On Thursday I had the opportunity to participate in the launch of a new radio station. Roundhouse Radio began broadcasting live on October 15th, 2015. At a time when media outlets are cutting back or folding, a group of brave people have decided to invest in a new station. I do wish them luck.
I learned about Roundhouse Radio a couple of months ago when some people approached me to see if I would be interested in appearing on their shows. Of course I said yes! Kirk LaPointe (yes that Kirk LaPointe) will be doing the morning show from 6am to 9am each weekday morning. Joannah Connolly of the Real Estate Weekly REW.ca will be doing a real estate show on Saturday mornings. I look forward to appearing on Kirk's show from time to time, but hopefully not before 7 am. I also look forward to joining Joannah on Saturday mornings, whenever it's not raining, since Saturday morning is usually golf. I need the exercise.
This past Thursday the station had a party to celebrate its beginning. As I drove to the studio I listened to a very engaging interview with Andrea Reimer, The party was taking place in the studio, which, I might add, was much more impressive than I expected.
At 6pm I joined Marty Strong who will be hosting a daily 'indie' show from 6pm to 9pm. This time I was joined by Tyee journalist David P Ball. We talked about housing and real estate and the art gallery and viaducts. Hopefully it was of some interest to whoever was listening.
In future, Marty will be followed at 9pm by Rhona Raskin, who I once listened to religiously. Her show is called Love + Lust. The only way I'll get on that show is to talk about a book from my library, Sex and Real Estate! You can see the full weekly schedule here.
There are a lot of familiar radio and media personalities at Roundhouse Radio including a few who escaped from CKNW. The goal of the station is to be very local, and give a voice to Vancouver personalities.
Not knowing a lot about the station's history I decided to look it up on Wikipedia. CIRH-FM (98.3 FM) is described as a new urban talk radio station with music doing business as Roundhouse Radio. The idea for the station came in 2012. Don Shafer, his partner Yvonne and a few friends were discussing what they would do if they owned a radio station and wrote the ideas on the back of a napkin from the Alibi Room. Their idea was to create a radio station that was very local and inclusive, different than traditional talk radio stations and more like CBC, NPR and the BBC.
CIRH was licensed on August 6, 2014 by the CRTC which described the station format as “niche spoken word” targeting adults aged 25 to 64 in Vancouver. Control of the station is exercised by Pushor Family Holding Corp., Okanagan Valley Business Consulting Ltd., Daudrich 2007 Family Trust and Craig and Candace Cameron, Don Shafer and Yvonne Evans, collectively Roundhouse Radio. The station broadcasts on FM 98.3, a low-power station covering the city of Vancouver. The studios and offices are located in Railtown at 714 Alexander at Heatley.
This is not a non-profit venture. They hope to make some money, and will be depending on advertising. As someone who listens to a lot of radio, I suggested to Craig and Candace that it will be important for them to have clever and entertaining commercials, as well as entertaining content, ....since often crass or annoying commercials can be a real turn-off. They are certainly one of the reasons why I often turn off CKNW. Although I must confess, now that Bill Good is gone, I listen to it much less than I used to. I'm told I am not alone.
In writing this post, I hope you will consider making 98.3 FM one of your car radio favourite stations and listen for a while; and I won't be too upset if you change the station if you hear my voice.
Best wishes for success Roundhouse Radio 98.3!