Dear Friend of CHIRP,
We are so pleased to report that the Local Community Radio Act is moving along quickly in the House of Representatives, and may be voted on next week! The bill has never been this far, and we feel confident that we will prevail in passing it out of the House. However, we need your help to make sure that this happens. This Monday December 13, 2009, we are asking all friends and supporters of CHIRP to participate in CHIRP House of Representatives Call In Day.
The Chicago Independent Radio Project (CHIRP) asks you to tell your Representative to VOTE YES on The Local Community Radio Act of 2009 (HR 1147). There are currently over 800 LPFM stations operated by schools, churches, civic groups, and other nonprofit organizations across the country – but, because of limitations imposed by Congress in 2000, there are still many more groups like CHIRP who are waiting for LPFM service to be expanded so we can have a chance to apply for a station too. The Local Community Radio Act of 2009 (HR 1147 / S 592) would expand Low Power FM radio, potentially opening the airwaves to tens of thousands of new community radio stations across the country.
Please help CHIRP have a chance to apply for a low power FM signal by asking your Representative to VOTE YES when the Local Community Radio Act comes to the floor – maybe as soon as next week! It takes just a few minutes to make one phone call following the instructions below, and you’ll be helping ensure that this bill passes in the House of Representatives next week!
ACTION STEPS FOR CHIRP HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES CALL IN DAY
Look up your Congressional Representative. Go to http://www.congress.org if you don’t know who your Representative is.
Find out if he or she is a co-sponsor of the Local Community Radio Act.
Call your representative and follow the appropriate script below.
For your convenience, we have provided a list of Illinois-area representatives, their phone numbers, and where they stand on the Act.
“Hi, my name is (NAME) and I’m calling from Chicago, Illinois. I’m calling Representative (NAME) today to thank her/him for her/his support of the Local Community Radio Act, HR 1147. This bill is important to me because I am a supporter of the Chicago Independent Radio Project, a group working to bring a low power FM community radio station to Chicago. This Local Community Radio Act will expand low power FM radio service to hundreds of community organizations, churches and other groups like CHIRP across the country. I thank the Representative for taking leadership on this issue, and hope that she/he will continue to do everything possible to help this Act pass in 2009. The Act is going to come to the floor of the House for a vote this week, and I would like to ask that the Representative do everything that he/she can to help it pass. Can I count on the Representative for her/his support? Thank you.”
District 2 Rep. Jackson, Jesse – (202) 225-0773
District 4 Rep. Gutierrez, Luis – (202) 225-8203
District 17 Rep. Hare, Phil – (202) 225-5905
District 14 Rep. Foster, Bill (202) 225-2976
District 15 Rep. Johnson, Timothy – 202-225-2371
District 9 Rep. Schakowsky, Janice – (202) 225-2111
NOT CURRENT CO-SPONSORS
“Hi, my name is (NAME) and I’m calling from Chicago, Illinois. I’m calling Representative (NAME) today to ask her/him for her/his support of the Local Community Radio Act, HR 1147. This bill is important to me because I am a supporter of the Chicago Independent Radio Project, a group working to bring a low power FM community radio station to Chicago. This Local Community Radio Act will expand low power FM radio service to hundreds of community organizations, churches and other groups like CHIRP across the country. I am asking Representative (NAME) to join with his/her colleagues in signing on as a co-sponsor of the Act, and voting YES next week when the Act comes to the floor of the House for a vote. Can I count on the Representative for her/his support and vote of YES? Thank you.”
District 1 Rep. Rush, Bobby – 202-225-4372
District 3 Rep. Lipinski, Daniel – (202) 225-5701
District 5 Rep. Quigley, Mike – 202.225.4061 (CHIRP’s office is in his district)
District 6 Rep. Roskam, Peter – (202) 225-4561]
District 7 Rep. Davis, Danny 202/225-5006
District 8 Rep. Bean, Melissa 202-225-3711
District 10 Rep. Kirk, Mark 202-225-4835
District 11 Rep. Halvorson, Deborah (202) 225-3635
District 12 Rep. Costello, Jerry (202) 225-5661
District 13 Rep. Biggert, Judy 202-225-3515
District 16 Rep. Manzullo, Donald (202) 225-5676
District 18 Rep. Schock, Aaron 202.225.6201
District 19 Rep. Shimkus, John (202) 225-5271
IF YOU’RE FROM OUTSIDE ILLINOIS, YOU CAN FIND YOUR ELECTED OFFICIALS AND THEIR CONTACT INFORMATION AT CONGRESS.ORG.
GENERAL TIPS FOR CALLING CONGRESS
Call during regular business hours (between 9am and 5pm), when Congressional offices are open.
You’ll most likely be speaking with an assistant to the Congressperson who will take down your name, address, and a note about what bill you are calling about, which side of the position you are on, and what you are asking the Congressperson to do. Speak clearly and slowly so they can understand you.
Always be polite! Your call is a reflection on all supporters, and loosing your head could hurt our cause. Remember that the staffer who answers the phone may be busy, overworked, or unfamiliar with the issue.
Add in your personal connection to the Act – tell your Congressperson why this issue affects you. For example, if you are a musician, you may want to talk about how your band could get more exposure on an LPFM radio station.
Keep your call brief, no more than five minutes.
If you are transferred to a voicemail, leave your name, address (including zip code) and one or two sentences about the bill and what you are asking the Congressperson to do.
When you’re finished, hand the phone to a friend, roommate, family member or co-worker, and ask them to call too. The more calls in one day, the more impact!
Thank you so much for your help!
—the CHIRP legislative team
Throughout the month of December we’ll be posting lists of the best music of the year as determined by the volunteers that make CHIRP what it is. Today’s is from CHIRP volunteer, David Staples.
National Skyline – Bliss & Death (Self-Released) Amazon / iTunes
National Skyline grew from the broken pieces of Hum. Only available through download, Bliss & Death is an epic and emotional roller coaster, and by far my personal favorite release from Nat. Skyline. It’s a shoegaze wall of sound flavored with layered guitar harmony. I can’t say enough. Ok… I’ll go ahead and say it: This is the best album I’ve heard in years.
Camera Obscura – My Maudlin Career (4ad) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
his album breaks my heart every time I hear it. Tracyanne Campbell’s voice is simply arresting. Of the eleven songs on the album, I called nine of them my favorite of the bunch at one time or another during the period that I spent steeping and soaking and immersing myself in this outstanding release.
Engineers – Three Facts Fader (K Scope) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
My Shoegaze appreciation indicator needle redlined and then snapped with a rifle sound when I first heard this. This is just the kind of trancey Shoegaze bliss that a fella could get lost in (..could also make you drive faster than you’d intended, or maybe miss your train stop). These guys have been around for awhile, but this is only their second release in the past 5 years.
Andrew Bird – Noble Beast (Fat Possum) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
This was my first exposure to Andrew Bird which makes it harder to compare it to his earlier releases, but I’ll say this: If you’re into masterful violin, lyric and whistling that’s waaay better than the temp in the cubicle next to you.. then you’re in the right place, kiddo. This album is full of songs that patiently build & grow to fill your room or headphones. Shut your eyes and smile.
Neko Case – Middle Cyclone (Anti) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
The first track, “This Tornado Loves You” grabbed me by the throat immediately. I listened to it over and over so many times that it took me days to come to the realization that the rest of the album was just as perfect. Neko Case’s vocals are what makes it so great. Piercing and sharp enough to shake down a brick building, warm enough to warp your record collection.. (if you leave it too close to the speakers)
Isis – Wavering Radiant (Ipecac) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
I’m definitely not a fan of “cookie monster” vocals. I’m normally put off by it, but Isis uses them as ‘another tool in the box’ rather than as a foundation of the sound that makes up Isis. In this context it’s not only tolerable, but completely at home and quite essential. I don’t know how to categorize Isis, but if i were pressed, I’d probably end up calling it “odyssey metal”. There are layers and layers, and songs within songs here, and the whole thing feels the soundtrack to a Homerian or Tolkenian epic. (am I being mellow-dramatic?)
Dinosaur Jr. – Farm (Jagjaguwar) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
The ninth full album from Dinasour Jr since they began in the mid-80’s, Farm took me by surprise. I thought “how can these guys keep making great music? aren’t they just milking the whole reunion tour thing?”. But no, despite my lack of expectations it won me over instantly. (I should know better, I suppose). Farm features twelve songs of great guitar work from J. Mascis, and those who followed Lou Barlow to Sebadoh and Folk Implosion will be able to hear his influence throughout the album. I especially enjoy the songs Lou Barlow wrote and sings, such as “Imagination Blind” and “your weather”.
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart – Self-Titled (Slumberland) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
The Pains of Being Pure At Heart are a noisy and upbeat indie rock band from New York City. This ten song Debut full length album of theirs wants to be played loudly. This stuff brightens your mood and quickens your pulse (its good music to clean your apartment to. You’ll be done in half the time!) A couple of the songs on this album remind me of pre-Lovless My Bloody Valentine. I guess it’s just that same kind of happy distortion that I associate between the two.
Metric – Fantasies (Metric Music Intl.) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
Sexy indie-stadium pop from Canada. Here’s another one that dominated my playlist for weeks when I first got it. Fantasies is solid, catchy and high energy album. Any of the first twelve songs could stand on their own in a mix CD for your new girlfriend or boyfriend. <3 😉
It Hugs Back – Inside Your Guitar (4ad) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
This album came out of nowhere for me. I still don’t remember where I first heard it, but who cares?
It’s all a dose of blissfull dream pop wholesomeness. Soft vocals and warm melodies are plenty. This is one of those albums that I found myself playing back in my head as I wandered through the grocery store or at work. I love it when that happens because it simmers and brews in my head all day and I have something to look forward to as soon as I get my hands on my little electric jukebox.
Short list of best albums not from 2009 that I only just now discovered:
Torche – Meanderthal (from 2008) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
Torche is currently a three piece outfit from Miami Florida. Fast and heavy sludge metal, Meanderthal is a solid album from top to bottom and the songs fit together nicely. One notable example is the way “Healer” runs into “Across The Sheilds” (songs 6 and 7). This album charges me up and just flat-out blows my mind. There should be an Interview with lead guitar & vocalist Steve Brooks on The Apparatus quite soon.
Witchcraft – The Alchemist (from 2007) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
Black Sabbath-esque doom metal from Sweden. These guys sound like they stepped out of the 70s with their vintage sound. The lyrics are mostly in English, but a bit of Swedish (I assume) too. Great stuff… very listenable.
Band of Horses – Cease to Begin (2007) & Everything All the Time (2006) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
As Neko Case is the Female Vocalist whose voice can pierce through 2 inches of military grade steel, Band of Horses’ Ben Bridwell is the Male counterpart. I’m late on the bandwagon, they’ve been pretty well exposed before I ended up hearing them for the first time in a freestyle street bike video:
Very, very short list of albums that I’ve only heard once as of the writing of this list, and therefore didn’t deem it fair to include them (it) on the list despite the fact that it’s awesome:
Them Crooked Vultures – Self-Titled (Columbia) Amazon / Insound / iTunes
Josh Homme, Dave Grohl, and a little bassist known the world over as John Paul Jones. (!) Supergroups often don’t live up to expectations to say the least. However, when I listened to this album at a friend’s house, my skeptical ear did not find one single half-baked or hokey moment throughout. TCV has my attention, and I’m going out to buy it right… nowwww… P.S. you can clearly hear the John Paul Jones signature in the basslines, and that’s awesome.