Radio Valencia, S.F.'s Newest Pirate Station, Begins Broadcasting This Week

Categories: Radio
Flickr/ Laughing Squid
Chez Poulet, home of Radio Valencia, at 3359 Cesar Chavez St.
Radio Valencia, San Francisco's newest pirate radio station, hit the Internet at 4 p.m. yesterday afternoon with its first live webcast -- concert photographer, show promoter and man-about-town Crispin Mccabe's show, Dirty Needles.

The station is currently only available online, but station organizer John Hell (not his real name) says he's heard "rumors" (wink wink) that Radio Valencia will soon be heard over the airwaves at FM 87.9, mostly in the Mission and SOMA neighborhoods.

Radio Valencia operates out of a studio in Chez Poulet, former mayoral candidate Chicken John's warehouse and gallery, near Mission and Caesar Chavez. So far, Hell says, the station has 25 two-hour shows lined up covering a broad variety of musical styles and other topics.

Mccabe's Dirty Needles show airs from 4 to 6 p.m. on Wednesdays, and will play music from local and touring bands, broadcast live shows from the warehouse, and hold interviews. Hell's show is called A Season in Hell and will air a variety of music and interviews Monday nights from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. The Evolution Control Committee will broadcast its mischievous mash-ups at the same slot on Tuesday nights. The Ask Dr. Hal show will air from 8 p.m. to midnight on Fridays.

Hell, a co-founder Radio Free Burning Man and, says the goal of Radio Valencia is "to be a voice in the community."
"I hope when people think of Radio Valencia they'll think of home," Hell explains in an e-mail. "They'll think of a trusted source for alternative expressions of music and opinion, as well as a place where they'll be welcomed to come share their opinions, their culture, their food, their ideas, their love for all things community."

Hell says the station won't shy away from discussing politics, but he said the goal will be to express a range of views rather than take a strong stand on particular issues.

Radio Valencia currently only broadcasts online, but Hell says he's, um, heard that some people might try setting up a transmitter to broadcast its signal over the air. Hell isn't worried that the station could be shut down by the FCC if a transmitter goes live.

"It's inevitable," Hell says. "It's going to happen. You just can't worry about it."

Mccabe wants to have touring bands appear on his show before they play shows in S.F. He says he can offer the bands something a lot of crash pads can't: the free washer and dryer at Chet Poulet.

"They can do their laundry and then guest DJ with me," McCabe says.

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