Cant say enough about this. A great way to kill two birds with one stone, get local bands and musicians on the air on your station. It's pretty basic, after you have hit up some of those websites that allow royalty free music for downloading and playing, hit up local talent and get their music on your station.
I have done that and find that the local players are ready and willing to get their product on the air, and will usually send you the material in mp3 format, all ready to go, and it is free, from my experience. Set out a block of broadcast time just to play the local flavor.
I get great feedback and lots of good ideas and new submissions once the word gets out that there is a new outlet for the struggling musician.
What to talk about? Hmmmmm, here i originally thought it was going to be difficult, and I can understand that most folks are not sure what to say when on the air.
Personally, i think it is best to go with your strength(s). What does that mean? Simple really, what do you know best? Is what you know best, what your listener will want to know? If so, you are good to go.
But, what happens if you specialty, isnt something readily accessible to your audience? This of course leads into, Know Your Audience.
How do you know your audience? You can base it on your own interactions with folks in terms of feed back you receive.
I am setup to get live texting from within facebook messenger, as well as a feedback form right on my home page.
If folks like your music, thru their feedback to you, simply ask what they want to hear from you. For example:
This is my neighborhood, right outside my front door. I have lived here all my life, and so do a lot of my listeners, thus I decided to talk about this area, the people, places and things that make it special. You can do this too, dont be embarrassed, tell your story about your life in your special part of the world. It's a big part of making and giving your studio a 'home', because when you have visitors to your home, you need to make them feel welcome, and you do that by sharing. Your studio isnt just some cold place to conducte business and play music. It is a place to share your heart and soul with your listeners, thru not only music, but thru your very life and experiences.
Now, what is this in the second pic? Simple, things that mean a lot to me. I keep a journal. I have kept one for almost 20 years now. This is just one book ive been keeping to record my thoughts, my life, all of it, and i mean all of it. This gives me a lot of ideas about how to tie in my life with personal facts, with my talking about the place that I live and love. A lot of this, folks can identify with, and that makes it easier to share.
My bible is there too, and that is because my part of Pittsburgh is very catholic, very faith based, very old school. Again, without me 'preaching', I can speak to folks on this very personal level, and make a connection. You need to do taht, make a connection, your heart, your soul, your life and your loves, and get that back from your listeners, just be yourself.
So, you want to be on the air, over the interwebs, eh? If you have been reading these blog entries, we mention bits and pieces of what you need to make it all come together, without breaking the bank. Let's take a look at 10 things you need.
First things first and obviously most important, you need a pc or mac, with internet and if you want to do more than just play music, or streaming, and want to do the whole DJ bit, you will need some sort of microphone.
I have a simple headset microphone setup for myself, I just feel more comfortable with it. If you so desire, a simple usb plug in microphone will work too, just make sure it is decent quality so your audience can understand you.
If you want some separate headphones a good choice would be something like this from Beyerdynamic in the left, or a reasonable combo headset and mic like i use..
Next recommendation is a mixer, although to be honest, i do not use one and havent noticed any major issues. The mixer is to take the input from various items like a mic, a turntable, etc, and give you some control over at making the output of these various items more balanced for your audience. Again, maybe once you are really going hot and heavy with your show after some time, it may be worth looking at for your next purchase.
Next in line is a broadcasting deck, which is just a glorified mixer, but again, it adds to your ability to produce a higher quality sound of your broadcast. Once again, from my opinion, this is a non essential unless you are really going full bore into radio broadcasting, but i just wanted to throw it out there for you.
If you do decide on a mixer or a deck, or both, the sound improvement will really only take place if you update your microphone, the standard at many radio stations is the Electro Voice RE320, it's a bit pricier than the usual, but if you have laid out cash for mixers and decks, you are ready for this one mic as well.
Even consider getting a boom arm to connect the mic to, and that arm connects to your desk where you are broadcasting from, as well as a pop filter to keep you from, as they say, 'Popping your P's'. You can see the one below comes with such a filter already attached. And really one last item(s) would be some sort of sound proofing material, not just to keep things down so to speak, but to again, have your listeners hear what you want them to hear, and not background noise bleeding into your show.
Ok, real simple, podcasting continues to be a raging success the world over and that includes what you can do by using software like Airtime Pro. Let's go over it in a bit more detail because I did touch on Podcasting in an earlier blog entry.
Not only does Airtime Pro get you and your station up and broadcasting, but it has a built in podcast feed and hosting, as well as being compatible with both itunes and pocketcast.
I mentioned in an earlier post that i simply recorded myself for an hour doing some observations of my growing up in my local Pittsburgh area, and then uploaded it as a regular track for an hour long show, technically, it was my podcast, but not really a podcast as the software can set it up for you. Here's a link so you can walk through setting up your own podcast with Airtime Pro: www.airtime.pro/how-to-publish-a-podcast-with-airtime-pro/
It can really give your podcasting a shot in the arm and through this easy to follow step-by-step, you can be podcasting in no time.
Just as an aside, if you have an android phone, there is an app called Anchor, available from the google app store, where you can sign up for free, and literally run/produce a podcast from your phone. It might be worth a look if you dont want to go through Airtime.pro, or whatever software you may be using.
have been using BUTT (Broadcast Using This Tool), the open source software app that allows for live broadcasting in conjunction with Airtime Pro, however there is some new news on that front. Rocket Broadcaster has teamed up with Airtime Pro building in a link within the software to download and launch RB that allows you to go live(WINDOWS ONLY AT THIS POINT):
It is very easy to configure and you are up and running within a few minutes.
There is a Setup Live Source button in the top right corner of the Airtime pro software, once you click this button it steps you through a wizard to download and setup the app for use with Airtime Pro
I was a college dj and loved it. I had my own show, my own time slot, my own playlist (late nite was much more forgving) Starting a station is a lot easier today than it was at the heyday of college radio in the 1990s. Hell, even in my own time in the 80's, it was a great place to learn the craft before it all became 'push button', and discovering bands before the average listener to FM, well, that was a perk that I loved.
Here we are in 2019, and thanx to the internet and great sofware packages like Airtime Pro, things are really taking off. It's a great way to find the next big thing and the flexibility of type of format makes it so appealing to aspiring dj's and their listeners. More and more radio stations are online-only, taking advantage The big thing is that now two things are covered at once, it's cost-effective and easy to set up.
Going thru the hoops and paperwork to get a real broacast license is a royal pain, to say the least. Get yourself online and let'er rip. Here are some steps recommeneded by Airtime Pro, which is what i use:
Step 1: Put together programming ideas and station identity
From the start, define the purpose of the station and specific ideas for shows, documenting it all in as much detail as possible. Programming is the heart and soul of a radio station, and you probably already have a good idea of what percentage of airtime will be dedicated to playing different genres of music, discussing news and broadcasting talk shows, live performances and special events. Put it in writing, and keep refining as ideas for the station’s identity and content evolve.
Step 2: Build a team
Much of your station’s programming will depend upon the team you put together. Radio is by no means a one-person effort, so reach as far as possible into the campus community. Canvas professors, fellow students, even alumni–and don’t forget about those lovable engineering students–to see who’s interested in participating. Pooling ideas and talent from a diverse group with different skills, backgrounds and passions is a surefire way to establish the foundation for a vibrant college radio station that will stand the test of time.
Step 3: Write and submit your campus radio station proposal
Write a formal proposal and submit it to your school’s administration outlining initial and yearly budgets, the purpose of the station and programming, day-to-day management and staffing, and studio space and technology requirements. For detailed help on writing a proposal for a campus radio station, HobbyBroadcaster.net has an excellent guide.
Step 4: Build your studio space
Assuming you’ve submitted a serious proposal and put together a solid team, chances are good that your school’s administration will see the educational value and give your station the go ahead. For studio space, you don’t want to operate out of a janitor’s closet, but a space of 8-feet-by-8-feet would seem to be the bare minimum. Ideally, your station’s studio would consist of at least three rooms, one for normal broadcasting operations, another where you can spread out and do things like host live performances by local or visiting bands, and another to be used for storage or as a waiting area for guests and DJs waiting to go on shift. One of our partner stations, Titon Radio (CSUF) at Cal State Fullerton, has such a setup and operates out of the basement of the university’s library. We’ve put together a handy guide that details “10 Essential Pieces of Equipment” to get you started on building out a studio.
Step 5: Start broadcasting and promoting your station
Now it’s time to put all your planning and hard work into action. Fortunately, our internet radio broadcasting software is super easy to set up, and with Airtime Pro you can be on air in minutes. See our Step-to-Step Guide to setting it up, which also has ideas on branding and promoting your station.
So, go forth and build upon the independent, colorful history of college radio. Think of it as a collegial broadcasting laboratory, a link to jobs in the recording industry, which at every level is peopled with campus radio alumni. And, with a little luck, your station may even be the first to air the breakout song–think “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, which launched the career of ‘90s grunge gods Nirvana when first played on college station KXLU in Los Angeles–of the next great band.