I haven't done this in a while, and since we're getting close to putting our station back on the air (just a few weeks away), I thought I'd revisit a blog I wrote several years ago about who we are (and why).
Before I go any further, I want to thank you for the continued support! Thanks to social media (and you can connect with me through the links on the homepage), I’ve been able to connect with thousands of Christmas music fans and friends!
To be honest, I'm more than a little humbled by the success of this station. You have all had a major part in making one of my biggest wishes come true!
For those who don't know, The Sounds of Christmas is an Internet Christmas radio station. For those who haven't discovered Internet radio, yet, it simply means it's like a radio station, but available online instead of through a traditional radio. And as far as I'm concerned, it's a lot better.
I am a huge fan of Christmas music, and I always have been. Increasingly over the years, I had become more and more disillusioned with the way those traditional radio stations went about playing Christmas music.
There are tons of great Christmas CDs out there, and most seem to get ignored, while Bing's "White Christmas" and Nat's "Christmas Song" get featured seemingly every hour.
Don't get me wrong, I love Bing Crosby and Nat "King" Cole. I love Frank Sinatra, Rosemary Clooney, Andy Williams, Judy Garland, Johnny Mathis and the Chipmunks, too. But there's a lot more than just those standards, and I can't be the only one that loves all the rest of the Christmas music.
If that didn't underscore my point, how about Josh Groban? His first Christmas CD, which debuted in 2007, sold so well it broke records held by Elvis Presley! In fact, it went on to become the best-selling CD of the year! Not just the best-selling "Christmas" CD, but the best-selling CD, period.
Note: The Sounds of Christmas is considered a "new" station each year because we don't broadcast all year long, just from November 1 through January 6. And we only start on November 1 so that you can start listening whenever you're ready.
Listeners to the Sounds of Christmas last year got to hear new holiday music from singers and bands as diverse as Justin Bieber, Vanessa Peters, Jars of Clay, Jordin Sparks, David Archuleta, Michael Buble, She and Him, Jackie Evancho, Cyndi Lauper, the Cast of GLEE, Paul Anka, Carole King, Sleeping At Last, Simply Red’s Mick Hucknall, Rockapella, the Grip Weeds, Benjamin Utecht, Percy Sledge, Roy Holliday, My Morning Jacket, Kathy Troccoli, Jim Brickman, Mindy Gledhill, Leo Sayer, Bowling For Soup, Lisa McClowry, the David Crowder Band, Melinda Doolittle, Roger McGuinn, Scott Bradlee, Scott Weiland, Vanessa Carlton, Josh Carterer, Los Straitjackets, Smashing Pumpkins, Green River Ordinance, Javier Colon, Little Big Town, Chicago, Expose, Eddie Floyd, Donny Osmond, Scarlett Johansson, FFH, Kelly Clarkson, Jack Johnson, Meaghan Smith, the Wiggles, Matt Wertz, Schuyler Fisk, Victoria Justice, Matthew West, the Steve Miller Band, Tommy Emmanuel, the Blenders, Eddie Money, Iggy Pop, the Cast of Elf-The Musical, Sean Quigley, Sara Bareilles, TobyMac, Bryan Adams, Kenny Vance and the Planotones, Hey Monday, Uncle Kracker, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, Plain White T’s, Moat Jumper, Kutless, Richard Marx, Little River Band, Luanne Hunt, Brian Wilson, Belles and Whistles, Billy Burnette, Katrina, BoDeans, John Zorn, Toby Keith and Sammy Hagar, Weatherstar, Natasha Bedingfield, Keb Mo, Patty Smyth, Kimberley Locke, the Kings of Christmas, Sarah McLachlan, Smalltown Poets, Shonen Knife, Clarence Clemons, the Killers, Owl City, Chanticleer, Paul Carrack, Tony Bennett, John Legend, Lady Gaga, the bird and the bee, Cast of Jersey Boys, the Bandana Splits, Lee DeWyze and Red Wanting Blue. To name a few (and apologies to anyone I left out)!
After all, if you love one particular Christmas song that much, odds are you own it and can play it whenever you want, right?
This station was something I've wanted to do for a long time, and thanks to Mannheim Steamroller, I've been able to make it happen.
Now, I'm starting to get ready to do it again. And if you'd like, I'd love to have your help!
First, if you are a singer or in a band, and you've recorded a Christmas song, make sure I know about it! Leave a comment here or send me a message so I can get it and look into adding it to our playlist.
Please note, I don't add everything that gets sent. I've been in the radio industry for over twenty-five years, and I feel like I have a grasp on what works and what doesn't. I know sometimes that's a matter of taste, but that's how it is. I only add music that seems to fit with what the station is. You can get a little of a taste of that by check out the top hundred songs from last year.
That said, what have you got to lose? Through Live365, we've got an International audience of at least 5 million, and when your song plays, there's a link to Amazon and iTunes. You'll be reaching an audience that is already online, and that loves Christmas music. That's just one click away from a sale! Potentially, it's one click away from 5 million sales!
Even though it's on the Internet, the Sounds of Christmas is still a radio station. And just like traditional radio stations, we're able to run based on advertising. So if you run or work for a company that would like to reach a really big audience who are, as I already mentioned, online and just a click away from buying your product, let me know!
I try to keep the ads down, allowing the music to be the focus. That is, after all, what people come to the Sounds of Christmas for. So there aren't a lot of slots to fill. And I'm every bit as picky about the ads as I am about the music.
This is a family-friendly radio station, so your ad, service and/or product need to be family-friendly, too. I didn't think I needed to say that, but after all the porn-related friend requests I get, I wanted to be sure.
That said, if you'd like to publicize your business and draw people to you, your website and your products and services (which will even be open online on Christmas Day), leave me a comment or send me a message and I'll get you all the details. Once the spaces fill up, that will be that.
You can also let your friends know about us! Just mention us to friends and family who love Christmas music. And if you hear something that you really like, please check out the artist and at least consider buying their song or CD! Without them, there would be no Sounds of Christmas!
You don't have to buy anything, of course. The best way you can support us is by listening! We'll be back on November 1 with thousands of great Christmas songs, including new holiday music from Scotty McCreery, the Polyphonic Spree, Richard Marx, Rod Stewart, Celtic Woman, Judy Pancoast, Whitney Wolanin, the New Royalty, the Empty Pockets, Gary “U.S.” Bonds, Blake Shelton, Lunch at Allen’s, Train, Chris Mann, Colbie Caillat, Lady Antebellum, Rita Coolidge, Tracey Thorn, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Eleventyseven, Sufjan Stevens and Olivia Newton-John (with John Travolta)!
And may you always believe in Santa Claus!