Tell us a bit more about Interwebsradio – how did it start, why that name, and what are you all about?
Absolute horror and despair at the path terrestrial radio is taking, where celebrities pose as music DJs and play a tiny selection of music from a prescribed shrinking list of top 40 artists made a group of friends turn around and say, "Hey, we know and love some good music that never gets any airtime, and we know a bit of technology and business and web. Let's see where these things meet and make something interesting and diverse that people will be passionate about and love listening to.”
The name landed on our lips because we really wanted to avoid sounding cheesy. We failed at that, but a mashing together of the Interwebs and radio made the whole name pretty obvious. And it's surprisingly catchy – you don't have to remember it 'cause it does what it says on the box!
Our main aim right now is to build a station featuring the finest selection of new indie, great South African, and classic alternative music.
We want to share some of the amazing music that is being made every day around the world that nobody listens to anymore because they're stuck behind a combination brainwash of record company stagnation and boring "hit" radio.
We're trying to "undilute" radio and bring some colour back into a bleached – out market.
Do you also play South African music?
Currently just under 20% of our music played is South African music, from the likes of Valiant Swart and Albert Frost through Springbok Nude Girls and Wonderboom right up to Die Antwoord and Desmond & The Tutus. We're still building a catalogue of local albums, so that percentage should grow.
Why is online radio becoming more popular in comparison with, say, traditional FM radio?
Online radio is on a strong growth path because it gives listeners music they don't know they want to hear until they hear it. I've seen people's brains switch back on when they start listening to some of the beautiful stuff we play.
How much internet bandwidth does internet radio take up?
Listeners to our mobile stream would use about 24 megabytes an hour. Our high – quality stream uses 50 megabytes an hour.
You are the first South African streaming radio station to be listed in the iTunes radio catalogue. What exactly is this?
Apple maintains a catalogue of selected streaming stations that meet certain criteria. These stations' feeds are published inside the iTunes application, under the Radio section. Being in this catalogue means any user worldwide who opens iTunes just needs to click into Radio and select Interwebsradio.com from the Alternative section and they are listening to us. It makes it super – easy to tune in to our stream.
What is the next step for the station? What are your plans for the rest of the year?
We currently have our ongoing Friday Showcase series running, where we play a full feature album start to finish on Fridays at 12. We're also conducting outside broadcasts from events such as Park Acoustics, Mail & Guardian's SLOW listening sessions and album launches for artists at numerous venues in and around Joburg. We're looking at similar activities around a number of music events later in the year, eg Oppikoppi, FORR and others. Can't give it all away here, though.
We’re giving our team of "themed show" selectors/DJs a bit of a hurry – up so they start broadcasting their shows – a few of them have completed planning, so we need to spend some time identifying what the key listening times are and make sure we can target the listeners properly with this custom music content. Oh, and we obviously need to rustle up sponsors and money – we should probably try and pay for this all somehow! So yes, outside broadcasts, more regular "themed" shows and more money.
If any band or musician would like to submit their music to be played on the station, how do they go about doing that?
Simply email [email protected].