Posted by o please on July 13, 2011 at 12:50:41:
Will enough people be willing to fork over 10 bucks a month to hear a radio show that’s been free for more than 30 years? Steve Dahl is betting his reputation — and the
next phase of his career — that they will.
On Monday, Dahl announced plans to charge a $9.95 monthly subscription fee for access to his daily podcasts, starting August 1. He’s been podcasting from his home since September 2009 without charge to listeners, and claimed as many as 20,000 fans downloaded his program each day. While he’s hoping at least half that number will subscribe to The DahlCast, whether he can come close will depend on how effectively he can market himself in the coming weeks.
“This is our way of staying one step ahead of the curve,” Dahl, 56, said in a statement. “I have the greatest fans — they readily followed me to this new platform, and I am confident that they will continue to support me as I embark on this new and exciting endeavor.”
As noted in Dahl’s press release, Monday’s announcement came one day shy of the 32nd anniversary of Disco Demolition, the historic stunt that certified Dahl as a legend and catapulted his career into immortality. Of greater significance is that it came three days after his contract expired with CBS Radio — leaving him a man without a company or a million-dollar salary.
“I’m sure that I have radio options available to me, but I really haven’t pursued them at this time,” he wrote on his blog. “Most of the companies are either bankrupt or in some sort of odd transitional phase that would make them less than an ideal place to land.”
Although it’s been more than two decades since Dahl’s on-air language landed him in trouble with the FCC and on the front page of Chicago’s newspapers, radio’s original “shock jock” stressed the new freedom he’d enjoy as an unregulated podcaster working for himself: “This will also going to be the first time ever that I will have had no corporate or government interference with regards to my content. That should be fun and different! I’m not going to go ape shit wild, but it’s nice not to have to worry about a one hour meeting in the program director’s office after every show.”
Dahl has been absent from terrestrial radio since December 2008, when his morning show was canceled from WJMK-FM (104.3), the former Jack FM adult hits station. That effectively silenced him from a medium he had redefined — and, for much of the time, dominated — in Chicago since the late 1970s.
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