UR’s radio station WRUR and WXXI, an NPR affiliate, announced the fall semester schedule on Sept.. 18, which is to last through winter break.
“It is catering to people who are really looking for a big variety,” WRUR General Manager and junior C. Mike Lindsey said.
Former Dean of The College William Green approached WXXI over three years ago to create a collaboration between WXXI and WRUR. Since then, a trial period began and in early September, a five-year partnership contract was announced. It is a win-win situation for both stations: WRUR students gain professional advice and equipment and WXXI gains prime air-time for their audiences on weekdays from 5 to 9 a.m. and 4 to 6 p.m. on 88.5 FM.
With the exception of NPR’s “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered,” which respectively fill the time slots above, the fall semester programs are predominantly student run.
Exceptions include national programs such as “World Caf” and “Sounds Eclectic,” aimed at college students, which will air along with a weekly program by Eastman School and College Music professor John Covach.
NPR’s shows originally aired on WXXI’s station, 1370 AM. However, due to quirks in AM signals, the eastern and western Rochester suburbs cannot receive the station after dusk and before dawn.
For this fall schedule, WXXI and WRUR worked together to find what musical formats were “unserved” and how to build their audience.
“I wish I could do that for all my groups: match them up with professionals,” Director of Wilson Commons and Student Activities Anne-Marie Algier said. “It would be good for both sides.”
WRUR station reaches over 650,000 listeners, a number that has tripled within the past three years.
Rochester’s radio stations are owned by a select few, therefore WRUR can offer music and varieties that may be hard to find on other stations.
WXXI and WRUR formatted their schedule in Adult Album Alternative format.
“AAA format is music that college students like, that their parents would like as well, everything from Beatles to Wilco – it’s pretty diverse,” Lindsey stated. “That’s the goal of the whole thing – to expose people to new or old music that they may not have experienced yet.”
“If you make it more professional, more people will listen,” Executive Vice President of WXXI Sue Rogers said. “If the station ups its coverage, it’ll make it more powerful.”
WRUR has increased their promotion and availability to students. Webstream, which allows students to listen to the radio from the computer, is now available on WRUR’s Web site. They are planning to increase promotion for concerts, including local bands, open mic nights and other music events in Rochester.
“We’re basically a free resource for promotion,” Lindsey said. “Anyone that’s doing anything can send us some information and we can read it on the air for free and in return we ask that they have WRUR on something, somewhere at their event.”
For a complete broadcasting schedule, see WRUR’s Web site, http://www.wrur.org. Erickson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.