KEXP 90.3 FM — Seattle, Washington
Seattle’s best public radio station, a partnership between the University of Washington and Paul Allen’s Experience Music Project, highlights the best new alternative music from around the globe. Best known for its live studio sessions, KEXP is frequently among the first significant media outlets to showcase up-and-coming bands, which makes it a fantastic place to listen to music before all your Spotify-loving buddies.
KCRW 89.9 FM — Santa Monica, California
A National Public Radio member station based out from the Santa Monica College campus, KCRW was set in 1945 to train ex-servicemen in the then-emerging technology of radio. Now, it’s a fantastic place to locate emerging music. Creators of the famous Morning Becomes Eclectic radio program, a show that highlights new music and lives performances from indie artists, KCRW is a fantastic place to listen to well-curated musical selections, as well as to grab on national news.
XRAY.fm KXRY 107.1 FM — Portland, Oregon
Portland’s praised independent radio station serves up the sounds of the city’s popular underground music scene to a worldwide audience. A crowdfunded station formed in 2012, XRAY provides a selection of music and talk radio programming and has been broadcasting around the clock for years now thanks to the assistance of almost 70 part-time DJs.
KUTX 98.9 FM — Austin, Texas
Owned and operated by the University of Texas at Austin, KUTX showcases a vast range of programming, out of indie and pop to disco along with other genres. It’s an eclectic mix of shows, but they’re each exceptionally vibrant and well-curated, which makes it a fantastic place to find something.
WFMU 91.1 FM — Jersey City
WFMU is the granddaddy of them all. The longest-running independent radio station in the U.S. can also be among the best internet radio stations online. This listener-funded station supplies a free-form variety of shows which are sure to offer something for everyone. Such formatting can a blessing and a curse, as listeners will be prodded by some hours to tune in elsewhere.