Radio QDX was created as an experiment (hence the "X" in our name) to address the lack of a local radio format focusing on the albums we grew up with in the 1960s, 70s, 80s and 90's. Back in the day, we called this music format "Progressive FM Rock". This later morphed into Album-Oriented Rock (AOR), and eventually into what is now known as "Classic Rock".
Back in the '70's our local radio market had 3 amazing AOR stations, WQDR (Raleigh, NC), WRQR (Farmville, NC) and WMYK (Moyock, NC). WQDR switched to Country in 1984. The other two no longer exist.
We don't consider Radio QDX to be "Classic Rock" in the strictest sense. Most Classic Rock stations play 200 or 300 songs over and over, while Radio QDX has a core playlist of over 3,000 songs from over 500 artists. We also have specialized playlists for the weekends. This diverse music is sourced from a massive collection of CD's and vinyl, all constantly rotated, rested and reviewed in an effort to play newly discovered music that will leave our listeners saying, “Edna, get me a damn sammich", I mean "wow, that's a splendid selection!".
Radio QDX is listener supported and commercial free. We believe that the most creative radio available today is produced by community broadcast and Internet stations. These stations are usually listener supported and operated by volunteers. Community stations serve special communities of interest. They broadcast content that is popular and relevant to a specific audience but is often overlooked by commercial or mass-media broadcasters. Community radio stations are operated, owned, and influenced by the communities they serve vs. national broadcast corporate chain owners. They are generally nonprofit and provide a mechanism for enabling individuals, groups, and communities to tell their own stories, to share experiences and, in a media-rich world, to become creators and contributors of media.
To paraphrase the late-great Tom "Big Daddy" Donahue, Radio, as we know it today and have known it for the last twenty five years, is dead, and its rotting corpse is stinking up the airways.
I say this with no joy, as I have been loosely, yet lovingly a part of the radio "biz" for forty years. The way we got here is well documented and I won't dredge it back up, but suffice to say, most of today's broadcast radio stations have been reduced to computer generated, cloned, satellite-fed, cost-cutted money pits.
Don't misunderstand, I am not one of those "anti corporate radio" types. While the executives at the big groups such iHeartMedia, Beasley, Cumulus, etc. certainly share responsibility for the current state of affairs, there a many other variables.
We have more choices than ever for their info and entertainment. Music formats have become ridiculously fragmented. Just within "Rock" itself, we have melodic Rock, Hard Rock, Grunge, Progressive, Glam, Punk, Metal and more. Some people will simply not listen to anything outside of their niche, their comfort zone.
Couple narrowly focused listeners who have thousands of ways to hear whatever they want to hear (usually at no cost) and you can see what a formidable obstacle traditional broadcast radio must overcome.
FM/AM broadcasters bear huge costs to just to operate at a minimal level. The equipment is expensive to buy and maintain, there's insurance, staffing, licensing, government agencies to satisfy, the list goes on. They are competing against dozens of other stations in their markets, all trying to reach the same population and all trying the carve a slice of the local advertising revenue. All the while listeners are turning away in droves, sucked in by YouTube, Spotify & Sirius/XM.
Radio has been down many times before and always bounced back. It survived the onslaught of television in the early 1950's. It survived the death of AM Top 40. Can it do it again? Does anyone care enough to take a chance?