The new all-digital platform created by a veteran broadcaster strives to showcase ‘authentic’ Michigan-based Americana, roots rock, folk, blues and soul music.
Over the past four decades, Michigan native Brian Maloney has traveled the country and embraced live performances by a bevy of impressive artists.
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“But I have learned in my travels that nothing beats the talent pool in Michigan or the fan base for live music,” said Maloney, an inductee in the Specs Howard School of Broadcast Arts Hall of Fame who spent more than 40 years in various broadcast management roles.
“Michigan has a long history of rich, musical talent that has had a lasting impact worldwide and I see no signs of that letting up. If anything, the music scene is as vibrant as it’s ever been. I love it.”
So in September, Maloney launched The Sonic Coast, Michigan’s first all-digital Americana and roots rock music station – described as a “groundbreaking app-based streaming radio station” that serves as a platform for both established and emerging Michigan artists.
“Within our first 24 hours of launching, I had over 30 Michigan bands reach out to me – good bands, great artists,” he said. “That simply doesn’t happen elsewhere, period. We need to be grateful for what we have here in Michigan. It’s special.”
Maloney, who splits his time between Michigan and his home in North Carolina where he started another similar and successful Americana format station several years ago, said the Michigan station features “a melting pot of genres” focused on “authentic” music that has little flash or tech production.
With a tagline of “Great Lakes, Great Grooves,” The Sonic Coast has featured the likes of eastern Michigan roots-rockers The Gasoline Gypsies (currently the station’s “most requested” artist) and Michigan-bred acts such as The Accidentals, Lindsay Lou and Patty PerShayla who played Friday’s “Michigan Night” at Kalamazoo State Theatre. (Browse a photo gallery Sunday at Local Spins.)
On air Internet-wise, the station mixes tracks from Michigan artists with national acts such as Grace Potter, The Decemberists and The Avett Brothers.
Listeners can download The Sonic Coast’s free app for IOS and Android devices. So far, the Detroit and Grand Rapids have formed the station’s strongest listening base.
“The mission of Sonic Coast is to give Michigan bands – especially up-and-coming artists – a meaningful platform to gain exposure for their work,” Maloney said. “We need to be grateful for what we have here in Michigan. It’s special.”
EDITOR’S NOTE: Local Spins supports The Sonic Coast in its mission to showcase Michigan artists, with the station sharing links to Local Spins features and its Local Spins on WYCE radio show. Find links to listen to The Sonic Coast and get updates about artists and features in Local Spins’ “Podcasts” menu at the top of the website.
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