Tag Archive for WESU

WESU Radio Celebrates 75th Anniversary Nov. 2

The exhibit “WESU: Celebrating 75 Years of Community Radio,” is on display in Olin Library and is part of WESU's 75th anniversary celebration.

The exhibit “WESU: Celebrating 75 Years of Community Radio,” is on display in Olin Library and is part of WESU’s 75th anniversary celebration.

WESU Radio will host an event to commemorate the non-commercial radio station’s 75th anniversary on Nov. 2. Middletown Mayor Daniel Drew, among other dignitaries, will be in attendance to honor the station’s 75-year legacy of community service and acknowledge the radio station’s staff of more than 150 student and community volunteers.

The event begins at 5:30 p.m. in Olin Library and is open to the public. There, attendees can view an exhibition titled “WESU: Celebrating 75 Years of Community Radio,” which offers an anecdotal look at one of the oldest college radio stations in the United States using photographs, documents, news clippings and artifacts. Wesleyan University Archivist Leith Johnson curated the show.

On Nov. 3, WESU will be presented with a proclamation from the City of Middletown.

Established in 1939 and currently celebrating its’ 75th anniversary, WESU is one of the oldest non-commercial radio stations in the United States. By day, Monday through Friday, WESU offers a diverse mix of news and public affairs from NPR, Pacifica, and independent and local media sources. Week nights and weekends WESU student and community volunteer broadcasters provide a freeform mix of creative music programming featuring music not readily available elsewhere on the radio.

The station currently broadcasts at the frequency of 88.1 FM from its 6,000-watt transmitter located atop Exley Science Center with a potential to reach over one million listeners throughout Connecticut and Massachusetts. WESU also streams audio, online through the website www.wesufm.org.

WESU Seeking Donations for Fall Record Fair Oct. 26

Hundreds of vinyl records and CDs will be for sale during the WESU 88.1 FM Fall Record Fair.

Hundreds of vinyl records and CDs will be for sale during the WESU 88.1 FM Fall Record Fair.

WESU 88.1 FM will host a Fall Record Fair from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 26 in Beckham Hall.

Dozens of vendors from across the Northeast will be selling vinyl records, CDs, posters, T-shirts and more. WESU DJs will sell WESU gear and records to support the station. The station also is seeking donations to be sold at the event.

Jay Siegel’s Tokens, Super Girls Group to Headline WESU’s Doo Wop Benefit Concert

On July 12,  Wesleyan's 88.1 FM WESU radio is hosting a fundraising concert in celebration of 75 years of community radio. The concert will feature several doo wop, rhythm and blues and rock ’n’ roll artists. 

On July 12,  Wesleyan’s 88.1 FM WESU radio is hosting a fundraising concert in celebration of 75 years of community radio. The concert will feature several doo wop, rhythm and blues and rock ’n’ roll artists.

Lovers of vintage doo wop, rhythm and blues and rock ’n’ roll attended a night to remember when Wesleyan’s 88.1 FM WESU Middletown presented the “WESU 75th Anniversary Doo Wop Extravaganza” on July 12.

The fundraising concert, held at the Middletown High School Performing Arts Center, was a celebration of 75 years of community radio.

Headlining the show was Jay Siegel’s Tokens, the legendary group that recorded the mega hit, “The Lion Sleeps Tonight.” They’ll be joined by The Super Girls Group, featuring original members of some of the greatest female groups of rock ’n’ roll, including:  Louise Murray of The Hearts & Jaynetts (“Lonely Nights” and “Sally Go Round The Roses”);  Lillian Walker of The Exciters (“Tell Him” and “Doo Wah Diddy”); Margaret Ross of The Cookies (“Chains” and “Don’t Say Nothing Bad About My Baby”); Beverly Warren of The Raindrops (“The Kind of Boy You Can’t Forget” and “What a Guy”); and Nanette Licari of Reparata and The Del Rons  (“Whenever A Teenager Cries” and “Tommy”).  

WESU has been broadcasting ‘oldies’ music for 35 years on Saturday mornings on the “Moondog Matinee” radio show (11 a.m. to 1 p.m.).

“While most commercial radio stations have abandoned this musical format, our ‘oldies’ programs are among our most popular shows. This is a great examples of how community radio, like WESU, serves the needs of listeners who are marginalized by main stream media,” said WESU General Manager Ben Michael.

WESU 88.1 Celebrating 75 Years of Underground Music

Wesleyan's student-owned radio station, 88.1 FM WESU was founded in 1939. It celebrates 75 years of broadcasting in 2014.

Wesleyan’s student-owned radio station, 88.1 FM WESU was founded in 1939. It celebrates 75 years of broadcasting in 2014.

For 75 years, 88.1 FM WESU has provided a platform for the enjoyment of underground music and under-represented genres generally absent from commercial airwaves.

The year 2014 will mark WESU’s 75th Anniversary, and “we’ve got a metric boatload of events and special programming to celebrate,” said DJ “Cheshire Cat” Bryan Skowera ’99. “Rather than air just our selections, we want our listeners and friends to contribute to our playlist by helping us pick the songs.”

This month, WESU is broadcasting “75 Years of Socially Conscious Music,” a program that features listener and staff suggestions that reflect both socially conscious music and WESU’s 75-year-old commitment to free form radio. Socially conscious music includes protest music, songs that call attention to injustice and songs that rail against inequality.

February will feature “75 Years of Lyrics Beyond the English Language,” and the station is seeking input on favorite recordings whose lyrics are in a language other than English, regardless of genre. Make a song suggestion here.

March’s theme will be “75 Years of Female Artists” in honor of Women’s History Month. Make a song suggestion here.

In addition to the “75 Years of…” series, WESU plans to offer physical and virtual exhibits of WESU artifacts and audio, and launch a capital campaign fueled by a series of live fundraising concerts and events. This campaign, according to WESU General Manager Ben Michael, will fund necessary station upgrades such as installing a back-up power system and replacement of the station’s 25-year-old mixing boards. Members of the station also hope to produce a film project that documents the history and significance of WESU.

WESU radio, founded in 1939, was named the Hartford Advocate’s “Best College Radio Station” in 2013. Vote for WESU again here, or make a pledge online here.

 

 

WESU 88.1 “Best College Radio”

Standing, Jesse Brent, Mickey Capper, Ben Michael, Adam Wechsler, Adam Isaacson, Katherine Cohen and John Whalen; Kneeling, Isabelle Gauthier and Rick Sinkiewicz; Lying down, Adrien DeFontaine and Avery Trufelman. (Photo by Robert Cooper)

Standing, Jesse Brent, Mickey Capper, Ben Michael, Adam Wechsler, Adam Isaacson, Katherine Cohen and John Whalen; Kneeling, Isabelle Gauthier and Rick Sinkiewicz; Lying down, Adrien DeFontaine and Avery Trufelman. (Photo by Robert Cooper)

Wesleyan’s WESU 88.1 FM was named the “2013 Best College Radio Station” by the Hartford Advocate in April 2013.

Read more.

88.1 WESU Named “Best College Radio Station” in Advocate Readers Poll

For the first time, 88.1 FM WESU was elected the “Best College Radio Station” in the 2013 Hartford Advocate Readers Poll.

WESU is Wesleyan’s non-commercial college and community radio station, reaching an audience of 1 million people throughout Connecticut and southern Massachusetts. The station offers a wide variation of music and free form shows, as well as a schedule of public affairs and independent and alternative news programming. On last year’s Hartford Advocate Readers Poll, WESU placed third, behind 91.7 FM WHUS, from the University of Connecticut, and 91.3 FM WWUH, from the University of Hartford.

Rob DeRosa, host of WESU local music show “Homegrown” and manager of the Red and Black Café, placed second in the “Best Radio Show” category.

WESU Radio Hosts Holiday Pledge Drive

88.1 FM WESU recently completed a 3-year project of quadrupling its broadcasting power from 1,500 to 6,000 watts (ERP) with support from its listeners. Ben Michael, pictured near the transmitter, is counting on the local community to “give the gift of community radio” this holiday season.

Wesleyan’s non-commercial college and community radio station, 88.1FM WESU, is holding its sixth annual WESU Holiday Pledge Drive. This year’s drive continues through the end of live programming at 3 a.m. on Sunday Dec. 12.

This year’s drive continues through the end of live programming at 3 a.m. on Sunday Dec. 12.

The goal for this year’s two-week drive is to raise $15,000 in listener support to sustain operating expenses throughout the coming year. Meeting this goal will keep WESU on track to raise $30,000 in community support before the end of the fiscal year in July.

During its 71st anniversary year, WESU completed the 3-year project of quadrupling its broadcasting power from 1,500 to 6,000 watts (ERP). This upgrade has nearly doubled WESU’s potential listening audience from roughly 500,000 to 1 million people throughout Connecticut and southern Massachusetts. In an event commemorating this

WESU 88.1 FM Upgrade Allows Station to Reach 1M Listeners

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After three years of engineering, implementing structural and electrical upgrades, and navigating the FCC, Wesleyan’s listener supported community radio station WESU 88.1FM, is now broadcasting at a newly assigned power of 6,000 watts of effective radiated power (ERP).

WESU 88.1 FM station general manager Ben Michael stands by the station’s 30-year-old transmitter housed in the penthouse of Exley Science Center. The instrument was recalibrated to transmit 6,000 watts of effective radiated power (ERP) through a new antenna, allowing the station to broadcast into southern Massachusetts. For the past three decades, the station only produced 1,500 watts of ERP. (Photo by Olivia Drake)

“This is a major milestone for WESU since we have been broadcasting at a power of 1,500 watts for the past three decades,” explains station general manager Ben Michael. “This ‘once in a generation’ power upgrade makes our radio signal available to twice as many potential listeners in Connecticut and Massachusetts.”

Michael estimates the potential listening audience of close to 1 million within their protected contour.

In April 2008, the FCC granted WESU a construction permit to make preparations to quadruple their output power. The Community Health Center provided funding for the design and construction of the station’s new directional antenna and much of the legal and engineering work necessary for the upgrade.

Partner station WSHU in Fairfield, Conn. donated a 1960s vintage Gates transmitter as a backup unit to WESU’s 30 year old Harris transmitter which was recalibrated to pump out the power needed to transmit 6,000 watts ERP through their new antenna. WSHU’s engineering team provided all of the transmitter and tower work with the assistance of Ben Michael and support from Wesleyan physical plant staff.

The transmitter and other electrical equipment is housed in Exley Science Center’s penthouse, and the copper,

WESU 88.1 FM Hosting Holiday Pledge Drive

Ben Michael, general manager of WESU 88.1 FM radio, hopes to raise $25,000 during the station's annual pledge drive. Funds are used to sustain operating expenses throughout the coming year. (Photo by Bill Burkhart)

Ben Michael, general manager of WESU 88.1 FM radio, hopes to raise $25,000 during the station's annual pledge drive. Funds are used to sustain operating expenses throughout the coming year. (Photo by Bill Burkhart)

Wesleyan’s non-commercial college and community radio station, 88.1FM WESU, calls on listeners to give the gift of WESU this holiday season during The Fifth Annual WESU Holiday Pledge Drive.

The goal for this year’s drive is to raise $25,000 in listener support to sustain operating expenses throughout the coming year. As Wesleyan struggles to close a budget gap this fiscal year, WESU faces more pressure than ever to become a self- sustaining community service. To date, the station has raised $13,000.

“To be able to keep pace with the revenue we in raised past years pledge drives in this tough economy is a true testament to the good service our volunteers are committed to providing to the various communities we serve,” says Ben Michael, WESU general manager.

With its 70th anniversary year

WESU 88.1 Program in Christian Science Monitor

The program, “The Middletown Youth Radio Project” (MYRP) on Wesleyan’s station WESU 88.1 FM was featured in the Feb. 3 edition of The Christian Science Monitor. MYRP partners 12 elementary and middle-school students with eight Wesleyan University student mentors. Every Friday night, two 10- to 12-year-old DJs put on their headsets in the WESU radio studios and host their own half-hour radio show. Both Wesleyan students and the neighborhood kids benefit from MYRP, says Sonia BasSheva Mañjon, vice president of diversity and strategic partnerships, and Ben Michael, WESU station manager.

“The program … connects students and their curricula work with hands-on application right here in our neighborhood ,” Mañjon says in the article.

88.1 FM WESU Begins Holiday Pledge Drive

Ben Michael, general manager of 88.1 FM WESU is asking listeners to donate this holiday season during the Fourth Annual Winter Pledge Drive.Wesleyan's own non-commercial, listener-supported radio station, 88.1 FM WESU is hoping listeners give the gift of WESU this holiday season during its Fourth Annual Winter Pledge Drive Dec. 1-14.

Operating as a community service of Wesleyan since 1939, WESU has served Connecticut river valley listeners for nearly seven decades and is one of the oldest college radio stations in America.