Elrik Merlin Steps Forward to Found Virtual Community Radio

Richard Elen (bet­ter known in Sec­ond Life by his DJ name, “Elrik Mer­lin”, or “Rik” for short) has a tool­box which run­neth over with audio skills, music, broad­cast­ing, and all the impor­tant behind-the-scenes details that go along with those activ­i­ties.  From work­ing as a tour­ing and stu­dio sound engi­neer in the 1970s; through dozens of pro­duc­ing and engi­neer­ing gigs; mag­a­zine edit­ing and mar­ket­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tions; to cur­rent work as a spe­cial­ist trans­fer­ring vin­tage tapes and discs to dig­i­tal for­mat for major pro­duc­tion music libraries, “wealth” does not begin to cov­er the expe­ri­ence he brings to his var­i­ous vir­tu­al world endeavors.

Sec­ond Life res­i­dents may best know him stand­ing beside Saf­fia Wid­der­shins in the award-win­ning web TV show Design­ing Worlds, where for well over a decade he’s been co-host and has worked cru­cial­ly behind the scenes on the tech­ni­cal pro­duc­tion of each episode. Until recent­ly, he played a sim­i­lar role with Gabrielle Riel and the suite of streams for­mer­ly known as Radio Riel, work­ing as part of the team of on-air pre­sen­ters, along­side pro­vid­ing behind-the-scenes tech­ni­cal sup­port. With the found­ing of Vir­tu­al Com­mu­ni­ty Radio he steps in front, tak­ing the lead­ing role informed by his decades of pro­fes­sion­al experience.

Some peo­ple come to Sec­ond Life, or oth­er vir­tu­al worlds, for a chance to explore aspects of life that are not pos­si­ble  for them in the world of sol­id mat­ter. For Elen, vir­tu­al envi­ron­ments pro­vide an oppor­tu­ni­ty to coa­lesce dif­fer­ent aspects of his exten­sive expe­ri­ence into one new media-dri­ven path. “This is some­thing I have always want­ed to do,” he notes, “take the things I have learned and observed over the years and chan­nel them into some­thing that reflects my vision of what vir­tu­al media can be, and how they can sup­port and con­nect com­mu­ni­ties and people.”

"Elrik Merlin has a toolbox which runneth over with audio skills, music, broadcasting, and all the important behind-the-scenes         details that go along with those activities."

“Mr Mer­lin” will be on hand this Sat­ur­day, Feb­ru­ary 6th, from 2–3:30pm pacific/slt to wel­come guests and inter­est­ed res­i­dents to the station’s Inau­gur­al Ball at their head­quar­ters on Chest­nut Hills. (https://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Chestnut%20Hills/121/101/3802)

He can also be heard co-host­ing a short fea­ture series on the sta­tion: Where’ve You Been? Along with Cale­do­nia Sky­tow­er, they will chat about places they’ve vis­it­ed and ongo­ing events that res­i­dents might want to vis­it them­selves. “This for­mat has greater agili­ty than a TV show, but we cov­er things in less depth – just high­light­ing them,” he shares.  Where’ve You Been? airs week­ly on Wednes­days and Sat­ur­days at Noon and 4pm slt/pacific begin­ning Feb­ru­ary 3rd.

Feb­ru­ary 13th at 2pm slt/pacific he will present the first of what will be a reg­u­lar music pro­gram, The Grove, which will explore New Age music. As any­one who has had the plea­sure of being at one of DJ Elrik Merlin’s dance shows and watched him con­nect with oth­er music lovers in atten­dance, he loves music and his knowl­edge of both artists and com­po­si­tion is vast. He brings all that enthu­si­asm to this new reg­u­lar show. Watch this web­site for more on The Grove.

Vir­tu­al worlds pro­vide us all with a unique oppor­tu­ni­ty to let our imag­i­na­tions cre­ate a world, and inhab­it it. Skills are gained, peo­ple con­nect­ed with, explo­ration is achieved and our lives – mate­r­i­al and vir­tu­al – are enriched.  With the found­ing of Vir­tu­al Com­mu­ni­ty Radio, Mr Mer­lin brings love and expe­ri­ence togeth­er and shares this brand new chap­ter with Sec­ond Life res­i­dents and inter­est­ed lis­ten­ers on the Internet.

By Cale­do­nia Skytower

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