In these past several months I had the pleasure of working at WFNX Radio, one of the first (and last) real alternative stations in America. With Pandora, Spotify, and others on the rise our generation has been turning to the internet to stream their favorite new artists as well as find great new bands. WFNX was already doing this back when they first came on the airwaves in 1983. They broke ground-breaking bands such as R.E.M., Nirvana, and the Foo Fighters, just to name a few. It’s literally heart-wrenching that a station so rooted in the Boston music scene is now going to be taken off life support, but it is definitely a sign of the times. Even though I’m 23 I grew up listening to the radio, and a lot of stations I grew up with in Maine have also become obsolete. Fast forward to 2012 where a station like WFNX, in a market like Boston, has no choice but to fall at the feet of the conglomerate Clear Channel – what does this say about the shift in the local music scenes all over America?
Aside from this major shift in the industry hitting too close to home, I can say that being at WFNX was a once in a lifetime experience. At a time where CDs are considered ancient and radio is a thing of the recent past – WFNX did things for the Boston music scene that no other radio stations did. Being a part of that family, only for several months, was an amazing experience that few others can also say they contributed to. The DJ’s were overzealous and passionate about the station that they called home. Henry and Julie to name a few made it their home for the past several decades, and I don’t know how many DJ’s who work for Clear Channel could say they feel the same way about their station. As one of the people present at the station when the news broke I could feel a grim and overwhelming sense of sadness throughout the room. Thanks again for taking me in as part of your family, WFNX.