>> By Colin Titsworth
Published in Summer 2012, Issue #29
Stoke FM surged onto the FM bandwidth this past December. The new radio station is 95 per cent musical content and an avenue for local musicians to be heard.
Scott Duke developed Stoke FM and explains: “We wanted to make a radio station that offered an alternative to what was already available to Revelstokians, while also creating a place where locals can be involved.”
Regularly structured programming has local volunteers hosting shows sure to broaden your musical awareness. There is also a live morning segment three days a week featuring community news and local guest speakers who bring attention to their causes.
When asked about the local music scene, Scott says, “There is an incredible amount of musical talent in Revelstoke. You just have to go to one Coffee House [performance at the United Church] to experience that. One band from Revelstoke that performed in-studio and left a memorable experience was Stuck On Honey, which is the well-known duo comprised of Dennis Severino and Maggie Davis, both locals. Mitch Mckinnon, also living in Revelstoke, is an up-and-coming DJ earns a mention as well because people sometimes forget it takes a lot of skill to produce a solid mix or beat.
Stoke FM is putting forth all efforts to keep the two-way communication flowing by reaching out on Twitter, Facebook and internet streaming so listeners can provide feedback and have input into what type of music is played. People can also submit requests or their own music if they have something specific they want to hear. The gang at Stoke FM is listening to Revelstoke as much as the other way around.
“Our greatest surprise with Stoke FM is how the community has been so supportive. It has also been great that people in town have been so accepting of the station’s imperfections as it grows. We know our signal is not the best, our mics are pretty crap and our mixing board was a hand-me down,” says Scott.
Instead of boring commercial breaks this radio station pauses between songs with catchy jangles and quick airtime plugs for local businesses. Companies who have associated themselves with the radio station provide discounted products or services for individuals who have purchased a $45 Stoke Card. These cards can be acquired directly at the studio or from their website. Starting in June, you will see them available at various locations around town.
“Revelstoke’s music scene is only going to get better,” says Scott. “We are lucky to have a town wedged perfectly between Calgary and Vancouver. It allows us to more easily attract larger artists. The Regent, the Last Drop and the Big Eddie [Pub] are also amazing at getting acts and providing accommodation in their hotels to sweeten the deal.”
He also gives a big shout-out to Amy Flexman who brings in acts to venues around town and even opened up the Roxy as a music venue this past winter, as well as Garry Pendergast who brings summer acts into Grizzly Plaza.
Catching a favourite tune over the airways strikes a greater emotion than simply hearing its expected arrival on your playlist. Broadcasting is fresh entertainment and the folks at Stoke FM are mixing it up and putting it together with brilliance.
Radio stations can wake you from your sleep, co-pilot your commute and greet you in unexpected places. They can sneakily play a drastic role in stirring your spirit.
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