From a tiny studio in my home, I create one hour long pop music radio shows which I call The Vinyl Impressions.
The Vinyl Impressions was an idea for a show that came from performing live radio shows back in the late 1990s and early 2000s and where I made the programmes available to hospital radio stations for free in order that they could fill their 24hr schedule with good quality content but without the uphill task of producing them themselves.
I started out playing just vinyl records but, eventually, recorded all of my record collection onto DAT (Digital Audio Tape) so that I could play the music on my live mobile shows without the need to transport 20+ huge containers of 45s, LPs, 12-inch singles etc. to every venue I was booked into.
It took me over 3 years to record my record collection to DAT and then longer to transfer them from DAT to standard computer hard drive, all indexed and named correctly with ID3 Tags.
In its simplest form, every song I played was originally available only on vinyl record, hence, The Vinyl Impressions Music Radio show title to the programme … even though they were actually played from a computer’s hard drive.
Nowadays, I still remain faithful to the original format and only play songs that come out on vinyl record. Of course, most songs come out on vinyl at some stage due to the popularity of the format so, I could play pretty-well anything and it would be appropriate to the programme’s title.
But, not wanting to spoil the perception that the show’s title ‘The Vinyl Impressions’ gives, I do tend to have most of the pre-recorded shows based on much older music.
I still have show-titles like ‘Now and Then’ whereby I play something from much more recent times but include the oldies as well. However, with the current format of different niches for each different show, I still mainly keep it for the older type of true vinyl records.
Every show has a different theme which I do on purpose as there are so many tracks that one just wouldn’t play if you just read the title. It’s so easy to flip through records or look down lists of artists and song titles and think, ‘nah, I won’t play that …’ but, if I give the show a title, like ‘1980s Favourites’ or have it so the songs must be about a specific theme or word, then I am ‘forced’ to play certain tracks, and when I do, I’m really pleased because actually LISTENING to them instead of just reading the title really does get me to play things I might go on missing out on forever. It’s fun to produce this type of programme and listeners seem to really enjoy it, too.
My first shows went out to around 12 or so stations, all of them hospital radio stations and, with the help of an area manager for the networks, I gained more exposure to HRBA (Hospital Radio Broadcasting Association) stations and so the syndication of my homemade radio show grew every month.
It didn’t take long before radio stations on the Internet and FM broadcasters outside of hospital radio wanted to take the shows as well.
I decided to allow this as it made the whole concept much more exciting and where a number of stations donate to the hospital radio shows which keeps them moving and covering the costs of equipment and online storage etc..
There are now over 600 shows in the archives which can be downloaded by The Vinyl Impressions show subscribers at any time, they have free access.
Six new shows are created every month and where each subscribed station is notified when the uploaded show-files are ready for them to download from The Vinyl Impressions show-page.
I now have hundreds of stations on the syndicated subscription and the feedback is very positive and encourages me to work harder on the shows for improvements and availability.
There are now more specialist shows as well as the standard monthly programmes, the equipment in the home studio is improving and I have recently had some professional jingles and idents created for The Vinyl Impressions Music Radio Show so, all getting better as it grows, now, worldwide, not just UK.
The hospital radio connection will always be there are around 200 charities running the stations playout The Vinyl Impressions shows every day, which is amazing. Recently no less than four of the shortlisted ‘Station Of The Year’ awards were taking The Vinyl Impressions so, I can’t wait to see if the eventual winner is a station that schedules my show … what an honour
It’s been almost ten years since I started this ‘hobby’ but I live and breathe all things Vinyl Impressions nowadays so, I’m hoping to keep the music moving for a lot more years yet.
Thank you to all those who support the show and do keep the feedback coming, I read every email and take action where appropriate. [email protected]
I'm soon to be launching 'Web Fast Hosting' and am aiming to provide website hosting servers for hospital radio stations who need such to keep in touch with their patients and families, listeners and visitors. With the help of https://marketingbugle.co.uk (who support The Vinyl Impressions Music Radio Show) this should go live imminently.