For long stretches between population centers a radio, on a bicycle, is good. Stimulating talk shows can add another dimension to corn fields that stretch on for miles. Some people prefer music.
Radios also bring weather forecasts and crackling static on the AM band can warn one of nearby thunderstorms.
I don't were a headphone as it can be dangerous, due to the need to hear traffic. Placing the radio near handlebars and listening directly from the speaker usually works unless one is near noisy traffic.
AM Antenna Booster
To increase choice of stations, I have a special AM Radio antenna booster. Mine is called the Select-A-Tenna from the CCrane mail order company. It is basically just a certain length of wire, wound into a coil and then matched with a capacitor. All designed to "resonate" with AM signals.
Picture of antenna on my bike.
Most people would not think of carrying such a thing. The two extra pounds, it weighs, is a small price compared to not being able to get anything except Rush Limbaugh.
Often FM radio works better than AM. A wire and alligator clips, between the radio and bicycle frame, can turn one's whole bike into a crude FM antenna; if the bike is metallic. This doesn't work as well for AM.
Just figuring out how to strap this dinner plate looking AM antenna to a bike is the biggest challenge. (I drilled two holes through the flat face. Holes missed the working parts inside. There is a coil around the edge and a tuner in the middle. These things are connected by two little lead wires so the rest is air. I took an old one apart once.)
Then I tied a loop of bungy
cord through both holes. One end of the loop is across the face of
the antenna. The other end straps around a container on my front rack.
Antenna can be easily taken off.
Digital TV in parts of Bellingham,
WA. without cable. My
Radio label on my blog.