WE DID IT!!! Many thanks to all of the WESU listeners and staff who made 2014 a wonderful year and for helping us pull off our most successful fundraising effort, EVER! Warm wishes for a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2015!! Stay tuned!!! www.wesufm.org
When sophomore Arch Doty moved into room 23 of Clark Hall in September, 1939, he brought with him a radio transmitter he had built at home the previous summer. Using a turntable, 78 rpm records, a microphone, the transmitter, and an antenna wire hanging out of Arch’s window, student-run radio at Wesleyan hit the airwaves.
It was a modest start. The entire audience that tuned into the evening AM-band broadcasts was limited to Clark residents—the weak signal reached no farther than several hundred feet beyond the antenna. But the broadcasts proved to be very popular, and within weeks, students in other residences wanted to be able to tune in.
Seventy-five years later, WESU-FM reaches a potential audience of over one million listeners, and can be heard as far as Springfield, Massachusetts; Long Island, New York; Waterbury; and Norwich.
“WESU: Celebrating 75 Years of Community Radio” takes an anecdotal look at one of the oldest college radio stations in the United States. Throughout WESU’s history, there have been two constants: first, without interruption, Wesleyan students have operated the station; and second, broadcasts have been focused on new, under-represented, or non-commercial programming aimed at students and the larger community.
Most of the items in the exhibition are from the collections of Special Collections & Archives, Olin Library. University Archivist Leith Johnson is curator of the show, with research assistance provided by Ian McCarthy. Special thanks to WESU General Manager Ben Michael for advice and loans of items from WESU’s collection.
Don’t miss the WESU Fall Record Fair (and sale) on Sunday October, 26 from 11am-4pm. The event features dozens of vendors, from throughout the North-East, selling music in all formats. Plus, there’s other cool merchandise and WESU DJs spinning vinyl all day long. So, come on down and do some crate digging! You might find that album you’ve been searching for!
The WESU Fall Record Fair is free and open to the public and happens in Beckham Hall in the Fayerweather building at 55 Wyllys Ave on the Wesleyan Campus (06459).
To make a record donation, contact our events coordinator at email@example.com.
The fall program season at WESU is now in full effect! click here for the complete schedule. As we wrap up our 75th anniversary calendar year, our fall season features programming from over 150 student and community volunteers, who work together to ensure WESU broadcasts 24 hrs per day.
Nestled alongside some of our longstanding programs, like the Moondog Matinee (Sat AM Oldies), The Gospel Express (Sunday AM Gospel), The Warehouse (Weds PM Dance music), and Avantia Tutta (Sat PM Italian, are shows by new student and community volunteer DJs. Each weekday, WESU splits it’s program between public affairs (by day) and free form music programming (at night and on the weekends). Each day WESU offers NPR, Pacifica, and a host of local and independent productions. Locally produced public affairs programs run the gamut from highly produced shows with full time paid production staff to more bare bones “public access” style broadcasts. Highlights of locally produced public affairs programs include Anarchy on Air – a weekly look at activism locally and globally, Mind Matters with Dr Helen Evrard – which explores mental illness, Reasonably Catholic with Maria Johnson – exploring the progressive side of Catholicism, and The Bauer Hour – offering a local perspective on global issues. Another locally produced public affairs show you can hear on Wednesays at 4:30 is Conversations on Health Care which features leading national and international guests at the helm of healthcare reform.
WESU’s Free Form music programming features everything from 3 varieties of gospel music, to vintage Rock and Roll, Doo Wop, & RnB to Electronic dance music, hip hop, world music, local musicians, and the indie pop and rock you’d expect to hear at a college radio station.
This season WESU continues to offer two 75th anniversary themed programs including, “75 years of…” on Wednesday nights at at Midnight and “Welcome back” on Friday afternoons at 1:00 pm. 75 years of is a weekly program with monthly themes exploring audio content that would otherwise not be heard on air, were it not for noncommercial stations like WESU. This month’s theme is underground dance music and is curated by DJ Lokash. Welcome back features conversations with folks who have passed through the WESU studios over the years reflecting on their experience at WESU and how it might have helped them along the way.
Stay tuned for special 75th anniversary events in addition to our regular happenings like our Fall Record Fair on October 26th!
Afternoon workshops and evening performances by international Muslim women in hip hop, including the U.S. debut of Montreal-based Algerian singer-songwriter and rapper Meryem Saci as a solo artist, the New England debut of Washington, D.C.-based and Grammy Award-nominated singer-songwriter, poet, and emcee Maimouna Youssef a.k.a. Mumu Fresh as a solo artist, and London’s spoken-word duo Poetic Pilgrimage.
This event is part of Muslim Women’s Voices at Wesleyan.
11am to 5pm workshops in World Music Hall: $12 per workshop, or $30 for all three workshops.Workshops are free for Wesleyan students. Lunch provided for participants.
9pm concert in Fayerweather Beckham Hall: $18 general public; $15 senior citizens, Wesleyan faculty/staff/alumni, non-Wesleyan students; $6 Wesleyan students
A Passport for four of the ticketed Muslim Women’s Voices at Wesleyan events is only $50—a 38% savings off the general public ticket prices. Please click here for more details. Offer ends Saturday, September 20, 2014.
This week’s Mind Matters guest is Stewart Pearce, author of “The Alchemy of Voice,” who shares his experience and wisdom using breath, voice, and vibrational energies as healing modalities. Learn more about him here: http://www.thealchemyofvoice.com/ Tune in at 6 p.m tonight!
WESU is back for its fall season and taking Michael Roth with it!
Wesleyan’s president talked to Maria Johnson in a series of interviews to be posted on her show “Reasonably Catholic: Keeping the Faith.”
The FIRST interview, to air on TUESDAY, SEPT. 16, will explore the atheism and continuing relevance of Sigmund Freud, who died 75 years ago this month. In 1998, President Roth curated a Library of Congress exhibit entitled “Freud: Conflict and Culture” and edited an accompanying book of essays by noted Freud experts. President Roth also teaches a Wesleyan film course which makes use of Freud’s theories.
In the SECOND interview, to air TUESDAY, SEPT. 30, we explore President Roth’s latest book, Beyond the University: Why Liberal Education Matters, specifically where it touches on the interior life.
Can’t listen live? All episodes of RC:KF are archived for two weeks at www.wesufm.org and forever at www.reasonablycatholic.com.
Stay posted for more exciting things to come!
Public Relations Director
Dear friends, family, listeners, and supporters of WESU,
Hello and happy spring! In the coming weeks, as I wrap up my elected term as the student president of WESU, I will pass the baton to our next eager volunteer and I will be graduating (yikes) from Wesleyan. While I’m more than a little sad to leave the station, I can gladly say that my last year was a successful and exciting one as we kicked off our 75th anniversary. WESU hosted two concerts this spring that were free and open to public, and our Annual Spring Record Fair was our most successful to date. Plus, we have been working hard to lay the ground work for an exciting year of celebrations!
Speaking of records, in the coming weeks, we are poised to receive one of the coolest birthday presents ever! A family who loves WESU very much is about to bestow their beautiful collection of over 13,000 records to WESU. For those who’ve never seen it, our amazing record library is a rare treasure and in some ways, represents the heart and soul of WESU. This incredibly generous gift will enable us to replace many of the beat-up albums and fill in gaps in our collection.
We have been celebrating our landmark birthday, on air, since January with our oral history radio show “Welcome Back” as well as “75 Years Of…,” a program highlighting radio content that wouldn’t likely be heard without stations like WESU. And if you haven’t yet read it, check out the Wesleyan magazine Historical Row column, “WESLEYAN’S UNDERGROUND RADIO STATION,” chronicling the earliest days of radio at WESU. You can a find links to that article and special 75th anniversary programming and events on our website.
We need your support to keep our unique free form music and public affairs programming on the airwaves. This spring’s pledge drive is especially exciting because it is the first of our 75th anniversary year. As such, we are asking you to consider giving us an extra-special birthday present to help raise additional capital funds to install a backup power system and update our studio equipment. If we raise enough funds by the end of 2014, we hope to also be able to kick off a film documentary project about the history of WESU.
Your support for WESU will honor a landmark anniversary and legacy of one of the first student owned and operated college radio stations. You can donate by e-check, debit, or credit card online at www.wesufm.org or complete the enclosed pledge form!
I’ve had an amazing time in my years at the station and it would mean a lot if you offered your support so that student and community volunteer DJs like me can continue to broadcast alternative programming for years to come.
WESU Board of Directors
(and host of This Southbound Train)