Forget social-media gurus. If you really want to know where the radio industry is headed, ask the man who wrote Rock and Roll, Hoochie Koo.
That would be Rick Derringer.
“It’s just like going back in time and rebuilding the whole record business from scratch,” Rick (above) tells us of Internet radio.
And this week on Rundgren Radio, Rick riffs on the subject like no- body’s business.
“I saw the old Elvis Presley movie Jailhouse Rock the other night. And in it, he’s actually able to say, ‘Let’s start our own label,’ the guitar virtuoso, whose new album is titled Knighted by the Blues, tells hosts Doug Ford and Cruiser Mel.
“And they started their own label and they were able to cut this record and bring it right into the radio station and get the guy to play it while they were standing there. And the audience would call in and request it at that time.
“Those days of radio, people figure, are gone because radio is so controlled and it’s so big – Clear Channel and all those stations – it’s programmed and it’s so controlled that that can’t happen anymore.
“Well, they’re wrong. It can happen and it is happening right now. Tonight, you’re listening to it. Internet radio is the wave of the future – but it’s also a big salute to the past, because we’re able to go on, we’re able to do things like we’re doing now.
Rick’s original band, The McCoys, had a No. 1 hit in 1965 with this single.
“Stations can play whatever music they want to, people can either call in or email, immed- iately responding to what the radio station is playing.”
If that weren’t enough of a sales pitch, Rick goes on to explain why oldfangled radio just can’t cut it in this day and age.
“Radio stations, no matter how big they are – the terrestrial stations, we call them – are limited by the output of their transmitter, which means they can only be heard within a certain given metropolitan area,” he says.
“These stations, like the one we’re on now can be heard everywhere in the world.”
To head Rick’s full interview, click here.