Counterpoint logo

S t a t i o n   h i s t o r y 

It was in Amsterdam in the 1980's. At the end of 1985 the idea arose to start a 'professional' radio station called CounterpointFM. Several people who worked at the pirate radio station Satellite Empire Disco Action, decided to set up a new, obviously also illegal, radio station. The idea was to play a so-called HIT radio format during the day and a DANCE/R&B format in the evenings and during the weekends.

After much preparation, the broadcasts of this, for its time, unique radio station finally started on 31 October 1986. The station played 75% R&B and Dance, as well as some alternative music and of course some hits of the days. The start of CounterpointFM coincided with the opening of the Escape discotheque.

Together with record store Rhythm Import, who provided us with the latest music and discotheque Escape, where we organized dance sessions, CounterpointFM formed an important music triangle in Amsterdam.

For nine months we operated 24 hours a day, seven days a week from the Kanaalstraat in Amsterdam. A thirty-meter-high mast with two dipole antennas on a 15-meter-high building ensured that the station's signal could be received in almost the entire western part of the Netherlands.

Of course all this was done without any permits and being an illegal transmitter it was a game of 'cat and mouse' with the authoroties. The studio was located opposite the transmitter and antennas, on the other side of the street. A small radio connection ensured that the signal was received by the transmitter, but not at street-level where the radio investigation services roamed, trying to find the studio.

After nine months of broadcasting, various government agencies put an end to the illegal radio adventures in Amsterdam. Almost every employee of fellow radio stations was arrested on the night of November 23, but the studio of CounterpointFM was never discovered. Since we were the only illegal channel remaining, the pressure got the best of us and we decided to stop temporarily, because we were really scared.

Transmission continued on and off and in the end it was finally decided that we could not continue this way. Every time the authoroties removed us from the air, they also took transmitters, antennas and sometimes other broadcasting equipment. As they also started targeting our advertisers, we couldn't generate enough income to continue replacing the equipment and in 1996 we decided to put an end to it.

But this did not mean the end. In 1997, some of the station's former dj's started an online version of CounterpointFM. This became very popular, but after 15 years, in 2012, we decided it had been enough and it was time to persue other opportunities. But in 2024 it was decided that we would make a brand new start with will read the sequel in the near future. Can you still wait???