Radio Waves: 8/5/16

Out of sound, out of mind?

Last week I suggested how nice it would be to have a radio station with a more open playlist … playing both old and new songs from new and established artists. Freeform radio, as is being done by low-powered KZAP/Sacramento.

Then the emails came.

“It would be nice to get underground broadcasts back on the airwaves. Do you remember the old KPPC 106.7 circa late sixties?  KSCN (88.5 FM) comes close today. The music never stops.” — Randy Lloyd, Los Angeles

“I read with interest your column on the new KZAP in Sacramento. I do have to point out that except for 7-Horse whom I’ve never heard of, all of the other artists mentioned have all gotten great airplay on 88.5 KCSN-FM. I consider it the best L.A. radio station in the last 20 years. All they do is play good music. Imagine that. I sure do remember Ace Young. Glad to hear he is still around and doing good.” — William Dunaway

“Try listening to KCSN.org 88.5 FM.” — Joe Ruiz

“Smart rock KCSN is the station you say we don’t have. It is brilliant and the Nuys is amazing. And sky Daniels is very irreverent” — Pat Gorman

Even KCSN programmer Sky Daniels wrote in … “KCSN’s mission is to support musicians. We are privileged to do so in Los Angeles. If you review KCSN’s Playlist at kcsn.org/playlist/ I think you will find it is exactly the station you wished L.A. had.”

Yes, I messed up. Not sure why, though my excuse is that it is a case of being “out of mind” due to the fact that I cannot pick up the station where I live over the air. Bit the excuse is somewhat hollow, due to the fact that I have covered KCSN at least a few times in the past and as mentioned above, it IS available via streaming.

In speaking with Daniels I found that the KCSN engineers are working on a signal expansion, so the station may indeed come in further outside of the valley. Until then, I’m tuning in through kcsn.org/listen.html.

Saving Martini

Brad Chambers is the man behind MartiniInTheMorning.Com, an internet station playing the music he once played as programmer and morning man on KLAC and XETRA (The Fabulous 570 and later Fabulous 690).

The problem with internet-based stations is that it’s tough to compete with the Big Boys for advertising and support dollars. So Chambers recently sent a message asking for listener support.

“We are facing past royalties of tens of thousands of dollars, plus associated legal fees, he wrote. “It’s not that we wanted to skirt the law. It’s that we couldn’t afford the royalties and the expenses related to reporting. But we made a commitment more than 10 years ago that as long as artists put out great music we would give them a place, on the air and onstage, to expose their music and sell CDs, downloads and tickets to their live performances. We made a commitment too, to our listeners, to keep this music on the air even after it was largely abandoned by the major corporate broadcasters and record companies.

“If everyone who has ‘Liked’ MartiniInTheMorning on our Facebook page will do as little as $10, that would be a game changer. We have 14,323 likes on our Facebook page. $143,230 if everyone chipped in $10. So PLEASE don’t feel like your $10 or $20 or $25 won’t make a difference. If you are able or want to do more, do it. The faster we put this problem behind me, the faster we can get back to the business of playing the greatest songs ever written for you.”

Saving AM?

There’s been much talk about “revitalizing AM.” One of the solutions is to use FM translators — low powered FM transmitters — to simulcast the AM signal. That’s right: “save” AM by moving people to FM.

Here’s a better thought: program something that people want to hear. I’m not sure what that is never mentioned in these discussions.

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