Here’s What to Expect from The Independent 89.9 HD4, Our New Music Discovery Station

Collage of artists played on The Independent
Credit: (From left) Press photos of Robert Glasper, Lala Lala, Guerilla Toss, Cass McCombs, Kevin Morby, Wet Leg, Angel Olsen, Sasami, King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard, Leo Sun, Arcade Fire, Luna Luna, Wiz Khalifa, Big K.R.I.T. and Girl Talk and Nulifer Yanya courtesy of the artists

Today, WJCT Public Media and the Jacksonville Music Experience officially unveiled The Independent 89.9 HD4, our new music discovery radio station.

Folks of a certain age may be wondering: What’s a radio station? Well, long before subscription music services (Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal) made available the entirety of recorded music for a flat monthly fee, radio stations provided the connective tissue between curious listeners and the best new music of the day.

Despite the algorithmic disadvantages non-commercial, nonprofit music stations (like The Independent 89.9 HD4) are still thriving, while fostering communities of music lovers. 

As a longtime Jacksonville resident, I’ve always wondered why we didn’t have a station that played more than the top of the pop charts or classic hits from a bygone era. And listen, don’t get me wrong, when it comes to music, I love everything. But there hasn’t been a place to consistently discover new music or even hear songs from some of the more inventive artists from the past decades (other than jaxmusic.org, of course). 

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With the Independent 89.9 HD4, one of our goals is to champion artists that are largely ignored by commercial radio –– emerging and established artists creating new work in popular genres, which includes artists making music right here in Jacksonville. From 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., You’ll hear the best new music from innovative artists working in a range of genres from indie rock and hip-hop, R&B, jazz, electronic, modern global and more. 

As a broader goal, we hope that this listening experience –– paired with the content we’re continuing to crank out on jaxmusic.org –– not only fills a void in the community by offering a platform for local artists. But we also aim to help build a community of curious listeners –– folks who, whether they play music or not –– are interested in discovering new music and supporting innovative music with their ears and (fingers crossed) dollars. 

Unlike Spotify, we don’t know everything about your listening tastes. But we see that as an advantage. Hopefully we introduce you to something new, encourage you to give an artist a second listen or even, on occasion challenge you.

Savvy JME followers will recall that HD4 was previously home to Electro Lounge Radio. Not to worry, fans of David Luckin’s curated mix of downtempo lounge, reggae, nu jazz will be happy to know that Electro Lounge will play a vital role as the after hours programming on the Independent. 

Here’s what you can expect to hear on the Independent 89.9 HD4

  • Brand new music at the top of the hour all day
  • Chillout, downtempo, nu jazz and reggae with Electro Lounge at night
  • A song by a Northeast Florida artist 20 minutes after the hour, every hour

Now, you may be wondering: How do I listen? You can start by heading over to jaxmusic.org/the-independent, where you can stream the station from your desktop, smartphone, tablet, etc. You can also listen through your car stereo (89.9 HD4) or on the WJCT app.  

After you’ve lent us your ear, we wanna know what you think. Like everything we do at WJCT Public Media, this station depends on the support of those who use our services. The Independent is, and will be, listener powered. Like what you’re hearing? Have a question about a song we played? Want us to never play a certain song ever again? Or have a suggestion for an artist we should check out?

Drop me a line at music@wjct.org. I’d love to hear from you. 

For now, I hope you’ll hit play on the Independent 89.9 HD4. Feel free to share when you’re listening (and tag us, @jmejaxmusic on Instagram and Twitter and Facebook). 

The Independent 89.9 HD4 is part of WJCT Public Media and the Jacksonville Music Experience

The Jacksonville Music Experience is fostering a community of music lovers by identifying, showcasing, and championing music that inspires. By creating meaningful music experiences on air, online and in person, JME harnesses the emotional power of art to strengthen our communities. 

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