By Nick Bray, Staff Writer
Since 1972, WUMF has been providing the soundtrack for the not only university, but for the greater Farmington community as well. After 44 years on air, the radio station continues to attract DJs to play a wide variety of music. This spring, WUMF will uphold many of its long standing traditions, including the much anticipated Battle of The Bands.
With its slogan “Where Undiscovered Music is Found”, it is evident that the casual radio listener has a plethora of options when tuning into 91.5 FM or online via the Shoutcast streaming service. The genres of classic rock, rock, and alternative are the most popular genres of music played by the DJs. Underrepresented genres include hip hop and electronic.
Each semester, as interested DJs request time on the air, the staff at WUMF prepare the show schedule. To make the schedule the most efficient, the shows are grouped by genre, and placed on the same night.
“We try to get all the classic rock shows together,” said Production Manager Luke Deems. “So when someone tunes into the radio station who likes classic rock will more likely listen to more shows.” Monday features classic rock, Thursday is modern rock, and Friday is alternative. The rest of the shows are sprinkled into the schedule. The staff takes the necessary steps to ensure that all interested DJs have a time slot that works for them.
WUMF has an eclectic group of DJs, each with their own flairs. Julia Lent’s show, ‘Off the Wall’, is one of the stations more unique programs. “She has a whole DJ character that she has developed. She is a different person on the air,” said Deems. Her on air DJ name is Zosime, and her show is on Monday nights, from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Each show also has a unique title, like Annie Moloney and Zoe Mann-Weiner’s ‘Peanut Butter and Slamjam Sandwich’.
“The name came from nowhere,” said Moloney. “I think I was looking at my jar of chunky Skippy peanut butter when I came up with that name. Their show can be heard on Thursdays, from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
In addition to broadcasting music over the air, WUMF hosts and participates in various events in the community. One of it’s most popular events is the Battle of the Bands competition. This is a chance for local and regional bands to come to UMF to play and compete for the title of best band. The date for this isn’t set yet, but it will likely be the end of April, and will be included as part of the Spring Fling festivities.
WUMF also is planning a block party after the success of the one they had in the fall semester. The radio station will also live sound for various events including Relay for Life and the Hospice House 5k Run/Walk.
In a way to give back to the community, the radio station will be holding a clothing and food drive to benefit various local charities. Station Manager Mike Diffin says they will be taking any new and used clothing and non-perishable food items starting February 29, through mid April. “If you donate, you will get your name entered into a raffle and we will be giving a few items away,” said Diffin.