Rice and Beans

An interesting post from a former DJ at Rice University’s KTRU on the Vibes d’Afrique discussion board, delineating, among other things, the extent of the attrition among college and community radio stations. The Owl students are far from finished:

I host “The Africana Show” on Rice University Radio, KTRU- 91.7 FM Houston, Saturdays 1-3. Tuesday morning we discovered the Rice University is selling our license and frequency to KUHF-FM, the local NPR station for $9.5 million. Rice didn’t consult the students, the station, or faculty; instead, they negotiated the sale in secret. The University considered our beloved station as “an under utilized asset.”

Why should you care? NPR affiliate stations have been gobbling up college and community stations throughout the USA. (Rice, Texas Tech, St. Olaf, Duquesne, Long Island U, John Hopkins, Portland Public Schools, Clover Park Tech-Tacoma, Augustana College-Sioux Falls, the list goes on, additionally, most state university stations are NPR affiliates, not student run). College students and community members get pushed out by the sound alike public radio. My African show’s spot will be replaced by yet another rendition of Water Music by Sir Neville Mariner and the Orchestra of St. Martin’s in the Field. I love classical music, but the loss of KTRU is part of the homogenization of America. NPR’s expansion and domination of community radio mirrors Clear Channel’s rise. I now see NPR as a corporate raider. Will your station be next?

Many of those who post here either are broadcasters on community radio or started in college radio. My love of African music was fostered by my time on college radio. There is no other show in Houston devoted to solely to African music. We will all lose by the death of college radio.

KTRUvians are upset and we are fighting back; I am asking for your support and emails to president@rice.edu . Visit www.savektru.org I thank you for your support.


Chris Spadone

PS: My show Saturday will be my 3rd annual “Old School, Back to School, War Horse Orgy—Africa’s Greatest Hits!” Tune into www.ktru.org for 2 hours of classic hits.

Sources: http://www.radiosurvivor.com/2009/12/24/….-college-radio/




2 Responses

  1. Thanks for reposting my letter. Just two minor points. I am still on KTRU and the letter is from last August.

  2. Why hasn’t Rolling Stone Magazine run a cover story on the nationwide coast-to-coast destruction of college radio by the NPR syndicate…?

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