A few years back, I had unsuccessfully tried to find a radio station where I could listen to primarily Texas Country music. Living in Massachusetts, I had stopped listening to mainstream radio part way through college. Just to clarify, mainstream radio at that time was nowhere near as bad as it has been these last five or so years. So during college, I remember trying to find a Texas country station and didn’t have the best luck. I had found Waco 100 and heard some Pat Green and a few others on there, but still not enough Texas country. Enter The Red Dirt Rebel 105.3
Lubbock, Texas has been gaining a reputation for it’s music culture and a small radio station has been working hard to spread it. Known as 105.3 The Red Dirt Rebel, this little station is the little engine that could. It is technically a large market station, but it is not some huge commercial type radio station. A station like 95.9 The Ranch is a monster in Texas, but The Red Dirt Rebel has it’s own local West-Texas flavor that many find appealing. Some will remember the controversy that has surrounded The Ranch and their attempt at bringing some mainstream artists to the play-list. Yeah, that didn’t go so well and was pulled off the air, returning to it’s original form. 105.3 TRDR has maintained its commitment to the up-and-coming artists, many of which I have not heard on other Texas stations.
Since I am obviously far beyond the FM range of listening to 105.3, I used their app and also streamed online. It was incredible to be able to hear new artists and allowed me to continue to add to my library. All was well until this past winter when I suddenly began to have issues with the streaming. The app would not work, the online browser version would lock-up and start repeating or go down all together. It was beyond frustrating and ultimately I wasn’t able to listen any longer. I saw that I was not alone and moved on to 95.9 The Ranch and have enjoyed that station very much as well.
The Red Dirt Rebel 105.3 Website
For a few months, the station seemed to struggle as people were understandably bewildered as to what was going on. Progress seemed lacking for improvement and resolution. I would check in periodically to see if anything had changed and unfortunately it hadn’t. How could a station with the reputation of 105.3 not fix the issue? Well, an explanation came soon enough.
One of the hosts and program directors, JR, hosted a Facebook live event on Saturday May 6, 2017 and discussed the woes of the station. As it turned out, the radio software they were using was having issues and they were awaiting a much more user friendly and higher quality system. Unfortunately, it was back-ordered, leaving them floundering around for a while in the meantime. Both JR and station owner, Dave Walker, reiterated to viewers that they were doing everything they could to get the station back at full operating potential. Sure enough, they were good to their word.
From keeping up with their posts on Facebook, I can see JR is working to ignite their social media presence and continue to grow the station. With technology rapidly advancing, these smaller stations need to do their best to keep up. Streaming has really changed how us listeners consume our music, so relevancy is key. I have been happy to see The Red Dirt Rebel is back on track and helping the people of Lubbock and beyond, the stay up on the great sounds of Texas and Red Dirt country music.
Follow the Red Dirt Rebel on Facebook and Check out their website to access live streaming!
Just a Massachusetts guy supporting Texas and other independent country/Americana artists.
Check out my spotify for good tunes!