The first reason is that Radio Fandango is the best name for a radio station, ever.
And the second reason is because we love new independent music.
And we love guitars, and we love bands, and we love songs, and we love albums, and we love gigs.
And we love the miserable charm of smelly old music venues.
And we love live music and the innocent endeavour of three bands playing their songs, knowing if they get it right, they could possibly, maybe change their lives forever - knowing one of their songs could become a hit and that hit could become a timeless classic.
And we love the power of gigs to transform these desolate and slightly smelly venues into magical places, where audiences can be transported, where the music can move the head, the heart and the hips. Sometimes all three at the same time.
We love all these things. And no doubt you do too.
But their very existence is now under serious threat.
Things were already bad at grassroots back in 2019. A lack of investment in new talent from the majors, commercial radio stations ignoring new artists if the stats weren’t good enough, and small venues under attack from property developers, gastro pubs, and the triple fried chip cooked in goose fat (delicious though these potato wedges may be).
And then COVID came along... And now there is the very real prospect that small music venues that support bands and gigs could become a thing of the past. But meanwhile, at certain levels, the UK music industry is in rude health with huge profits made from streaming for Major labels, superstar artists and rights holders. They have never had it so good. That's nice, but is any of this money trickling down to support the grassroots?
Without the small pubs and venues and promoters that support new bands, where will tomorrow's Glastonbury headliners comes from? Or maybe that's just the way the cookie crumbles and it doesn't matter coz we can keep regurgitating the back catalogue and last years headliners? And hey, look the Rolling Stones are still going so we can keep this show on the road for a while yet no probs. And am sure The Killers are happy to keep headlining festivals for the next 10 years.
But maybe there is huge pool of talent out there, kids who want to write new songs and play gigs and express themselves, but find that the local venue has closed down and the idea of a gig in London or getting played on the radio an impossible dream. Kids who don't want to sing cover versions and show off their ability to scale several octaves on talent completions on Saturday night TV.
So maybe the second reason for setting up Radio Fandango is to shine a light on a new generation of kids, with names like Ian Curtis and Amy Winehouse and Robert Smith and Polly Harvey and highlight to those in power that grassroots music is precious and needs rescuing, saving, and supporting. Not just for the pleasure, new music brings to people but because it has always been this country's proud export to the world.
And once it's gone, it's gone.NEWS