“I left KPRI for a few reasons. The biggest,” former Homegrown Hour host Cathryn Beeks tells the Reader, “is that I wasn’t going to be able to play and represent all genres of our San Diego music scene anymore.” Beeks names hip-hop and country music among them.
“What I played in the future was going to be restricted. So I decided it was best to move on.” She says she thought that her show could better serve the local music community from the internet.
“And, I didn’t think KPRI cared about the Homegrown Hour brand, since I’d received little support from the station during my five years there. I knew the show had started on KGB FM, so I didn’t think it would be a big deal for me to move it to Listen Local Radio. Well, it was a big deal, apparently.”
Beeks is a performer, entrepreneur, and host of audition showcases. Since 2004, she has owned and operated Listenlocalsd.com, an online resource for bands and singer/songwriters. During the spring of 2009, Beeks was asked by then-host Astra Kelly to take over as host of KPRI’s version of the Homegrown Hour.
“Station owners didn’t respond to my letter of resignation expressing my intent to take the show elsewhere for almost two weeks. During that time, I spent over $1000 in rebranding efforts,” Beeks says. “I wanted to save the show I had worked so hard on for all those years, but when I learned from my attorney that KPRI was willing to take me to court, I knew I wouldn’t be able to afford the legal fight. I decided to have no further contact and just move on, which I have. Moving forward has been very positive.”
On the upside, Beeks says Lloyd Pest Control is staying with her as a sponsor. “I couldn’t do it without them. I’ll be producing a new show with them called SoCal Artist of the Week. It will air every Thursday on listenlocalradio.com. “Bart Mendoza’s going to have a show called Time Machine, and then there’s [San Diego guitarist] Ronnie Lee’s Rock Tips.
For now, Beeks’s new program, Listen Local, will likewise air on listenlocalradio.com. Would she like to return one day to terrestrial radio?
“KSON is on my wish list. I’m going to be producing a roots music show heavily based in San Diego’s Americana. I’m going to shop it to them.” At the same time, Beeks says she loves the freedom of the internet. She likes that she is not restricted to a set time length or format and can program as much music as she deems air-worthy. “I had a guest on the show who cussed like a sailor,” she says, “and I didn’t have to edit.”