Thursday, May 22, 2014

Toad The Wet Sprocket "The Moment"

People asked us for months, "What is going to be the first song you play on your new FM signal?"

And everyone had an opinion.

You may be a little surprised to know that even just a couple of hours before we were to go live, we hadn't picked a song yet.

A few weeks back, Barbara Dacey and I had agreed that we should air the "ocean waves" sound effect that comprised the last 20 minutes of our final broadcast on 92.7, fifteen months ago.

My first idea was that we would play "Riviera Paradise," which was the last song on 92.7.  It seemed to suggest that we were picking up right where we left off.  But then it didn't seem original enough.

While brainstorming, Barbara suggested Carly Simon's "Never Been Gone," which is perfect on a number of levels, since it is specifically about the Vineyard, and the joke that "mvyradio feels like it never was away" was pretty funny. 

But we set that idea aside, because we really wanted the first song to be something upbeat.  (Hilariously, the 2 comments I saw online about "Never Been Gone," which ended up being the 3rd or 4th song we played were along the lines of, "I can't believe you didn't play that one first!" and "Ugh, I can't believe they played Carly Simon!?!"  So I guess we did strike the appropriate middle ground)

It was Barbara who came up with the unconventional choice of playing James Brown's "I Got You."

Though it's not a tune we would regularly play, the spirit and vibe matched the moment.

But that wasn't the first song on the new 88.7.

What I knew all along was that we were going to have to turn on the new transmitter and be certain that everything was working properly, before it was safe to announce to the world that we were going to "launch" 88.7.

And we had no idea when that was going to happen.

We were scheduled to have the antenna hung on the tower, last week.  But rain prevented the contractors from doing the work.

They were supposed to start Monday, but they couldn't get a ferry reservation.

They got to the station early Wednesday, but by mid-morning, they realized that a couple of necessary cables had not arrived via UPS.  We tracked the package and found that it was on-Island, so I furiously started texting a couple of guys I know who work for UPS, to see if we could pull some strings and get it there.  It came shortly after lunch.

I kept wandering down to the engineer, who was hooking things up in the basement.

"Now?  How about now?  Are we close?"  I was like a 4 year old.

The plan, once the thing was live, was to put the ocean wave on, send out a press release to the media and send an eblast to our listeners giving them a 45 minute heads up.  Craig, the engineer, just had to finish his work to set this all in motion.

Finally, he came running upstairs, and simply gave me the thumbs up.

Craig, Barbara and I ran out to the parking lot, and put on the car radios.

88.7FM was on the air.

"Does it sound good?  It is a go?"

It was "The Moment."  Completely random that the Toad The Wet Sprocket song was the one on the air when the switch was flipped.  But there it was, coming out of our speakers.

We all smiled.  And yes, a tear or two was shed.

Toad The Wet Sprocket was on 88.7FM, which probably only had 3 listeners, Craig, Barbara and me.

I ran back inside and put the waves on the air.

The moment had arrived.

Hear the song on Youtube.

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