Mutiny Radio is an internet radio station operating from the Mission District of San Francisco, California. The station has an eclectic talk format, hosting local shows with interviews, as well as live performances of comedy, music, hip-hop, theater, storytelling, philosophy and poetry. Shows are streamed live online and made available in podcast form on ITunes and other platforms.
|City||San Francisco, California|
First air date
|June 1, 2011|
- YouTube: Mutiny Radio
- Main Facebook Page; individual shows also have their own pages.
- LinkedIn Page
A mobile application was created in 2020.
The Legacy of Pirate Cat Radio
Mutiny Radio was founded following an ownership dispute of the station's predecessor, in which DJs questioned the leadership and finances of the station, the previous station's live stream and podcast archives were taken offline and the staff decided to reform as a collective with more oversight and accountability. According to a March 2011 statement by the collective members, "Our efforts from the beginning have been to extract ourselves from the ownership situation and focus on our core mission: making quality radio and building a supportive community. That is what we are focusing on now." They stated their plan is to work "more democratically." This reformation initially consisted of putting podcasts up on the website Ustream to maintain radio operations and keep the community intact. DJs continued to work from the former cafe. The full relaunch was ready by the end of May, with Programming Director Aaron Lazenby stating that they were "tired of living in the wake of that drama" and adding that "we’re ready to be something else." There was a closing ceremony on May 31, 2011, hosted by DJ Nylon.
Mutiny Radio Relaunches as an Internet-Based Station
On June 1, 2011, the station was relaunched as Mutiny Radio, a name chosen to reflect "the right balance of where we’ve come from and where we’re going," according to Lazenby, which "showed the scars" of the past, but also expressed their new future. According to the website, the Mutiny Radio live stream "features the same eclectic mix of live music, interviews, DJ performances, news, and comedy the members of the collective have been producing for the past 6 years."
Unlike its predecessor's illegal broadcast, Mutiny Radio is an online-only radio station. In 2012, the station successfully raised over $5,000 through a Kickstarter campaign to be used for rent and other expenses to keep the station operating.
Local Participation, Protest, Activism and Journalism
Past coverage of local events has included Occupy Wall Street West protests, live screenings of the 2012 Presidential Debates in affinity with Occupy the Debates, participation in the Phono del Sol Music and Food Festival, and an annual Block Party in cooperation with the Box Factory and other local businesses. Monthly broadcast events are coordinated with local bar Asiento and Oakland Art Murmur. Mutiny Radio also took part in San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee's honoring of the 50th anniversary of Tony Bennett's recording "I Left My Heart in San Francisco" with other stations across the city.
Guests have ranged from musicians such as George Clinton, Jane Wiedlin, Mary Wilson, Micky Dolenz, Toots and the Maytals, Roky Erickson and punk rocker Meri St. Mary to a variety of local bands. The band Monkey appeared on the show Afternoon Delight in 2017.
Mutiny Radio also hosted local activist and poet "Diamond Dave" Whitaker on the Friday afternoon Common Thread Collective, who was honored in 2016 by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. February 2 is officially Diamond Dave Day in San Francisco. 
Mutiny Radio and San Francisco Comedy
After starting at the station in 2008, in June 2013, comedian, poet, and feminist activist Pamela Benjamin became station director. Since 2016, the station has hosted an annual Comedy festival which airs 25 comedy shows in five days. In 2017, there were approximately 100,000 downloads of podcasts per month.
Many local and famous City, North Bay, and East Bay comedians have hosted or participated in Mutiny Radio shows. Mutiny Radio produced 4 comedy open mics and 2 showcases every week in 2017, and it has continued to offer a variety of comedic programming. Notable contributors include Aaron Atkins, Warhol Kaufman, Rachel Pinson, Ernest Evangelista, Nathan Loe, Mike Evans Jr., Luke Neumann, Mark Noyer, the cast of Sylvan Productions (Vice channel's "Flophouse"), Terry Dorsey (Cobb's Comedy Club), Matthew Quirk, Evelyn "Eerie" Diamond, Bernice Ye, Sunny Dennis, Marty Cunnie (F-Bomb Comedy Train), Chris Ferdinandson and Mike Nordstrom (Like An Adult Podcast), Kala Keller, Alyssa Westerlund (StorySlam Oakland), Steve Poggi, Timothy Renato-Pizza (Fourteen Threes, ToggleDownfall), Kelly Evans, and website developer David Stolowitz (KSCO 107.9 FM Santa Cruz, Ugly Mug, Bocci's Cellar).
The 2019 Comedy Festival was covered in the San Francisco Examiner.
In 2015, scalpers took advantage of a Mutiny Radio free ticket giveaway and attempted to resell tickets on Craigslist using the station's name without permission, harming the station's reputation with music venues.
In July 2019, a video went viral of host Capital Pilcrow being punched by an audience member, who proceeded to destroy the door window on the way out.
Like many small businesses and community organizations, Mutiny Radio has been adversely affected by the Coronovirus-19 Pandemic. Director Benjamin has produced outdoor comedy shows for the Mission since May 2020 to mixed reception. By June, the shows were limited to clean humor only.
Benjamin continues to rely on GoFundMe and Venmo donations to fund the station's increasing rent and operating costs. As of July, $7000 had been raised for rent and maintenance, funding the station for an additional two months of quarantined operation.
- "Mutiny News". Mutiny Radio. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- Waits, Jennifer (March 3, 2011). "Questions Raised at Pirate Cat Radio and KPDO after Leader Leaves the Country". Radio Survivor. Radio Survivor. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- Eskenazi, Joe (23 Feb 2011). "Pirate Cat Radio Walks the Plank". SF Weekly. San Francisco Weekly. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- Smith, Heather (February 20, 2011). "Founder Says Pirate Cat Radio is 'Closed for Now'". Mission Local. Mission Local. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- Waits, Jennifer (May 31, 2011). "Goodbye Pirate Cat Radio, Hello ? Tune in Tomorrow…". Radio Survivor. Radio Survivor. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- Waits, Jennifer (1 June 2011). "Pirate Cat Radio Relaunches Today as Mutiny Radio". Radio Survivor. Radio Survivor. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- Hernandez, Rigoberto (13 March 2012). "Former Pirate Radio Station Goes Legit". Mission Local. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- "Affinity Organizations". Occupy Wall St. West. 20 Jan 2012. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- Flowers, Margaret (2012-09-27). "Mutiny Radio to cover the debates". Occupy The Debates. Archived from the original on 2 March 2013. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- "Scenes from the Phono del Sol Music and Food Festival". The Bay Bridged. 20 July 2011. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- Bohan, Bernadette (15 July 2012). "The Box Factory presents the Florida Street Block Party!". Bernadette Rocks. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- Waits, Jennifer (14 Feb 2012). "SF Mayor Asks Radio Stations to Play "I Left My Heart in San Francisco" at Noon Today". Radio Survivor. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- "George Clinton Visits Mutiny Radio". Mutiny Radio. 10 July 2011. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- ""Afternoon Delight 2017/07/13" (Podcast).
- "Best of the Bay 2012: BEST SMOKE ON THE AIR". San Francisco Bay Guardian. 24 July 2012. Retrieved 30 January 2013.
- "Diamond Dave is improbably turning 82". 2019-11-08.
- "SF's Mutiny Radio Laughs to Stay Afloat". March 2017.
- "Mutiny Radio brings comedy fest to Mission". February 26, 2019.
- "Mutiny Radio Denies Involvement in Craig's List Ticket Scam". January 13, 2015.
- "Audience Member Assaults Comedian During Open Mic Show in San Francisco". July 31, 2019.
- "Mutiny Radio hosts Sidewalk StandUp in the Mission". May 27, 2020.