Another fine week of programming this week from Dawn's Early Light as I walked in though Danza Latina as I left for home after a hectic busy week. Haven't then been for all of us lately? Your passion and work for WTJU continues to amaze me! Thank you for all you do!
To encourage thought I am sending a nice email I received from a colleague from my old station WNCW in North Carolina. She came after I left, so I never had the pleasure of meeting K. C. [name changed by editor] until now by email...
I just read an article about all the controversy surrounding your proposed changes at WTJU. I had an overwhelming case of the "deja-vu's! It all sounded very similar to some of the stuff we went through at WNCW.
I'm writing to express my support for what you're doing. It seems the on-air staff is too concerned in defending what they think of as their own personal turf to consider that your efforts will actually make WTJU more inclusive, not less so. In my experience as Assistant PD and PD at WNCW, I found that even though the djs chafed at being "told what to play" (even though required rotation was only 5 songs per hour), when they were given free rein they actually narrowed their playlists to only songs that they personally liked. And as a result, their shows were less interesting in general and the station's overall sound was disjointed and seemed to lurch from one side of the musical landscape to another, depending who was on the air.
Mark Keefe was probably the strongest PD WNCW ever had, and he strictly enforced rotation and playlists. During his tenure, WNCW's cume grew (according to Arbitron) to about 120,000 per week and a typical fund drive brought in around $180,000 or more. In recent years, the playlist has been discarded and there is a laissez-faire approach to rotation with djs basically playing what they like. The last audience numbers I saw (about 2 years ago) were at just over 69,000 cume, and the last fund drive brought in $98,000. Of course, there are other factors at work, such as weaker economic conditions, but still I think the trend is clear.
Obviously, you know all this. I just wanted to give you a shout out and say keep the faith. I hope the college is with you, because in my experience that is key.