Sunday, 18 March 2012

Snow Hill

'Neko harbour' by Rita Willaert
under a CC license
In response to the words "work environment" many people will bring to their minds images of urban crowded office spaces, sounds of ringing telephones and working printers and - good or bad - feelings such as those often deriving from the interaction with colleagues. But as most people imagine - and as few people really know - it's not always like that.

Take rail-crossing guards and - several decades ago - lighthouse keepers for instance. Both those jobs have the aura of solitude. Electricity and technology, in general, have made many such jobs obsolete, giving the possibility for things to be done or checked remotely on a regular basis.

Having that in mind, imagine my surprise, the other day, when I came across "A" Net Station, an internet radio station based on Snow Hill island, Antarctica. Yes, Antarctica.

My 5'-minute Google search didn't reveal too much on the island, I have to admit. It was easy to find its position on the globe (I understand that the land there is claimed by Great Britain, Argentina and Chile; of course, as all land there, it is administered under the Antarctic Treaty System). Still though, there is a YouTube video showing a group of tourists visiting a refuge hut built on the island in 1902 by a Swedish expedition:


To be honest, I can't verify that there is actually somebody streaming music from that point of the world on a daily basis. But even if that's just a hobby of somebody from the research bases of the continent (not necessarily on the island 24/7), it still feels exciting to listen to music coming from that far away, from a place where normally the only sounds heard should be the wind, the sea and, possibly, the sounds of penguins...

According to their "A"Net Station's website, the web-radio station is not a new story. And, by the way, they have made an interesting selection of relaxing music from independent artists. If you are on the move but have an Android device or an Ipad you could try the TuneIn app - it allows you to search for web radio stations geographically; you'll find "A" Net Station under "Antarctica" - of course.


Well done, people there!  You've made something cool!


6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for that short article. Same curiosity, same feelings brings me here to your page. What I like most about that station, they dont update everyday, they have a loop ; there is no surprise, you may find your usual quite playlist for a period of time..When they renew it, the sensation of an expedition grow up. Long live 'A' Net station...

The Suitcase Man said...

@Anonymous: Thanks for sharing that! Yes, there is something profoundly "manual" behind each loop change. Definitely not how modern radio works but, given the conditions there, quite admirable!

sean thornley said...

I have been listening to this station for sometime now, and even though the same songs loop, they never grow old. My favourite is 'somewhere in your heart' by the late and great Isaac Guillory. What a fantastic and original station. Every time I listen to this station, it brings a sense of mystery, wonder and inspires the imagination to take a trip to a far away desolate land where there is nothing but this music. Truly impressive!!

Eric Bakker ND said...

I just discovered this radio station and enjoy the selection of folk music, certainly a nicer sound than most of that commercial garbage on air. Neat blog BTW, Eric Bakker ND

Eric Bakker ND said...

Cool music, a very nice selection of relaxing folk music. A welcome change from that commercial noise on offer with the mainstream online radio stations. Well done. Eric Bakker ND

Marla said...

Found this station this evening. It's great. Love the music. So glad it's available.