is great, too! As I write this, I’m listening to the end of Mass on EWTN. But I could have chosen to listen to my Journey custom station, too, if I could resist singing into a hairbrush every time “Don’t Stop Believing” came on. (Don’t laugh. My kids join in!)
And there are holiday music stations, too. So if you want to listen to Frank Sinatra singing “Mistletoe and Holly,” you’ve got it! If you like country-style Christmas music, there’s a station for that. Prefer hip, new versions of Christmas songs? Crank up that station instead. (No, there isn’t an Advent Channel. Sorry!)
Sometimes it takes a bit of toggling around to find the right mix, but I’m finding it pretty easy to use, and I’m busy setting up custom stations that can fit whatever mood I happen to be in at the moment.
But the biggest reason for me was to get that feed of EWTN Radio on the go–that’s why I’ve become a big fan of iHeart Radio. For a lot of people who live in areas with small Catholic populations, EWTN Radio is an oasis, and unless you had satellite radio, chances were you wouldn’t be able to listen to it.
Yes, it streams on the internet, but for me, I rarely actually stream TV or radio on my computer. But the idea that I could use some of my data to occasionally catch Catholic Answers Live or Fr. Mitch Pacwa on my phone streaming through my radio…well, that was an easy yes for me.
iHeart Radio is available online, for iDevices, Android devices, Windows devices, Kindle Fire, Blackberry, Google TV, and XBox! You’d be hard-pressed to find a platform that you CAN’T use it on.
Copyright 2012 Christine Johnson