Perhaps I should first reiterate THIS SITE IS NOT RUN BY, NOR IN ANY WAY AFFILIATED WITH, THE ACTUAL KCRW WEBSITE! I'm no internet lawyer but because this fan site is kind of run without any tacit support of KCRW, I just want to keep throwing this caveat out there in the hopes that if they discover it they don't try to shut me down for impersonation or whatever (please, please, don't ask me to shut this down KCRW!). This page has been done purely out of a love for their fantastic radio station and nerdy curiosity. If you enjoy this site (which is a 100% guarantee, easy) I urge you to support KCRW by becoming a monthly sponsor. Financially supporting their great music and programming will also indirectly allow this page to continue running.
Backstory... During grad school at UCLA, when I'd get home from campus my roommate (Damien, who helped accelerate load times with the database) and I would turn on the radio to KCRW and go through the night coding simulations or writing papers or, sometimes , drinking lots of beer and playing video games. Then in the morning it was MBE for 3 hours before finally getting back into the lab. Over time, it became an inescapable mainstay in our apartment. I think the very beginning idea of this site started one night after a few beers when Damien was bitching about not being able to find the "currently playing" song on the KCRW website. Originally I thought I'd find the backend code on the KCRW site and build a twitter bot that would tweet DMs to him to tell him all currently played songs and be both extremely annoying and also informative. Insodoing, I found I could pull ALL play data from KCRW so I abandoned the twitter-annoy-bot and began to search through their play history just to see if it could be done. From there it was more or less an academic interest in whether I could turn that data into a website that displayed it in some semi-pretty fashion.
This site allows you to check out the play history from KCRW -- going all the way back to 1992, the earliest data I could scrape from KCRW. You have the option of viewing the play history via the many hosts of KCRW, or the artists and songs played over the years. By default, I filter for just the last year so my database queries don't take forever to load on your first experience.
One long term dream plan is to open access to the database with an API so one could submit arbitrary queries if one was so inclined. But this is a side hobby and for now there's very simple viewing options.
I'd recommend the desktop experience because I haven't yet figured out a way to make the plots display properly on small phone screens. So, buyer beware.
Damien helped with cleaning up of the site's database after a few years of watching it flounder. He's an ok web programmer and you can find his blog here.
"I didn't 'clean up', thanks. This site was a slow ass monstrosity that I brought to somewhat acceptable speeds, you're welcome, nottobeforgetting sage advice throughout its development." - Damien
For updates and/or discussions of interesting observations, read the KCRW-relevant posts on my blog.