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Monday, February 11, 2008 - 06:23 PM

Jad plays one of his favorite pieces of all time, 'IF' by Sherre DeLys.

We've been getting some emails from some of you who are confused about the varying lengths of our podcasts: some are long, some are short. Fear not! There's nothing wrong with your download. That's the way it should be. Sometimes we podcast an entire hour-long episode. Sometimes we podcast a shorter piece that may only be 8 minutes or so. That's just how we roll.




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Comments [25]


I got it. Unfortunately, I got it.

Dec. 25 2010 03:29 AM

I have recently discovered Radio Lab am in love with it but have listened to all eprisodes, and am hanging out. what is the next best thing in podcasts to radio lab. Paddy

Feb. 24 2008 03:09 AM
Dayle Ann

Knowing took nothing away from the beauty of this piece- the total immersion in right now. I found myself soaring and tearing up at the same time. By listening carefully, it showed me something within myself. A good thing to know about. And yeah, the piece doesn't really have to make sense to appreciate it. But it adds a dimension when you do "get it". Just listen and let it take you with it. Soar.

Feb. 19 2008 09:50 AM
Fabrice DeClerck

Great show guys, I loved Ring, and Salle des Departs, I hope that we do get to listen to it commercially at some point.

For "if" I think that the problem is Jad advising us that we will get it. Is there something to get? Or is it simply a piece to reflect on, to muse and consider what if I were..... Scott's comment on speculation of reincarnation is interesting... We've all as children, and as adults too probably considered what if I was a bird, born in Africa, could fly etc... Andrew never states what if I was well.

Feb. 19 2008 01:43 AM

Wonderful! The musical additions do well at highlighting the human emotion. This is the kind of thing that makes me aspire to be involved in audio production.

Feb. 18 2008 11:25 PM
Jad from Radio Lab

Hi Zach. Unfortunately, David Lang's composition isn't available commercially, as far as I know. We wish it were!

Feb. 18 2008 06:44 PM

Has the David Lang piece we heard from Salle Des Departs been released in any form? iTunes has a track by Scanner from and album titled: "Salles des départs: Hôpital Raymond-Poincaré, Garches". In the podcast he says he hopes no one ever has to hear that piece, but it's really quite lovely.

Feb. 16 2008 07:41 PM
Jad from Radio Lab

Hey peeps, Jad here! Here's the behind the scenes story of If, as I understand it: Sherre was asked by the New Children's Hospital at Westmead to create a sound installation for the kids there (i think that was her original mission, if memory serves). In any case, while there, she bumps into Andrew, a child with a powerful imagination. The two wander the grounds together (the hospital has gardens and an aviary), she asking him a series of "what if" questions (what if you were a bird?)...and he responds in the moment with these marvelous flights of fantasy. She later had a cellist improvise to Andrew's answers, and voila. I also wish I knew more about what happened to Andrew.

Feb. 16 2008 12:48 PM

Was it speculation on reincarnation "if"?

Feb. 14 2008 04:42 PM

The Knife. “if i was a bird…”
> that is a great song- thanks!

Feb. 14 2008 03:14 PM

Here's a link to a piece she did on the Nature Stories podcast. enjoy!

Feb. 14 2008 02:16 PM
Scientist Maggie

I also LOVED the "if" piece and am curious to hear more of her stuff. Any luck, Rob?

Also enjoying the new blog! Finally a place that I can discuss all the wonderful things I hear on the show!

Feb. 14 2008 02:01 PM
Peter McRae

Loved "If". Lyrical and beautiful. It doesn't have to make sense.

McRae Creative

Feb. 14 2008 01:46 PM

Reminded my of a great song by The Knife. "if i was a bird..."


Feb. 13 2008 04:18 PM

you can find more work by sherre delys here: and here:


Feb. 13 2008 10:10 AM

I just heard that WUGA in Athens, GA is now broadcasting Radiolab at 3:00 on Fridays.

This is great, as I'm now addicted to the show, but also because it means one hour less of classical music.

I'll still be listening to podcasts as that's not a convenient time, but I assume it's good news for the show.

Feb. 13 2008 09:18 AM

Oh I haven't heard this in a loooong time! Thanks for posting it!

Feb. 13 2008 08:52 AM
Chris Bakos

This is the second piece from Radio Lab that reminded me of composer Scott Johnson's "John Somebody" where he takes a phrase of speech and turns it into a symphony of guitar and synths.

Feb. 13 2008 12:58 AM

Anyone know where I could find more Sherre Delys recordings?

Feb. 12 2008 09:38 PM

I loved the IF piece, I've listened to it about 3 times already, just today. I agree with Andrew, seems to be a child giving his interpretation on his hospital experience. Great piece, and really want to hear more. love the crocodile part.

Feb. 12 2008 09:30 PM

I just want to know how the poor kid is doing - whether the biopsy came out ok. He sounds so young and full of life.

Feb. 12 2008 06:27 PM

Sounds as though Sherre took a microphone into the children's hospital and caught some sounds of speculation... probably quite a bit of that going on in a children's hospital, kids using their imagination to while away the time. maybe mentally escape an unpleasant situation.

It seems quite a hopeful sort of piece to me, the speaker seeking-out/imagining new perspectives on a situation he compares disfavorably to that of a potted plant.

anyhow that's my take on it.

Feb. 12 2008 03:20 PM

I'm with Forrest. Can anyone shed some light on the "if" piece? I feel exceedingly dumb right now.

Feb. 12 2008 02:47 PM

I just think of them as bonus episodes. Which is great by me as long as we still get the "main" 5 episodes every season (I'd like to see more than that).

Think of these as tasty appetizers while we wait.

Feb. 12 2008 06:58 AM

I still don't get it...

Feb. 12 2008 12:08 AM

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