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Move Over, Pirate Radio: SomaFM Plays Tunes For The World


Ran across this San Francisco Chronicle story the other day.

SomaFM is a commercial-free, listener-supported, underground Web radio network broadcasting from a garage in the Bernal Heights neighbourhood of San Francisco.

Dedicated to high quality MP3 internet broadcasts reaching across the globe, SomaFM’s founder, Rusty Hodge — working with four other Bay Area residents whose music tastes have spun off stations like the indie-rock — broadcasts six RealAudio webcasts 24 hours a day.

The radio stations available range from the ambient beats and grooves of Groove Salad (RealPlayer / WinAmp required for each link), indie pop rocks, and the post-modern mysterioso of secret agent, to the blips ‘n’ beeps (backed w/beats) of cliqhop, the very tasty, atmospheric textures of drone zone, and the deep-house and downtempo chill of beat blender.

Among the salient features of the site (apart from the great music): a song history for each of the webcasts, linked to artist information; introduction to music you won’t hear elsewhere; and ... the broadcasts are all perfectly legal, given an arrangement SomaFM has negotiated with the RIAA.

Donations to SomaFM, through Paypal or’s Honor System, are gratefully accepted.

Posted by Raymond Tomlin at July 9, 2004 4:33 PM in Radio


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