International Media Action begins construction on Zumix Radio Station in East Boston

zumix map

Zumix is a music school for kids, founded in 1993 with a summer neighborhood concert series as a community response to youth violence. They started offering music lessons after school, and since then they have moved into a beautiful old firehouse building, with a great stage, recording studios, a small business that creates youth employment by training and connecting youth to work as live sound engineers for events.  And of course, they have an internet station which will soon be on FM. They include shows from “Wicked Fresh Locals” to  “The Mosh Pit”  to “Budder Gods Gaming” to “National Domestic Radio,”  a radio show by and for nannies, doulas, health care aides,  housekeepers and other domestic workers.

I first visited in my pirate days,  on a tour where I was teaching how to build pirate stations. At that time, I had an umbrella with an antenna built in to it, and a little transmitter in a lunch box. I thought it was such a cool group, I’ve always kept in touch when visiting Boston.

They were unable to get a legal signal in Boston in the first round of LPFM due to the NAB’s Radio Broadcasting Preservation Act, but after the reforms of 2011 Zumix was finally able to apply.  The antenna will be on top of the local high school, which will also have a studio where their students will make shows part of the week.

There will be an interesting technical problem to solve- we’d like to set it up so that the on air signal can automatically switch between the studios on a schedule, but also be manually switched if necessary through a website.  We’ll post later on what equipment we end up using for this, since it will be useful for lots of stations that have time share agreements, but share a single transmitter and antenna facility.zumix map

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