Just 10 years ago WESU was in disrepair. The institutional memory was shot and the studios, music libraries, and business records were in shambles. The station’s license was nearly lost. Fortunately a dedicated group of student and community volunteers worked hard with the Wesleyan University administration to develop a plan to get the station back on its feet.
Currently, WESU operates 24 hrs per day, 7 days per week, and is supported by a volunteer staff of over 150 student and community volunteers, 2 part-time paid staffers, and one full-time General Manager. WESU is supported by a partnership between Wesleyan University and listeners, organizations, and businesses throughout the CT River Valley. As evidence of WESU’s transformation over the last decade, for the first time, WESU was crowned “The Best College Radio Station” in the 2013 Hartford Advocate’s Annual Readers’ Poll!
WESU receives no federal funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting or any other grant or foundation sources. WESU depends on listener support to cover roughly one third of their lean $120,000 annual budget. When other public radio stations around the country, including right here in CT, have budgets so huge they can afford to pay their General Managers more than twice WESU’s entire annual budget, WESU continues to grow and develop as a community service. With Public affairs programming from NPR, Pacifica, local and independent sources in addition to a plethora of free-form music and community programming, WESU offers more perspectives than any other radio station in the region.
In addition to bringing listeners hard to access news, music, public affairs, art, and perspectives from across the world, WESU enables our local communities to inform, share, organize, educate, celebrate life, and connect with the world around them. Thanks to the growth in internet broadcasting, WESU now also serves thousands of listeners from around the globe each month. WESU has come a long way since a young student named Arch Doty built that first one-watt radio station in his Wesleyan University Clark Hall dorm room back in 1939.
As an innovative listener-supported community radio station, WESU is constantly exploring new ground. This spring, WESU is taking another risk by exploring a kinder, gentler approach to fundraising in an effort to avoid disrupting the airwaves with another traditional on-air public radio pledge drive.
You can help prevent an over-the-top pledge drive from taking over the WESU airwaves by donating online at www.wesufm.org or by sending a check to WESU Radio, 45 Broad St, 2nd fl, Middletown, CT 06457 . WESU is also asking supporters to help spread the word throughout their communities and social networks that reaching new donors is critical to sustaining WESU. Past donors will be receiving letters of appeal in the mail as well.
Community support during this drive specifically supports locally produced free-form radio created by student and community volunteers. WESU offers a truly unique mix of public affairs and cultural programming that reflects the diversity of the communities we serve. With your support, WESU can further distinguish itself from the radio pack and avoid resorting to interrupting regular programming in order to continue doing what it does best!
“They have a program for everyone. They’re very diversified, I love it!”
“Still free form after all these years and some of the best music and alternative community affairs programs available.”
“WESU is a great resource for Connecticut as it plays unique music and hosts thoughtful talk shows. Homegrown! Rob DeRosa!”
DJ Quandry, aka Eriq Robinson, is a sophomore at Wesleyan University. We’ve decided to profile him somewhat arbitrarily, but also because he’s a rad dude. This is our first of what we hope will be a monthly feature, “On the Spot,” where we spring on unsuspecting WESU DJs and interview them.
I caught up with DJ Quandry at our a cappella rehearsal.
WESU: Surprise! You’ve just been put ON THE SPOT. So, what’s your show called?
DJ Quandry: Okay. My show’s called “Shelf Life.”
W: What’s the format?
Q: It’s an electronic music show. I find random albums off the shelf and play ‘em. [See his Spinitron playlist for this month here.]
W: Groovy. When is your show?
Q: Every second and fourth Wednesday, 11pm – 12:30am.
W: When did you join WESU?
Q: I joined freshman year – first semester I went through training, second semester I had my first show: “Flight 881 with Captain Q.” It was a world music show, where I went to a different country every week. You know: “Flight 881. Buckle up!”
Then I moved to “Shelf Life,” and that’s probably going to be the format I stick with for the rest of my time at WESU.
W: What music have you recently come across doing “Shelf Life?”
Q: Peace Orchestra, which is pretty trippy. One of my friends told me about Four Tet – and KH, who is also Four Tet – and a track called something like “Play that song that you always play… that I like…” – or something – it’s really cool.
W: Do you get calls on your show?
Q: This one time, I was playing Purity Ring, and this dude called in, and he just kept going on and on about how he loves the show, and how he loves WESU – he wouldn’t let me get a word in edgewise – and he was so into Purity Ring, and he said, “That was so deep, and I was so into it, and I’m just at the gas station getting some s***, and that song was so deep, and I love you guys.” And I said “thanks,” and then he said, “Alright, I gotta go.” I was like, “Whoa.” Continue reading
Show is going to be in the WestCo Cafe because of the rain. Watch out for info about live streaming. 227. Concreatures.
Free for everyone!
Boldy James is a wildly inventive, cool-headed MC from Detroit. He’s due to release a new project with prolific producer The Alchemist later this year. Stereogum called his latest mixtape, Consignment: Favor for a Favor the Redi-Rock Mixtape “almost shockingly huge in its scope…compulsively listenable.” He is the kind of talent that should be spoken of in hushed tones by anyone who cares about hip-hop as an artform.
Gifted Higgz is an up-and-coming MC from here in Middletown, CT.
Kill-F is a mystery
WHERE: WestCo Courtyard (Rain location: WestCo Cafe),
WHEN: 9:00 PM SHARP
THANK YOU to The Wesleyan Concert Committee, and the Music & Public Life series for making this series possible!
Today’s record fair was a great success! Photos and video courtesy of Dave Bauer.
Our record fair is this Sunday and should be oodles and oodles of fun here’s all the info…
Who? Vendors of music in all formats and other mysterious trinkets from all around our area. WESU DJs spinning all-vinyl sets. YOU!!!
What? Vinyl, cassette, dvd, cd, 8track??? You name it, and someone at our record fair will have it. Find that Zappa bootleg you’ve been looking for forever. Pick up your 15 thousandth copy of Bridge Over Troubled Water. All of your musical dreams are here!
Where? Beckham Hall, Fayerweather, Wesleyan University, 55 Wyllys ave. Middletown, Connecticut, United States, North America, Planet Earth, The Solar System, Milky Way Galaxy, Known Universe, Reality
When? This SUNDAY April 7th, 2013 from 11am-4pm
Why? Because you can’t scratch an MP3.
If you really badly still want a table email email@example.com and he might be able to squeeze you in.
Thanks to everyone who came to see Zammuto, Snowblink, and the Japanese! Click the photo above to see more photos from our friends at Truancy Park. Our apologies to anyone frustrated by Wesleyan students tendency to chat a bit much. Keep an eye out for info about our next concert with Boldy James next Friday April 12th.
Come on down to Eclectic Haus at 200 High St., Middletown CT to catch the show. Or tune in via the livestream!
Free for everyone! If you do not have a Wes ID, please RSVP here.
Zammuto is the new solo project from Nick Zammuto, a former member
of The Books—one of the most acclaimed and innovative groups of the
past decade. In Zammuto’s progressive new endeavor, “dexterous
musicianship and catchy pop writing are upgraded to hyper-reality,”
(Pitchfork) as he mixes digital rhythms with complex orchestration for
an emotionally intese music experience that blurs the line between man
and machine. 12 am
Snowblink is a Toronto based duo dubbed by the CBC
as “one of the most compelling new voices on the Canadian scene” for
their delicate, ethereal sound. 11 pm
The Japanese make paw-stomping space music. 10 pm
WHERE: Eclectic Haus, Wesleyan University, 200 High St. Middletown, CT
THANK YOU to the Wesleyan Student Assembly Concert Committee, the Student Program Fund, and the Music & Public Life series for making this series possible!