Over 100 radio stations will go vinyl-only for charity event Vinylthon 2020, with many stations broadcasting from their DJ’s homes
Despite severe disruptions caused by the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, across the USA and the world, radio stations will celebrate the unique format of vinyl by going vinyl-only on Vinylthon, April 18, 2020. Organizers hope it will provide essential comfort to listeners through entertainment during this difficult time.
“As many radio stations are currently closed, we have now moved to an almost entirely online celebration of vinyl,” says Rob Quicke, founder of Vinylthon. “We have very quickly adapted to our circumstances, so that now many participants will be broadcasting their shows from home, playing vinyl from their own turntables! We have gone completely digital in our celebration of something wonderfully analog!” says Quicke.
Organized by the College Radio Foundation and open to all radio stations, commercial and non-commercial, Vinylthon is the radio industry’s response to the remarkable vinyl renaissance that has occurred around the world. The College Radio Foundation gives grants to college radio stations to keep them on the air. Vinylthon 2020 will be the fifth Vinylthon event, and proceeds will go to their College Radio Fund that supports college radio stations.
Stations participating in this year’s Vinylthon will win the Golden Slipmat Award, sponsored by Glowtronics, to recognize their deep passion for vinyl. Vinylthon is an event for the entire radio industry, which normally takes place on worldwide Record Store Day.
“This year we are having two Vinylthon celebrations,” says Quicke. “The first is on April 18, when Record Store Day was originally scheduled. But when they moved to June 20, we heard from stations that they preferred to move also. Some stations are celebrating both dates. So really, we are considering this year’s Vinylthon to be a double-album edition, with Side One taking place on April 18th!”
Participation in Vinylthon is free for non-commercial radio stations, but there is a fee for commercial radio stations, which goes straight to the College Radio Foundation, which organizes the event. “Commercial radio stations that participate are paying it forward to the next generation of professional broadcasters, who really need the support,” says Quicke.