Friday, September 4, 2020

The Future of Music Promotion is Hyperlocal

 The best influencers and opinion leaders for indie music are your local webcasters, podcasters, college radio stations and music/art/entertainment bloggers.  They're far more accessible than commercial broadcasters, and in the aggregate they reach more of the audience that's in closest proximity to you and do so with greater frequency than traditional FM stations, social media, or the music recommendation services; e.g., Spotify.  In the DMV, stations like WOOK can provide local artists in depth coverage and are open to creating partnerships and other ventures. 

Friday, February 9, 2018

Creative Sector Accelerator Sets New Tempo for DC Indie Music

Capitol Music X Media Accelerator Flyer
A number of metro D.C.'s emerging music acts gathered at Oxon Hill's La Ceiba Restaurant for January's Capitol Music X Media Accelerator, the first in a series of events connecting artists and media resources.  Organized by WOOK Radio DC, representatives from several terrestrial and online radio stations -- including WWFD The Gamut 103.5 FM HD3, Baltimore's WMEL, Arlington low-power FM WERA 96.7, and DC Radio 96.3 HD4 -- were on hand introducing their outlets to recording artists for radio promotion.

"Part of the goal here," said WOOK's CEO, William Tucker, Jr., "is to establish a repository where artists developing projects can pick from a variety of services a record label might normally provide." Tucker envisions the space under development for WOOK in the Southern Marketplace at 801 Southern Ave SE providing artists teleworking and administrative services as well as radio promotion and a performance venue.  He expects to begin accepting artists into the program by the end of February.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Cumulus Declares Bankruptcy

Atlanta-based Cumulus Media, owner and operator of 446 U.S. broadcast radio stations including D.C.-area stations WMAL 630 AM and 105.9 FM, WRQX 107.3 FM, and the Westwood One radio network, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy according to an article published in the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Cumulus President and CEO Mary Burner cited, "... the debt overhang left by previous years of underperformance remains a significant challenge that we must overcome for our operational turnaround to proceed."

Coming on the heels of Viacom's shedding of CBS Radio, Cumulus' decision symbolizes Big Radio's time of reckoning after overleveraging itself acquiring stations in the mid-to-late 90s.  The bills are long overdue -- Cumulus defaulted on $24 million debt payment earlier this month -- and radio stocks across the board are in the tank  It's safe to assume Cumulus will liquidate some of its portfolio, and that it will have to do so in a buyer's market.  We can also take for granted Cumulus will hold on to its properties in major markets, including their chronically underdeveloped and underperforming DC outlets.  The question is whether this reorganization will cause Cumulus executives to re-think the corporation's business model to improve its competitiveness 3-5 years into the future.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Judge Tosses Lawsuit Against WOOK Founder

February 14, 2017 - D.C. Superior Court Judge Jennifer Di Toro dismissed with prejudice a lawsuit brought against William L. Tucker, Jr. by a D.C.-based nonprofit and one time fiscal sponsor to his LPFM project.  The lawsuit, filed by Sincere Seven, sought to block Tucker, 54, from identifying himself as having any involvement with the radio station venture, directing its operations, and managing its assets-- including the call sign letters 'WOOK'. 

Tucker launched the project in 2013 to establish a low-power radio network for showcasing D.C. art and culture, then secured Sincere Seven as its fiscal sponsor in order to qualify for a LPFM permit from the Federal Communications Commission.  After winning a construction permit for 103.1 FM, the relationship between Tucker and the sponsor began to deteriorate with the latter's attempts to seize control of the project intensifying as time moved forward.  Sincere Seven's fiduciary misconduct against Tucker and the project continued into the following year, with its effort to oust Tucker in January 2015 and failure to respond to several FCC inquiries.  Citing questions raised by D.C.-based media conglomerate Radio One over the omission of Sincere Seven's director, Perry Redd, as a party to the application, and Redd's criminal record, the FCC rescinded WOOK's construction permit for 103.1 FM in November 2015, and dismissed the application in May of 2016.     

With the suit now dismissed and the construction permit for 103.1 FM since rescinded, Tucker is making final preparations for launching WOOK's low-power AM station this March from studios on Buzzard's Point.  He has also reorganized his nonprofit organization to promote community broadcasting and the production of hyperlocal media content. 

Thursday, January 7, 2016

An Open Letter to D.C.-area Fans of the Tom Joyner Morning Show

Dear D.C. Area Fans of the Tom Joyner Morning Show,

I'm not inclined to promote or even recommend Tom Joyner, WMMJ 102.3 FM, or any media properties of [expletive deleted].  But your alarm at [expletive deleted's] recent decision to move TJMS from 102.3 FM to 1450 AM is unwarranted.  Below are some easy and free alternatives for anyone to continue listening to Black folks' favorite uncle at the family reunion BBQ.

There's a button or menu option on your car's entertainment center that enables users to switch between 'AM' and 'FM' radio frequencies.  Use it.  It's 100% safe.  I promise.  Then, using the entertainment center's dial or button, tune to 1450 AM, any time between 6 and 10 a.m., Mondays through Fridays, to hear TJMS. 

Many of you undoubtedly have mobile devices of one type or another; i.e., 'smartphones', tablets, etc., that allow you to listen to programming by broadcast radio stations streamed over the Internet.  Even [expletive deleted] streams its stations, including WOL 1450 AM.  AAMOF, TJMS is streamed, 'live' over the Internet at, and you may listen in by using any number of mobile apps from radio streaming services like TuneIn.  It's possible to connect your mobile device to a Bluetooth-equipped car entertainment system for enjoying TJMS in your car, almost anywhere you might drive, through today's high-quality car speakers.

Finally, many car entertainment systems come equipped from the factory with HD Radio.  In the D.C. area [Expletive deleted] will be airing TJMS on WKYS-HD2, WPRS-HD2, and WMMJ-HD2.  The sound quality of FM HD Radio is superb, although at the expense of signal range.  Still, for listeners within 20 or so miles of any of these stations TJMS will be available.  So relax.

Don't shed tears for Tom Joyner over this move as he's earned millions selling shares of his company, Reach Media, to [expletive deleted] while continuing to syndicate his show across the nation through Citadel.  I suspect TJMS will continue to be widely available well into the foreseeable future. Everyone knows the unabashedly bammafied uncle at the cookout isn't leaving as long as food and beverages are available.    



Monday, January 19, 2015

OPPORTUNITY ALERT!!!! Volunteers Wanted for WOOK-LP Radio Board of Directors

WOOK-LP 103.1 FM is seeking enthusiastic, talented, and skilled volunteers with a passion for D.C.-area art and culture to serve a two-year term on its board of directors.  Contribute your time, imagination, and leadership to establishing this station for the voices of the nation's capitol.  Individuals active in indie media and the local performance arts, and professional experience in fundraising, grantwriting, underwriting, marketing, and event management/coordination in the nonprofit sector are encouraged to apply. 

For further information and an application, contact WOOK at (443) 288-3374, or send an e-mail including your full name, address, and phone number to wookradiodc@gmail.  Type 'Volunteers for Board of Directors' in the subject box.

Monday, November 17, 2014

WOOK DC Artists Appreciation Happy Hour - Friday, November 21st!

Celebrate metropolitan D.C.'s performing artists with WOOK-LP Radio, and OK 103 personality/birthday girl Ida Campbell, in anticipation of FM 103.1's upcoming launch during D.C. Artists Appreciation Happy Hour, 4-7 p.m., Friday, November 21 @ the Austin Grille, 919 Ellsworth Drive, in Silver Spring, Maryland.

Free food!  Cash bar!  Sponsor a 15-, 30-, or 60-minute block of WOOK programming with a donation -- all donations are tax deductible.  Music acts...  BRING A PROMO CD for exhibition!  Follow WOOK on Facebook or Inbox for more information.