may no longer be on the tubes but it's certainly not out, according to former Operations Manager Josh T. Landow
Yesterday, we told you about the concert
put on by former YRock DJs to celebrate the end of their partnership with WXPN. In June, YRock was given the heave-ho by XPN higher-ups because of budget concerns, and Landow and the only other paid employee Joey O.
were laid off. But that show also became an unofficial launching party of sorts for Y-Not
), Landow's Internet radio venture.
"The seed [for Y-Not] started before I ever knew I was being laid off," says Landow, who began at Y100 as an intern in 1997, worked his way up to promotions manager and ended his XPN tenure last Thursday. "The management at XPN had announced there were budget issues and they were facing a big deficit. I thought YRock was going to be the first thing to go. I knew that there were a lot of people there who appreciated what we did there but it was always separate
. Having that in the back of my head, I was thinking, 'What's my next move?' I didn't want it to die
, whether I stayed at XPN or took it another radio station or do it on my own."
While he sees Internet radio as a growing phenomenon, Landow acknowledges that it's still on the fringe and, in a perfect world, he would be able to partner with another radio station, much like the deal with XPN. Currently, Landow is paying all fees out of his own pocket
. He doesn't have an economic plan currently, but hopes to partner with local business and concert promoters to keep the station going.
Y-Not, which will employ many of the volunteer DJs that left YRock after Landow was laid off, has the same goals as before broadcasting alternative and indie rock, along with deeper album cuts just on a different platform. XPN is still using the YRock moniker as a sort of local portal for music fans
, which threw Landow for a loop. When he was laid off, Landow thought they would cut out the brand completely. Instead of continuing with the YRock title, Landow chose the throwback Y-Not, the former station's local program. Reverting to the Y100 seemed like a step back for Landow.
Critics may point out that Y-Not is, in fact, a step back. As Brian Howard outlined in a 2006 cover story
, before XPN picked up the defunct station for a Wednesday through Friday night slot, erstwhile Y100 DJs broadcast online pirate radio-style out of a makeshift bunker. Now Landow is back to square one.
"I can't argue with the fact that it is going back. We lost our radio show, that was our primary advantage of partnering with XPN," says Landow. "I still want to do this
, whether it's on the Internet or on the radio. My passion is sharing music and this legacy is very important to me
. I want it to continue and I want it to continue in the hands of the people who have been caring for it for the last five years."
The shift to the Internet means that Landow and Co. no longer have a local tie, other than their location. They are no longer obligated to cater to a Philadelphia market. But Landow doesn't see it that way. "I'm a lifelong Philadelphia resident. Having great local radio is important to me
," he says. "We've always had listeners that have found us from other parts of the country but our roots are always going to be in Philadelphia."