CBC Radio 2 Concerts on Demand

CBC Radio 2 has an excellent Concerts on Demand feature on its website. Unfortunately it’s rendered as a set of web pages that makes easy browsing of the entire canon cumbersome, and because the links to tracks are trapped inside ASX files it’s harder for non-Windows users to get at the music itself (every time I tried to listen to a concert in Firefox on my Mac about 25 empty tabs would inexplicably spring open).

To help expose this resource to a wider audience, I’ve hacked together one big page that lists every concert and every track, in reverse chronological order.

This isn’t intended to be a pretty page, but rather a dead simple one. It’s intended to make using players like MPlayer and VideoLAN to listen to the concerts easier. It doesn’t actually do anything other than index the files on the CBC media server differently.

For the technically-minded among you, the key to the whole process is http://www.cbc.ca/radio2/cod/ajax.php, a handy URL that returns JSON about the concerts. It’s not optimized for use as an external API, so there’s some post-processing of the chunks of HTML table code that it returns, but the data is structured enough so that this isn’t arduous.


Chris Corrigan's picture
Chris Corrigan on December 8, 2009 - 00:15 Permalink

Very nice work Peter. Does this call the most recent updated page of CoD, or will you have to manually update as concerts are added?

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on December 8, 2009 - 00:43 Permalink

I have a script, that I’ll publish shortly, that does all the “grabbing and processing” and that can be set to run every day automatically (it’s not set up this way yet).

kerry231's picture
kerry231 on February 1, 2010 - 17:35 Permalink

Great tips! I was trying to use the site a few months back and had no idea why all those dang tabs kept opening. Needless to say, I gave up! I never had that problem with sites for tickets to U2.