Former KWOD Personalities Launch Online Alternative Rock Radio Station

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Alternative rock radio is coming back to Sacramento...sort of.

Earlier this year, alternative rock station KWOD 106.5FM closed down when parent company Entercom Communications decided the station was better suited as an "all-90s" music station. The station's call letters changed to KBZC-FM and many familiar jock voices were released from their employment.

"The Sacramento market is one of the only major cities in the country not being served by a New Rock Alternative radio station," ex-KWOD employee Boomer Barbosa said. "I had plenty of opportunities at traditional radio out of town. I had no interest in going on the radio world tour."

Instead, Barbosa and several other former KWOD employees brainstormed an idea that would bring alternative rock back to Sacramento. Barbosa, along with KWOD jocks Andy Sims and "The Dave," launched ex1065.com -- a streaming online radio station aimed at bringing new alternative and local music back to Sacramento.

For Barbosa, the idea goes beyond playing new alternative music. At a time when corporate terrestrial radio is being pushed to play more Top 40 hits, Barbosa's station aims to bring about a local atmosphere to radio.

"There are a lot of great new rock alternative bands making special music that have no exposure on Sacramento radio," Barbosa said. "Sacramento has a great tradition of launching the careers of many globally-renowned bands. These bands could never have gotten off the ground without support on the local level early in their careers."

Though people may not be able to tune in to ex1065.com in the traditional sense, more and more methods of streaming the station are becoming available as technology improves. The station can be heard streaming on a personal computer, laptop and broadband web-enabled smartphones like the Blackberry and iPhone.

The landscape of traditional radio versus online radio may be changing as it is. According to a Bridge Ratings survey released earlier this year, more people are ditching terrestrial radio in favor of internet radio at an alarming rate.

Alarming, that is, if you're a corporation struggling to find an audience with traditional AM and FM radio. For Barbosa and some 15,000 other global internet broadcasters, the conditions for starting an online radio station have never been better.

Barbosa says ex1065.com has been in operation since November 2009 and plans an official launch sometime in January 2010. The station plans to promote at local concerts and venues throughout the Sacramento area, and will be financially supported through the placement of non-obtrusive advertisements and through a planned online store. The station is free to listen to and plans to launch on-demand podcasts sometime in the near future.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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