Doc-In-Progress Charts The Story Of South African Anti-Apartheid Pirate Radio Station Capital 604
Photo Credit: S & A

Doc-In-Progress Charts The Story Of South African Anti-Apartheid Pirate Radio Station Capital 604

nullNot only do our contributors just write articles for us, but

some of them also make films as well; and the latest case in point is contributor

Michael Jones, who has written for us before in the past.

Jones is also a veteran cameraman and filmmakers with

his own production company QStorm Media Group, based in New Jersey, and

he is currently hard at work on a new documentary

project he’s making about the South African pirate radio station, Capital


Back during the apartheid era, in South Africa, the country’s

government banned television, and censored music and news broadcasts in an

effort to control the media. On top of that, it also did not allow the creation

of private radio stations and only permitted its state-owned stations to


However, in 1979, thanks to a loophole in the Homeland system, people

began to take advantage to help defeat brutal apartheid policy. In the government’s attempt to segregate its

society, it actually created autonomous, yet resource-less Homeland areas, which

were, in effect, individual countries separate from South Africa.

As a result, a team of progressive broadcasters got together and

erected a radio transmitter, powerful enough to broadcast into South Africa, through an AM channel.

The transmitter powered a new station called Capital Radio

604, and it has been credited for changing South African radio forever.  The station’s personnel was multiracial, with blacks

and whites working together, which was then literally unheard of and banned by

the government. But with the freedom that they had, they played music that had

been censored by the South African

government, and their news broadcasts presented the real story of what was

actually going in South Africa.

Not surprisingly, the government tried, on many occasions, to

sabotage Capital Radio 604 by knocking them off the air, usually right before a

controversial news broadcast was to occur. But the station kept broadcasting despite all attempts.

Now Jones, along with his partner Craig Johnston, are hard at work on their documentary about Capital 604, which, according to Jones has “the potential to

shed light on a band of unsung heroes who aided in the dismantling of one of

the most brutal regimes of the 20th century. We believe the material we possess

has the makings of a compelling story and we believe it’s a story that should

be told."

Below is an extended trailer for the documentary.

Shadow and Act is a website dedicated to cinema, television and web content of Africa and its global Diaspora. With daily news, interviews, in-depth investigations into the audiovisual industry, and more, Shadow and Act promotes content created by and about people of African descent throughout the world.

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