April 2, 2011

Declaration of Independents

Filed under: Declaration of Independents — jenny @ 7:35 am

Most of you know I love bookstores, especially independent, charming, nooky, quirky ones like this and this and this. And of course, this.

But fewer of you might know that I love independent radio as well. I’m a member of WFUV out of Fordham. And WNTI out of nearby Centenary College.

Just recently I had an encounter that shows better than anything why we need to cherish and support independents of all sorts.

I heard this fantastic song driving home. It was the sort of song you would never hear on commercial radio–and don’t worry, I’m going to link to it so you can hear for yourself the soaring voice on the female vocalist, the potential of this up and coming band–but I didn’t get its name.

So when I got home, I emailed the station, and within an hour got a response from the Music Director himself, Spider Glenn, a guy who seems to me like a celebrity at this station, which sets so much of my life to  soundtrack.

The DJ got back to me that very night. I felt like Rob Lowe had just shown up in my in box. Or Charlie Sheen–before he went nuts. (Dating myself here).

Anyway, he didn’t know the name of the song, but based on my vague hints, and umm, umm’s, it went kinda like this (I mean, I was basically humming bars here) he made a couple of suggestions.

Then he went into the station and wrote me a fourth time.

He’d found the song.

Can you imagine a world where corporations drive the playlists and you don’t even need a human body to spin them? A world where corporate chooses which books appear on shelves, as opposed to the passionate editor who falls in love with one?

I can.  [Shudder.]

And I’ll work to oppose both in whatever small ways I can.

Please join me. Support the independents around you. Search out your local bookstore and radio station. If you can, shop at the former, make a donation to the latter. If you can’t, volunteer to read a book to the kids whose parents might like to browse, or staff the phones during fundraiser week.

Declare your independence.


  1. Amen!

    Comment by Jean Henry Mead — April 2, 2011 @ 8:59 am

  2. And don’t forget those small credit unions. Much more customer-friendly than bank-o-sauri.

    Comment by Carolyn J. Rose — April 2, 2011 @ 1:55 pm

  3. Wonderful post, Jenny, and I’m impressed by the level of help you got at the independent radio station, it sounds amazing! Love the sentiment you expressed, and I’ll do my best to go “independent” as often as I can.

    Comment by Becca — April 2, 2011 @ 3:03 pm

  4. I heart independents!

    Comment by Judy — April 2, 2011 @ 3:08 pm

  5. With one of the big boys leaving the Des Moines area, only one is left along with the independent smaller stores. With the internet, shopping can be so much easier, too. Especially, if they’re local.

    Comment by Stephen Brayton — April 3, 2011 @ 2:25 pm

  6. Wonderful post, Jenny! Us Independents really appreciate those who support and love what we do. I think it’s fantastic that he was able to figure out what song you were talking about. Reminds me of all the times folks come into the shop asking, “I know I saw this book… it was blue… with a dog on it…” ‘Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein?’ “Yes!” :)

    It’s the little things that make the difference and Indies have them in droves. :D Thank you for all you do!

    Comment by Becky — April 5, 2011 @ 11:11 am

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