Radio was a novel and exciting medium for classical music in the 1930s. Copland always enjoyed the challenge of something new, so he welcomed a commission from CBS for an orchestral work specifically for their network. He used several special effects, such as muted trumpets, woodwinds at the microphone, and a vibraphone. A contest for the title was announced, and the winner was Music for Radio, Saga of the Prairie. The piece was later renamed Prairie Journal.
-Vivian Perlis, 1998