Published October 31, 2016

College Radio Day

Monmouth to celebrate on Nov. 4 with several events
  • WPFS-FM (105.9) will celebrate national College Radio Day on Nov. 4.
One year ago, Monmouth College used national College Radio Day to help launch its new FM broadcast capabilities and officially transition to the radio station’s new call letters – WPFS.

This year, WPFS-FM (105.9) will celebrate the occasion on Nov. 4 by premiering a new show, participating in a national simulcast and determining its most popular show.

“This is a national event where stations across the country do different events to celebrate college radio,” said communication studies lecturer Chris Goble, the station’s adviser.

At noon the new show, Back Stage Pass, will debut. It will feature interviews with new and undiscovered bands, as well as the bands’ music.

Immediately following, WPFS will air the special one-hour College Radio Day simulcast, with exclusive interviews with Sean Lennon, Jeremiah Fraites from The Lumineers, Nikki Silva from NPR’s Kitchen Sisters, Lee Loughnane from the band Chicago, and Grace Potter.

“It’s really a big national celebration about what college radio does,” Goble said.

College radio emerged as a genre of music in the early 1980s that inherited the spirit of the underground radio stations of the 1960s and ’70s. And while the definition of college radio has evolved over the last three decades to include an even broader spectrum of artists and music, Goble said that one constant is the way it continues to embrace diversity and change.

“In today’s radio world, college radio is the one place that’s kind of free. And I don’t mean free in the sense that you get it off of the air free,” he said. “I think it’s free in the sense that students and the organizations can play lots of different music that would never go on commercial radio.”

What Goble calls “the big event” on campus is going on throughout the week. It will culminate at 7 p.m. Nov. 4 in Wells Theater. The WPFS College Radio Day-Anti Election Smackdown will have student radio shows campaign over the week to be crowned the most popular radio show.

“They will be using social media to campaign and we will have preliminary voting in the Stockdale Center during lunch hours,” Goble said. “The top two vote-getters will debate live on the stage that night to be chosen the Smackdown champion.”

Local bands will also be featured at the Smackdown, including 2015 Monmouth graduate Timothy Yates’ band.

The station’s new call letters stand for “Proud Fighting Scots,” which is based on the original 1961 name, WFS. The station changed its name to WMCR in 1970, and it officially began broadcasting as the 100-watt station WPFS in June 2015. About 40 Monmouth students are involved with the station.

“What I love about college radio is how it is really connected to the community it serves,” Goble said.
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