Radio Dead sees record audiences

By James Cridland for
Posted 22 April 2016, 8.32am edt


Steve Penk's new project, Radio Dead - a radio station that just plays songs from performers who have died - is a surprise hit.

As Prince's death was announced, audience increased ten-fold to the station.

Mexican TV Televisa, the biggest Spanish language broadcaster in Spanish in the world, reported on Radio Dead to their millions of viewers in Mexico, Latin America, USA and Spain. There's been a large amount of requests from Spanish listeners.

Dennis Locorriere, the lead singer of Dr Hook, has highlighted that Radio Dead is one radio station that people don't want to be on. "If you hear me on this station, let me know and I'll lie down," he tweeted, adding "I will check your playlist each morning before I bother to make tea".

Radio Dead plays songs from performers who are no longer with us, including singers, guitarists, keyboard players, drummers and famous backing singers. Since it focuses on performers, The Bangles' Manic Monday won't be making the playlist, in spite of being written by Prince under a pen-name; but, of course, Prince's own work will.

Steve said: 'I developed the radio station format as an uplifting positive tribute to all the wonderful artists who are sadly no longer with us. So many of them never get played on the radio anymore, which is a tragedy, so I want to keep their music very much alive and remind people how great these artists are.'

Penk adds that he's also had requests to not add either Justin Bieber or Adele to the playlist, should either artist meet their maker, kick the bucket, shuffle off their mortal coil, run down the curtain and join the choir invisible: "Listeners are now contacting me saying, should Justin Bieber or Adele die, could I NOT play them on Radio Dead as they're sick of hearing them on every other bloody radio station 68 times a day"

You can listen to both Radio Dead and The Steve Penk wind-up channel online.

More information

Radio Dead
UK, Australia & New Zealand
James Cridland — James runs, and is a radio futurologist: a consultant, writer and public speaker who concentrates on the effect that new platforms and technology are having on the radio business. He also publishes a free daily newsletter about podcasting, Podnews, and a weekly radio trends newsletter.


5 years ago

With all the deaths this year , it'll be pretty mainstream soon, like all the others .

5 years ago

Tuned in on Friday. Actually really good, and as he points out, no Adele!

Login or register to comment
It only takes a second with your Google or Facebook account.