Amoeblog

In The Case Of KUSF 90.3FM, You Don't Know What You Got Til It's Gone

Posted by Billyjam, June 7, 2011 11:13am | Post a Comment

Joni Mitchell's "Big Yellow Taxi" summed up the KUSF FM situation


I always appreciate when people utilize relevant song lyrics to reinforce a point they are making. Hence I enjoyed, during Saturday's heated Saving College Stations panel discussion on the last day of the NFCB's (National Federation of Community Broadcasters) 36th Annual Community Radio Conference in the Fillmore suite of the Parc 55 hotel in downtown San Francisco, when panelist Dorothy Kidd, quoted and gave props to Joni Mithcell's 1970 song "Big Yellow Taxi." "You don't know what you got til its gone," said the Save KUSF advocate & University of San Francisco (USF) media studies professor quoting the song's famous lyrics in reference to how she, as a listener/fan of the beloved SF college radio station, felt in the weeks and months since January 18th when  90.3FM got the plug pulled on it by her bosses at USF. 

"We don't need  technocrats to come in and control our station," continued the articulate and ever vigilant Kidd, who as a panelist at last month's SF Music Tech Summit similarly spoke out against the actions of the USF administrators. At Saturday's panel however she was directing her comments at fellow panelist (and seeming target of the entire discussion) Marc Hand of PRC (Public Radio Capital) out of Denver, CO whose company was instrumental in brokering the deal that paved the way for KUSF FM's demise.
 
Another panelist was WFMU New Jersey station manager Ken Freedman, one of the Save KUSF organization's biggest allies, who point blankly asked Hand how he could broker such a deal which he knew in his heart was just plain wrong and detrimental to the community's needs. Freedman was referring to the demise of KUSF and such other stations as KTRU FM - the Rice University radio station in Houston, TX that two months ago similarly had the plug pulled on it following a PRC brokered deal.  Panelist Duane Bradley, of Pacifica station KPFT, Houston, spoke on behalf of KTRU and noted that how Rice University's lame excuse for getting rid of the popular Houston college station after 40 years on the air was that they "needed the space to build a new cafeteria." Bradley also made the excellent point of how, when a volunteer run college or community radio station like KTRU or KUSF goes away for good, so too does the combined pool of irreplaceable resources of music programmers who are extremely knowledgeable of and passionate for the music they specialize in - so much so that they do it all for free.

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Fifth Month In Exile, Ousted KUSF DJs Continue To Be Remarkably Resilient, Tirelessly Keeping Station Going 24/7 Online and Fighting To Get Back on FM Dial

Posted by Billyjam, June 3, 2011 10:54pm | Post a Comment

While the tireless members of the Save KUSF organization are realistic enough not to expect any miracles to come out of the NFCB's (National Federation of Community Broadcasters) 36th Annual Community Radio Conference at the Parc 55 hotel in downtown San Francisco this week, which features the pertinent panel discussion Saving College Stations on Saturday (June 4th) morning at 9am, there is an underlying hope that with this national gathering of like minded individuals - equally passionate about the importance 
 
of local, community radio - that some new pointers on how to get KUSF back on the FM dial might arise. Or at the very least that there will be a show of solidarity towards the unfairly ousted KUSF programmers from their fellow left of the dial broadcasters of the NFCB whose tag is, "We are local. We are global. We are independent, connected, and engaged." 

Since KUSF was abruptly pulled off the FM dial on January 18th, when the University of San Francisco (USF) management secretly worked out a deal with Public Radio Capital (PRC) replacing 90.3FM with an out of town programmed classical station, the ripples have been felt across the country by other college & small non-commercial radio stations who, particularly in this time of federal & state funding cutbacks and universities clamoring for ways to generate money, wonder if they might be next to get the plug pulled on them. The move by USF was not an isolated one but rather part of an increasing trend by budget challenged colleges across the country. While tomorrow's panel will focus on the events that went down at KUSF and KTRU (another radio station that got kicked off the air) its message of what to do when your station faces the chopping block is as much, if not more so, directed at those college/student stations that are still on air but could soon face a similar fate.

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With 14 Radio Stations Simulcasting, KUSF in Exile Amoeba SF Instore Was Historic Event

Posted by Billyjam, February 24, 2011 05:05am | Post a Comment
Last Friday afternoon's Save KUSF themed KUSF In Exile Amoeba Music San Francisco instore featured half-hour sets by six popular DJs from the recently ousted, much beloved San Francisco radio station. It was a history making event in which fourteen non-commercial radio stations across the nation all simulcast the WFMU New Jersey remote broadcast live. The event was also streamed on KUSFarchives.org with a live video stream on yowie.com. As DJs Schmeejay, Irwin, Harry D, Jantine B, Carolyn, and Stereo Steve spun vinyl sets, dropping in classic KUSF IDs in between songs, with myself and WFMU co-host Gaylord Fields MC'ing the event, California radio stations in the Bay Area, Davis, and LA, in tandem with radio stations in seven other states across the US simultaneously carried the broadcast both terrestrially and via their respective online streams. These stations included many left of the dial college stations fearful of a DJ Irwin KUSFsimilar fate in this current economic climate in which universities have been selling off their FM stations for a quick cash fix with no regard to the importance of the role that their stations play in their respective communities.

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Six KUSF DJs Featured on Feb 18th Amoeba San Francisco Instore to be Broadcast Live on A Dozen US Radio Stations

Posted by Billyjam, February 13, 2011 11:23pm | Post a Comment
In an act of solidarity with the Save KUSF movement and the legions of KUSF 90.3FM supporters still in shock over the sudden silencing last month of San Francisco's beloved freeform radio station, Amoeba Music San Francisco will join forces with New Jersey's WFMU radio tnd several other radio stations this Friday, February 18th, to host an all KUSF DJ live remote broadcast that will be on WFMU airwaves back east as well as streaming online on WFMU.org. KUSF DJs spinning music sets during the 3 hour instore that begins at noon sharp will include Irwin (Sleeves on Hearts), Carolyn, Stereo Steve, Jantine B, Harry D (In The Soul Kitchen), and DJ Schmeejay, who was in the middle of his popular Tuesday morning show, Radiodrome, on the morning of January 18th when the plug (literally) was pulled on the 90.3FM transmitter. 

The other radio stations who will be broadcasting the Save KUSF Amoeba instore include KXLU Los Angeles who broadcast on 88.9FM, WXYC Chapel Hill, North Carolina who broadcast on 89.3FM, KFJC 89.7FM, WCBN Ann Arbor, KVRX Austin, KALX 90.7FM Berkeley, WITC Cazenovia NY, WREK Atlanta, KRFP Moscow, Idaho and KZSU Stanford who, as any Bay Area radio fan already knows, are at 90.1FM. Each station will broadcast both terrestrially and on their online streams.

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Interview with Amoeba Hollywood's Mahssa about Finders Keepers Records, Whose Recent Releases Include the Stone Soundtrack

Posted by Billyjam, August 11, 2010 03:40pm | Post a Comment
Mahssa

Although technically only around for the past six years, the UK based record label Finders Keepers has been, according to its owners, in the making for the past 40 years! The rich, diverse and offbeat music in the Finders Keepers catalog (a melange of psychedelic, funk, folk, jazz, avant-garde and "whacked-out movie musak to a lost world of undiscovered vinyl artifacts from the annals of alternative pop history") spans recordings from the last 40 (and more) years, and from all over the globe. For example two, of its recent impressive releases are the CD/2LP Pomegranates compilation of 60's & 70's Persian Pomegranates  Finder Keepersfunk, folk, psych and other pop quirkiness; and the avant-pop meets funk-rock soundtrack to the movie Stone, the 1974 Australian biker psych cult classic that, complete with a glowing Quentin Tarantino endorsement, is being relaunched with a big screening at Lincoln Center in NYC this Friday.
 
Both the label's founder, Andy Votel, and Finders Keepers' US rep (and Amoeba Hollywood employee) Mahssa will be at the NY screening event. I recently caught up with Mahssa at the SoCal Amoeba to talk about Finders Keepers and how she got involved with the eclectic and most unique UK label that accurately describes itself as an "accidental world music label with a punk aesthetic and DJ friendly ethos."  

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