Monday, September 29, 2014

New radio station seeks to reveal the Springs' underrepresented

Posted By on Mon, Sep 29, 2014 at 2:17 PM

click to enlarge kcmj-radio-logo-transparent-bg2-e1409672146210.png
There's a growing sentiment, most easily seen in this manifesto, that Colorado Springs' media doesn't do an adequate job of giving voice to those in the minority by virtue of their race, income or sexual orientation. And while the charge is probably accurate, the effort is always being made — at least by everybody I know — so it's nice to see additional sources springing up, sources like new radio station KCMJ.

Founded by former Colorado House of Representatives member Dennis Apuan and launched Sept. 21, 93.9 FM plans to start broadcasting community radio in 2015 from a station near Jet Wing Drive and South Academy Boulevard. (Programming airs online, currently.) It's a low-power station, meaning it will only reach approximately a quarter of the city at first, but it will headquarter in, and tell some of the stories of, one of the poorest, most economically neglected areas of town.

"At first, our local, original program offerings will be limited," says programming chair Arlene Hall in a press release, "but we'll add programs as hosts, producers and needed equipment come online." Hall later expanded in a roundtable that the focus will be on two things: talk and music. Talk will include public affairs, local news and spoken word, while music will be eclectic, similar to what you might find on KRCC: jazz shows, Celtic hours, '80s playlists, local bands and independent artists.

But the bootstrapped effort can't do it without equipment and transmitters and towers, so the station is running an Indiegogo campaign until Nov. 13 in an attempt to raise $20,000. So far, it's brought in around $2,400. As far as rewards, $35 gets you a one-year radio membership; a sticker; discounted drinks at the Nov. 13 launch party at Ivywild School; and a pound of free beef from Ranch Foods Direct.

"There is a thirst in our city for radio that plays more than Top 20 Hits, radio that focuses on everything local, and radio that celebrates all the good that’s happening here," reads the campaign. "A station that respects its audience, promotes diversity, and gives a voice to those who are under-represented."

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