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Records on the ceiling at college radio station Radio 1190. Photo: J. Waits

College Radio Watch: College Radio Inspires Punk-Style Community Radio and Public Radio Upstarts

Although the new school year is rapidly approaching for many of us, things are generally quiet on the college radio front. I’m scurrying to write up all of my recent college radio station visits and posted my recap of my trip to University of Colorado, Boulder’s college radio station Radio 1190 on Monday.

During some recent station visits I’ve been struck by the role of former college radio DJs in new community radio stations. An article this week about Brooklyn streaming radio station KPISS references that phenomenon, stating, “While there’s definitely a certain KPISS vibe, the hosts are a diverse bunch. ‘We have DJs, comedians, artists, citizen journalists, and also just frustrated executives who miss their college radio days,’ [KPISS founder] Sheri [Barclay] explained. ”

Although KPISS is a DIY operation, running from a shipping container in a strip called Punk Alley; there are also college radio-style endeavors coming out of more mainstream organizations, including public radio stations.

North Carolina Public Radio just launched WUNC Music in order to have a more DJ-driven, music-centric stream (and HD2 channel) for its listeners. In a Q&A posted by WUNC, Program Director Eric Brower writes about the station’s format, saying, “It’s what’s know as an Adult Album Alternative, or AAA, format which evolved from 70s freeform radio. You remember that right? DJs programming their own music Johnny Fever style. Well if you take that basic idea, to play music you really love, combine it with the DIY spirit from the heyday of college radio when REM, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Smiths, The Replacements and Husker Du ruled the airwaves, then you’ll have a triple A radio. Add a healthy dose of bands and songwriters from North Carolina and you’ll have WUNC Music.”

College Radio News

Broadcaster Tom King Returns to College Radio Roots at WWSP (WSAU)

Radio Mirchi Launches “Mirchi Degree” to Celebrate “Being Unconventional” (Times of India)

Stint at College Radio Station Prompts Career Change (Otago Daily Times)

Previewing CBI’s Student Media conference in Philadelphia (Radio World)

WSUM’s 9th Snake on the Lake Festival Returns on September 9 (Badger Herald)

CBI Sets Dates, Location for 2017 NSEMC (Radio Magazine)


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