Earlier today I received an email from Mike Taylor, the lead program director for WOXY.com, addressed to the interns telling us that the station’s parent company, Future Sounds, Inc., has suspended funding the station. As such, WOXY fell silent around 9 am CST.

A statement on the station’s website read: “Due to current economic realities and the lack of ongoing funding for WOXY’s operations, we’ve been forced to suspend our live broadcasts as of March 23rd. We’re continuing to explore options to keep The Future of Rock and Roll alive.”

This is devastating news for me. Having been an intern at the station since November, I can safely say it is one of the best things that has ever happened to me. I felt honored to be a part of one of the most influential radio stations, one that was a true pioneer in the independent music movement. Working for the station gave me the rare opportunity to work closely with the music that means so much to me, and to share that passion with other people through my playlists and working on the charts. In addition, I felt like I was a part of a family, as Mike, Shiv, Paige, Bryan, Joe, and interns Bobby and Larry are easily some of the nicest and friendliest people I have ever met.

WOXY’s closure has implications that extend far beyond a personal level. The station was one of the first FM stations to play music from independent labels when they first started broadcasting in 1983. They were promoters of bands who were a little left of center and who otherwise might not have gotten attention outside their hometowns. Even though they had to change mediums from FM to internet only in 2004, they continued to promote the same independent spirit that molded their formation. The station gained a great amount of respect over the years, as they received accolades from everyone from Rolling Stone to The Wall Street Journal.

Losing stations like WOXY marks a sad time in the radio industry. In an increasingly corporate radio world, they were on the front lines of the resistance, the stations who would not have it with the status quo. To see them fall because of the tough economy is a sign that there ought to be better funding for independent radio stations.

WOXY, thank you for fighting the good fight as long as you did. I will miss all of you, and I promise to use my experience to make the music world a better place.

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