Turning Pirate Radio


Client: Turning Pirate

This is an old project but an interesting one. It was a front end user interface design project which was immensely collaborative. 

I was heavily involved with the development of the overall concept with the people behind Turning Pirate, web developers, multiple Irish radio presenters, well known musicians and DJs in the Irish music Industry and some general music geeks.

For the interface design I worked in very close contact with the developers. I was designing the front end interface and how it should look and interact with the user while they were taking the design and coding it. This was a huge amount of back and forth and with added input from the Turning Pirate team, so aside from design, it required a lot of patience and teamwork but was done successfully..

In 2013 internet radio had a brief burst of popularity but it was short lived because podcasts and Spotify soon came into play and blew it out of the water - browser based or web app listening plummeted in popularity very quickly. However, many of the people involved went on to be very successful podcasters and radio presenters.

I’ve put together some simple animated GIFs below. The visuals are a little dated at this stage (it’s amazing how quickly resolution grows!) and the website itself no longer exists. Check out the GIFs below and there’s some further info on the project below them if you’re interested.


A little more info:

The project was very interesting for many reasons, but one was that unique code was written to pull data automatically from multiple sources online. For example as a playlist was being played by a presenter on the embedded player, the currently playing artist’s social media links and widgets would be pulled live from Twitter, Instagram etc. Press shots and live photos would be pulled from the website’s own archive, and biographies and information for the current artist would be pulled from Discogs, an online vinyl sales platform which also acts as a kind of Wikipedia for music, and upcoming gigs and ticket sales info pulled from various event platforms. This would all be randomised in layout and would change live from song to song.

The site also had dedicated profiles with all of the above for every artist, musician, DJ, band, presenter and photographer. The aim of the project was of course to provide entertainment to the end user but it was also to give a promotional platform to all of the above list of creatives.

Revenue was to come from only relevant advertising that wouldn’t disrupt the user - venues, artists themselves, ticket sales platforms, labels etc.