THE DOITINDY RADIO HOUR was the (deranged) brainchild of MP Cavalier and Scott Tolin. Scott was one of the co-founders of DOITINDY, a social media based collective of like-minded writers, photographers, and social butterflies with a common goal of promoting Indianapolis as a city with more to do than watch basketball and go to the state fair. DOITINDY produced weekly "Top Five" videos, highlighting the events in the city that went beyond the mainstream, focusing on the eclectic and the fringe. Immediately successful, DOITINDY secured a place in the Indianapolis media when it was invited to do a weekly segment on FOX59. "The DOITINDY Weekend Three" put Scott, along with his co-founder Ben Risinger and a rotating cast of DOITINDY editors on display every Saturday morning on live television. As DOITINDY grew, Scott and Ben decided it was time to expand it's scope. They brought on editors that specialized in all of the things the city was coming to love - food, beer, and music.

MP Cavalier was writing about music for various websites, and a long article about a local Indy band caught the eye of DOITINDY. MP was invited to be music editor, with a standing assignment to "write about whatever you want." With some new doors opened locally, MP started covering local shows by independent touring artists like Erin McKeown and MODOC, as well as larger shows by national touring acts. Eventually, MP started attending more shows by local bands, soaking up the music scene as it was beginning to gain some momentum. MP started to produce "Top Five" videos of his own for DOITINDY, highlighting local shows and giving the bands and venues a little promotional push to a new audience.

A frame from MP and Tolin's final Top Five Video.
They broadcast the first Radio Hour the same week. 
With Ben re-locating to Michigan, Scott found himself at the helm of DOITINDY. Sensing it was time to change direction, he and MP hit upon the idea of a DOITINDY radio show. Initially, the concept was to take the idea of the DOITINDY "Top Five" and expand it to a one hour audio stream. As they fleshed out the idea, they started talking about the local music scene. MP was feeling constricted by the weekly blog model, and only being able to write about a band or two at a time. With a radio show, MP and Scott knew they could expose more people to a lot more music.

The initial series of the DOITINDY RADIO HOUR streamed on WOOT-FM and ran for 12 episodes. MP and Scott put together playlists of local music, promoted local shows, and re-discovered their love for radio. For the final two shows of the first series, the show broadcast from a new live music venue called Grove Haus in the newly developing Fountain Square neighborhood. And for the first time, MP and Scott incorporated live performances from local bands into the program. For the show, it was a game changer.

After a break for the Christmas holiday, MP and Scott partnered with their old DOITINDY pal Rob Dillon and developed Radio Free Indy. RFI.FM was conceived as a 24/7 streaming radio station serving the local music scene. The Radio Hour was shifted from Wednesdays to Mondays (where it remains to this day), with MP and Scott taking advantage of a traditional "off-night" for the music scene to draw listeners in. The second series of the Radio Hour began on January 20, 2014, and the first full season completed in October. 

As Scott and MP became more comfortable in their hosting roles, they started tweaking the format of the show. The first major change was to expand the live performance segments. The bands were now given longer set times, up to 25 minutes as opposed to just 3 or 4 songs. The show was also now permanently based at Grove Haus, and MP and Scott took full advantage of the venue's 16 channel mixer and PA system. No longer limited by their small desktop mixer, now they could book full electric bands. And as more bands racked up live sets on the broadcast, requests to appear on the show started to accumulate to the point where it was booked months in advance. The Radio Hour expanded it's internal family as well, with local music promoter Ben Cannon, producer Ryan Gibbons, and musician Rachel Mare Jones sitting in as regular guest hosts. MP and Scott partnered with Indy's original local music broadcaster Indy In-Tune for joint remote broadcasts from the annual 'Kammy's Kause' benefit shows. The show was gaining its own momentum as the local music scene continued its growth.

With that momentum came accolades. MP and Scott were twice honored with coveted "Barfly" cartoons in Indy's alternative press stalwart NUVO. Bands were offering the show exclusive first-plays of soon to be released singles. It was getting a lot easier to program each show, as more and more artists were making contact with Radio Free Indy to submit music or request a live segment on the Grove Haus stage. Each October, to celebrate the end of the broadcast year, Grove Haus hosted an anniversary concert for the show, with local bands on the bill and MP and Scott "getting the night off" to enjoy a show with their friends and soak up some glory. 


The poster for the 1st Anniversary concert. As it happened, a similar image was being used for another show later in the year and we didn't use this poster. We printed 10 and had them signed by the bands and given away to our Radio Hour family. 

The 2nd Anniversary show poster (left) designed by Arin Anderson from Anderson Creative. This was the first appearance of "Mr Waffles", which became our trademark image. To the right is the 3rd Anniversary poster, designed by Amanda Keller and Jared Ades and featuring a stylized Mr. Waffles perched atop our beloved Grove Haus.

As the show entered it's fourth year in October 2016, MP and Scott started to feel some changes were needed. The show had run for 140 episodes, and they were starting to feel that the format was becoming too predictable. Additionally, the continued pressure of doing a live radio show was starting to take its toll. During the annual year-end break, the Radio Free indy team decided to cease operations of RFI.FM. This put the Radio Hour, as well as the other shows on the station, in a position of having content with no place to air. For the Radio Hour, it meant that the live component of the broadcast was no longer an issue and MP and Scott could continue doing the show in a podcast format. 

Just after Christmas 2016, MP and Scott announced that the Radio Hour will record eight shows in January and February, then take a long needed two month break. The plan is to come back in the late spring with a newly formatted program that adds live video and takes the show to other venues on occasion. One thing that won't change is the show's commitment to the local music scene. As long as the bands keep making music, the Radio Hour will keep playing it. 

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