Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Pirate Cat Radio Plays It Off Legit

"Monkey time: After 13 years as the operator of a pirate radio station out of the Mission, Daniel Roberts, who changed his legal name to "Monkey," has gone legit. Since last spring, the 29-year-old Roberts has been fighting a $10,000 fine from the Federal Communications Commission for allegedly broadcasting his Pirate Cat Radio on the FM band without a valid license. Now he's taken the reins of KPDO, a moribund community station in Pescadero (San Mateo County). The signal has been licensed since 2006, but its founder, Celeste Worden, an educator, has moved out of town, leaving the station on autopilot, playing mostly classical music. Roberts, who'd long wanted to acquire a license for Pirate Cat, heard about the largely deserted signal late last year and presented a program plan to Worden, emphasizing public service, local news and education.

"She called me one morning at 6," said Roberts, "and said she'd read her tarot cards, and said, 'I'm gonna give you the station.' " Roberts has built a small studio ("all from recycled materials"), put together a DJ staff (half of them students from Pescadero High School) and was scheduled to hit the air May 8. The station is a 100-watter for now, reaching north only as far as San Gregorio. But it's online as well, at"

- 16 May 2010, San Francisco Chronicle

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