NASWA Journal Columns · Pirate Radio Report, December 1997

Chris Lobdell • P.O. Box 146 • Stoneham, MA 02180-0146 clobdell◊

Pirate Radio Report, December 1997

MV Electra Radioship Update

The MV Electra is all finished and ready to go. The latest delay was caused by the need to hire a new pilot and one has just been signed up. An organization called Frontline International [this is a religious group] is now identified as funder of the project. Weiner no longer expects the the ship will carry the Yesterday USA Network. As we mentioned before, there is one 10 kw shortwave transmitter and a 1 kw backup installed on the ship. The antenna is an inverted V without much gain, but the sea water will help. Weiner says that his part of the project, installing the radio equipment is done, and he will not be sailing with the ship to the Caribbean.

Dr. Scott Becker [the disbarred lawyer] says that the project is fully funded and has plenty of money. [Hauser, RIB via WOR; NU #1450] On a snowy Sunday morning, November 23rd, I drove the 15 miles down to see if the MV Electra was still in port. It was still there, now painted in purple and white. All its lights were lit and the diesel engine was chugging away. Calls to the ship have gone unreturned, so I haven’t been able to get any first hand information.

The FCC Cracks Down On FM Pirates

Over the past couple of months, the FCC has been closing many of these low powered stations in various cities throughout the US. This is due partly in response to the NAB [National Association Of Broadcasters] who urged the FCC to do this, claiming they were QRMing legitimate stations.

A couple of members have sent in interesting newspaper articles on the FM scene. Bruce Barker in PA sent us an article on Doug Brewer’s “Tampa’s Party Pirate” from the 10-21 edition of the Wall Street Journal. This station was raided and silenced in mid-November along with two other Tampa pirates. One operator was even jailed because of pot and related items that were found during the bust. Publisher Bill Oliver sent an article from The Philadelphia Enquirer about WSKR-FM, a pirate in West Philly that had recently been closed by the FCC. The good news is that the FCC seems to have their hands full with the FM guys. There hasn’t been a bust of a shortwave pirate in about three years.


ALTERED STATES RADIO was noted with their Halloween special on November 1st at 1900 on 6955 kHz USB. They announced the Box 293, Merlin, Ontario NOP1WO maildrop. [Dave Krause-OH]

FRIDAY RADIO was heard on October 16th on 6955 kHz USB at 2337 sign on, featuring pop mx and a crazed announcer yelling “We are freer than Hell” over and over. [Bill Wilkins-MO]

RADIO AZTECA, the station that broadcasts “everything that’s gross but tasteful” was heard on November 2nd on 6955 kHz USB at 2309 with music and “we are not making these up” news items submitted by listeners. [Eric Bueneman-MO] The station was also heard on 1 Nov. at 1935 by Dave Krause in Ohio.

RADIO FREE SPEECH had their Halloween Show airing on November 2nd at 1430 UTC on 6955 kHz in the AM mode. A “scary” QSL card was offered for correct reception reports. [Krause-OH]

Thanks for the reports guys! Until next month, Happy Pirate DX!

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