I already mentioned one great radio reason Chicago rules, but hey! Here’s another (and oddly enough, they both have a bird in the logo…). I heard about Chicago Independent Radio Project, aka CHIRP, the moment I arrived in this city by what feels like osmosis. And it has certainly been a huge part of connecting to a new life in a new city for me. Oh, how I love some homegrown radio, run by people. And for music, there just isn’t a better station in this town. CHIRP started broadcasting online in January of 2010. Its many dedicated volunteers were very active in getting the Local Community Radio Act passed, which allowed for more slots on the dial to open up. They’re now pressuring the FCC to let low-power FM stations apply for those spots, especially in urban areas where dial space is precious. This is in hopes of getting community voices on air and preventing big, corporate stations from repeating their already-in-existence stations on the newly opened spots. When they’re not advocating for community-powered radio, they’re broadcasting awesome music online and supporting a ton of local independent shows and goings on around town. They’re only in their second year of broadcast, and I totally see CHIRP blossoming into a community-run version of KEXP or KCRW. Also, stay tuned for a new series I produce with the CHIRP news department in the coming weeks!