103.1FM: Indie Bandas?

Weeks have passed since Indie 103.1 FM in Los Angeles self-immolated playing a continuous on-air announcement bashing the corporatization of radio and rotating the same songs, such as “Anarchy in the UK,” every hour. In radio reconquismo the frequency has already given way to “El Gato!” This transition to a Spanish language mostly banda- but some cumbia – station conflicts me in multi-layered ways, so let’s get to it…

1) I like Indie Rock (Some of it) Indie 103.1 represented an antithesis to KROQ which has degenerated into basically playing four bands only: Nirvana, Sublime, the Foo Fighters, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. This point is irrespective of its replacement, because now Indie is gone and there’s nothing else on the dial to fill the void.

2) Radio consolidation – the other way. I’m too lazy to do my homework, but a quick scan of my radio dial this morning netted at least five stations that play banda music. Juxtapose the arrival of yet another station of this format against the loss of a rare one, and you have a move in the wrong direction.

3) Reverse gentrification on your FM station! The first two have been critical, so here I’m reaching for some silver lining in all this. In doing so, I’m picturing a hipster oblivious to what has happened to his favorite station in LA because he’s visiting his hipster gentrification pals in Brooklyn, New York. Coming back home to his place in Echo Park, he turns the dial to 103.1FM to shock and dismay as instead of hearing the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, he hears the Uy Uy Uyyyyyssss! Snare drum snaps, cymbal crashes, boracho singing, and tuba farts have encroached on his sacred soil. Now he knows how we feel…

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