As music fans become more and more frustrated with the format of traditional radio and the limited playlists they feature, the popularity of independent online streaming stations is growing at a fast pace. These “internet radio” or “app-based” stations are helping independent artists reach more markets and fans. And anyone wanting to dip their toes in the world of broadcasting can now do so – all they need is an internet connection, a microphone, and a passion for music. One such broadcaster is Tom Kelly, the Creator/Founder of Chasing Your Dream Radio. Emily Ann Wells, Editor/Founder of The CMBeat recently got to speak with Tom to learn a little bit more about the his station.
Emily Ann Wells: What was the inspiration behind starting Chasing Your Dream Radio?
Tom Kelly: I started using twitter a few years ago to get people to donate to my bike rides I do for Multiple Sclerosis. I had a lot of success doing that and while I was on twitter I started chatting with a lot of musicians trying to promote themselves. I was kind of fascinated and I admired their hard work and dedication. I wanted to do something to help and noticed some of the internet radio stations. I researched them and decided I wanted to do that and dedicate it to the hard working people who were trying to get noticed. It seemed like they were chasing a dream so that’s how I came up with the title. Chasing Your Dream Radio is for and about the artists who play the music it’s not about any DJ. It would not be possible if it were not for all the great talent out there.
EAW: Did you ever work in radio, internet, or terrestrial (traditional) radio, prior to starting Chasing Your Dream?
TK: That’s an easy one to answer, no.
EAW: Chasing Your Dream is an internet based station. What are some of the advantages of internet radio over terrestrial stations? What are some of the disadvantages?
TK: I never worked in radio so I am not sure of the disadvantages but a couple of the advantages are that I am faced with less regulations and, I am also not tied to any sponsors or beholding to anyone so I can play the music I want, when I want.
EAW: What are the plans for Chasing Your Dream as it continues to grow in the future? Ever consider a mobile app?
TK: I am not sure what the future holds but, right now I would like to continue growing the amount of listeners Chasing Your Dream Radio has at a slow steady pace. I would like to get to a point where I feel that I am really capable of helping someone not just chase their dream but make that dream come true. I want Chasing Your Dream Radio to be a station that new artists can use as a stepping stone as they work hard toward achieving their dreams. I want it to be a station that the artists and fans want to tune in to.
I did develop a mobile app but then I changed the streaming service I use and the app that I developed did not work well with the new streaming service. I would like to develop a new app in the future as time permits me to do so.
EAW: Your station features established artists as well as independent artists who are just starting out. What has been the response from some of the artists you play? How does music get chosen to be featured on Chasing Your Dream?
TK: I have been getting away from playing established artists to give more upcoming ones a chance to be heard. When I first started this I didn’t have a lot of music so I added what I could to the rotation. I am more concerned about the genre of music when someone submits music. I also want it to be clean. I try to give everyone a chance, I don’t to want to discourage anyone from Chasing their Dream.
Thank you to Tom Kelly, for taking the time for this interview. Check out Chasing Your Dream Radio for yourself at their website: www.chasingyourdreamradio.com.
Do you listen to Chasing Your Dream? What do you think of it? Let us know in the comments below or on social media!