A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…wait!…wrong story! Anyway, some of you may have wondered why we named the station Bandwagon Network Radio. That’s actually not the original name…so let’s start at the beginning.
In 2013, I was working for the company that created the software that automates the Clear Channel radio stations (insider information: most of the DJs don’t live in your town & may not even be “live”), when I got to thinking about the path the industry had taken the past 13 years since Clear Channel (now iHeart Media) was born by the merger of two of the giants of radio broadcasting.
I didn’t like the path I was seeing. It was the era of cookie-cutter music & totally auto tuned music. As well as the out-of-control greed that can happen when you have direct licensing happening between the labels and the broadcasters. The digital age changed things too. Charts were now partially based on “listens” instead of sales. It was not the industry I grew up with pre-21st Century. The industry where Loretta Lynn & Dooley drove around the country & handed their 45 to a Country DJ hoping he’d give it a “spin”.
I originally worked for a sub-company of CC between 1999 & 2003 when the best they could do was send you the audio & a little text that said: “Now Playing:” along with the artist name & song title. TV shows like American Idol & others gave hope to the unknowns but they quickly appeared to become a way for labels & broadcasters to “mold” young hopefuls into their idea of what music should be.
So (yes, I digress sometimes)…..
I started thinking about all the musicians I had met over the years. Either because of my father’s band or because of people who worked as concert promoters. The regional bands hired to open for national bands. They were Independent Artists – no label; no opportunities to make records – just popular in the area where the national band was coming to perform.
And that’s when I started to think, “I have access to the most powerful software in radio broadcasting. What if I create a radio network that doesn’t play”mainstream” music. No labels; no contracts – nothing but DIY, just playing music for the love it artists. Like my father & other family members.
When I talked to friends about it, we had to come up with a name that would “jump out” & give a message of what we are all about. This idea was so crazy that we thought about the “bandwagon effect”. The bandwagon effect is an idea that sounds so good that people can’t wait to be part of it. Since we wanted to be worldwide with multiple stations we decided to create our Facebook page & originally named it: The Bandwagon Network. A short time later modified it to add Radio at the end. This allowed us to use the expression “Jump on the bandwagon & get your music heard”.
And you did!
Now, to quote the great Paul Harvey, you know “the rest of the story”.