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Sale of WVIP 93.5 FM Will Not Hinder Sound Chat Radio's Success

Station's Owner Garfield "Chin" Bourne Credits Sustainability to Digital Presence and Syndication.


Sound Chat Radio Founder Garfield "Chin" Bourne
Sound Chat Radio Founder Garfield "Chin" Bourne (Photo Credit: Acclaim PR)

The sale of WVIP 93.5 FM in New York was a shock to many, including Sound Chat Radio, who is celebrating their 12th Anniversary all year long. Although WVIP 93.5 FM has been a pillar of Caribbean focused programming, Sound Chat Radio is confident their station will thrive, as they are the pioneer of Caribbean digital radio. Namely, the station will resume it's top notch Caribbean talk, community and music shows via the Sound Chat Radio app and their website www.soundchatradio.com.


According to Bourne, an investment in digital technology was made from the very beginning of Sound Chat Radio. As a result, the station's digital listenership actually surpassed that from traditional radio. So, while the sale was a surprise, it will not cripple Sound Chat Radio’s infrastructure. The sale of WVIP 93.5 FM could aid in the growth of Sound Chat Radio's digital footprint, further solidifying them as powerhouse platform.

"The fact is, we can't continue to feel that despite the world changing around us daily, the way people enjoy radio will stay the same!! Radio has to move with the times and technology," Bourne says compassionately.

"It has to be fun, informative, entertaining and convenient to listen to. Digital radio allows our listeners to tune in from anywhere in the world at any time. Traditional radio has boundaries that prevent such comfort," adds Bourne.

Amidst the news of the sale, Sound Chat Radio had recently reached quite the milestone in their anniversary commemorations with an invite from New York City Mayor Eric Adams (via Jose Bayona, Executive Director, Mayors Office of Ethnic & Community Media) to visit City Hall. Specifically, Mayor Adams will present Sound Chat Radio founder Garfield "Chin" Bourne with a proclamation for the work he's done over the years.


Sound Chat Radio Founder Garfield "Chin" Bourne is confident that his platform's digital footprint will allow it to thrive despite sale of WVIP 93.5 FM. (Photo Credit: Acclaim PR)


Notably, Sound Chat Radio's philanthropic efforts authentically separate the station from their radio contemporaries in the Caribbean space. With community involvement as a key part of their mission, Sound Chat Radio has built an undeniable presence with food drives, giveaways and addressing community issues. These factors, in part, captured the attention of Mayor Adams' Office.

"I have worked very hard from the beginning," says Bourne. "With our digital broadcasting options and the willingness of the Mayor's Office to assist us in becoming an official media entity in the State of New York, I believe Sound Chat Radio is positioned to soar to the next level with or without WVIP 93.5 FM." In addition to broadcasting on their branded digital platforms, Sound Chat Radio reaches millions of listeners monthly through syndication in over 30 cities, spanning several countries. Aside from the U.S., the station has an immense presence in the UK, Canada and the Caribbean. Hot topics, high profile guests and listener engagement are key drivers of Sound Chat Radio's success.

The Journey Sound Chat Radio has had an amazing journey. What started as a weekly talk show every Monday 7 to 10 PM, built from the ground up by Garfield "Chin" Bourne of Irish and Chin and Rohan "Ninja" Henry of Mighty Crown, quickly became a hit, syndicated show overnight.

"I believe the popularity of the Irish and Chin brand helped fuel the rapid growth," says Bourne. "We literally grew from one radio station and country to the next. Ninja was instrumental in the show's evolution, as he shared a vision with me to create a platform to discuss and promote sound system culture and put in the work."

When reflecting on the journey of the syndicated Sound Chat Radio show, which evolved into a round-the-clock station, Bourne points out the difficulty in building the platform and the initial rejection he received from peers and many top selectors and personalities.

"Our industry colleagues only respected us for sound clashes and large events...NOT for radio! We had to fight for it!! We eventually created a powerhouse team of talented personalities and sound system selectors, as reflected today on Sound Chat Radio," says Bourne.

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