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Ibiza Island People: Jose Maria Ramon (Ibiza Global Radio)

Before the summer starts we bring back the Ibiza Island People series and talk radio stuff with Mr. Morning Sounds from Ibiza Global Radio...

Where are you from originally?

I am Ibicenco! Also my parents are Ibicencos, so I am 100% pure Eivissenc.

When did you first come to Ibiza?

When I was born on the island, in 1972 :-)

What did you do the first years you were in ibiza?

Well I obviously went to school here and all that...and then, at the tender age of 16 years, I already got into the radio scene here and started working in a rock radio show. I was quite a rocker when I was young and was very much into rockabilly. My friend who did that show on Radio Diario then gave me the opportunity to have my own spot in his show and so I had a 30mins rockabilly slot! At that time I started working at M15, a record shop in Ibiza town, where I stayed for 5 years. After that, I did "los quarenta principales" (the top 40 radio show) for 4 years on Cadena Ser. Then I worked for a while at Europa FM, after that Cadena100, then Radio Exit...and after Radio Exit, I landed at Ibiza Global Radio. So I almost have worked in all of the island's radio stations.

What do most people know you for in Ibiza?

For the music obviously! I think especially since I am working at Ibiza Global Radio, more people actually recognise to my name. At every radio station I worked I learnt something. And during my career, I played a big variety of music genres: I started with rock, then did pop music and hits generally and then started playing a bit of lounge music at Europa FM. That's about ten years ago and that was also the point where I really started getting into the world of electronic music from a professional point of view.

You know, I actually liked electronic music much earlier already, I started DJ'ing when I was about 18 years old. Back then first I played in some small bars in San Antonio and then, with the years, also got to play at these legendary trance parties in the hills of the north of Ibiza. But yeah, only for the last decade I've also been playing electronic music in my radio shows.

Tell us about Ibiza Global Radio and how it came about?

IGR started in 2004 and was an absolutely new experience for the island. Almost all of Ibizas radios were only about commercial pop music. So the idea was to launch a radio station that actually plays and supports the music the international DJ's were bringing to the island summer after summer. It was founded by the father of Anna Tur, who now manages IGR. He had worked at Cadena Cope before and then successfully created Global. I was part of IGR from the very beginning and am now the musical director of the station.

What's the reason behind the recent success of IGR?

I think the main reason for our success was the healthy growth of the station. We started as a very small business and had only our island resident DJ's playing. And then, slowly but steadily, the clubs and promoters got more and more interested and started collaborating and even having their own shows at Global. Over the years, we had people like Carl Cox and Sven Väth in our studios, just to name a few. So that was a very long and slow process and today we're one of the world's most listened electronic music stations.

It's quite interesting to see at what time people actually listen to IGR. We have loads of listeners from Europe who love Morning Sounds, the morning radio show as the name says. They say they love to listen to while at work! And then we have an astounding number of listeners from South America who, due tue the time difference, start tuning in at noon time earliest, but normally are tuned in when it's getting dark here already and the music gets even livelier.

During the last few years we've been really succesful and got rewarded with various awards from deejaymags and just recently, Morning Sounds won the Vicious Music Award for Spain's best radio show. The same show is now also nominated for Spains' best radio show on, so let's see how that goes... Apart of that, but obviously also thanks to the fact Ibiza Global Radio is well-known today, I personally got to play gigs in more than 40 European cities during the last two years.

Tell us who your unsung hero of the island is?

That's definitely Jorge Trelis. He's the owner of the record shop Tot Music, formerly Mega Music in Ibiza town. In a time where less and less people buy music phisically and many record shops close, he stands up straight and keeps defending CD's. Other than that, he was also the person who made me discover lounge music. He then supplied me with all the compilations, like the Hôtel Costes series, which I used to do my first lounge music programme at Europa FM. He's responsible for the fact I am working in the radio industry again. You know, after the top 40 time on Cadena Ser and being surrounded by pop music permanently, I took a break from the radio, I just didn't feel it anymore. Only when I was introduced to lounge music by Jorge my passion for the radio came back and I thought "let's give this a go!"

Anything else you want to add or say?

I'd wish Ibizas musical evolution would go in the opposite direction as it does right now. We're looking at a very commercial season ahead in my opinion, and I am missing more underground stuff happening. Yes sure, there are a few nice things like the Ibiza123 festival with the appearance of stars like Lenny Kravitz, this is really good for the musical variety of the island. But on the electronic side of things, it's been the same big names for a while already (like a decace for some!) and even though there's an incredibly big amount of new talent around, they hardly get the chance to play in Ibiza, which is a shame really. I think even the clubbers would welcome more fresh blood, also in the big clubs. This is Ibiza after all, a place where trends are set, and in order to do so, everyone needs to open their minds a bit again!

Thanks Jose Maria!

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