When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson

08 July 2007

Etherbeat, R.I.P.

The audio soundscape on the Net just got a little less interesting: Etherbeat, a net radio station that played wonderful, sometimes obscure jazz, funk and world-beat music, has closed its virtual doors.
It's with a great deal of regret that I am announcing the closure of Etherbeat Radio.

Proposed legislative changes are signalling a new climate for internet radio in which enthusiast stations like Etherbeat can't survive. Besides this, I've just found it to be too much about business and paperwork lately and not enough about music AND I'm all out of cash! So it really is time to move on to something different...

Subscribers were tipped off via e-mail on Friday that this was going to happen--and I got confirmation this morning that the site was closed for business (see above).

The promise of the Internet, for creative types, has always been that with enough connectivity, there is an audience for every taste.

There might not be twenty-five people in your hometown who would have cared to listen to Etherbeat (I'm betting there were a lot more than that) but worldwide, the potential audience might have easily numbered in the millions.

Whatever else it was, Etherbeat was a labor of love, and largely a one-man show; JC poured his heart and soul into the operation, and while there were shortages of cash at the end and exasperation with the legislative machinations currently underway, there was never any shortage of love. You could hear it in the music every day.

As I wrote to my Congressional reps a few months back:
Internet-based broadcasters are filling a culturally important role by providing high-quality alternatives to the homogenized dreck that flows over the public airwaves. They are offering music lovers a choice and presenting an incredibly diverse palette of musical styles and options to their listeners.
With Etherbeat gone, the dreck quotient just went up a little.

The mourners are checking in.

For me -- well, my days will be a little longer without Etherbeat streaming through the speakers of my work PC.

JC, you're the reason I bought a subwoofer for my work rig. ;-) And let me tell you, brother, you sold a lot of records... I can't tell you how many CDs I bought after first hearing an artist on Etherbeat.

Be well, and good luck with whatever's next for you.

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