Do you remember the first time you heard Chopin? Or maybe for you it was the Dave Brubeck Quartet. Whatever it is, there are songs that touch the heart and move the soul.

I have discovered numerous artists through internet radio, specifically the Pandora service, and have since purchased their music. Without the availability of such services, musicians without the necessary resources to pay for marketing and advertising will most likely go unnoticed by me and the general public. Not to mention the impact it will have on the quality of life that is brought by the discovery of a new favorite artist, or that perfect song to play on the way home from work or while with that certain someone. Without internet radio and sites like Pandora, all American audiences may never have the opportunity to discover their own Dave Brubecks and enhance their lives through music.

As a fan of Internet radio, I was alarmed to learn that the Copyright Royalty Board has decided to raise music royalty rates by 300 to 1200 percent. For most webcasters the new royalties exceed their revenue and they simply will go bankrupt and stop webcasting.

The silencing of Internet radio would be a blow to listeners like me who enjoy the wide variety of choices only available via Internet radio. This will kill the great diversity of music that I hear over the Internet and all the independent artists who have a difficult time breaking through on other forms of radio.

I respectfully request that Congress look into this matter and take action to prevent it. Please understand that time is of the essence since the new royalty rates are retroactive to January 1, 2006 so they will cause immediate bankruptcies if they become effective for even one day. Please don’t let the music die.