Okay so in an attempt to make up for my shit post last week, I decided that I really want to tell you guys more about WXYC! I just got back from my regular show (which is Tuesday from midnight to 3am aka the Monday night homework hours) and omg it was really good I had so much fun and also I drank a huuuggee coffee during it so I’m still a bit wired.
So it’s kind of strange how some shows can just be way better than others because they are objectively all the same: a few hours of as great a variety of music as possible with some talking here and there. Some factors that contribute to good shows (IMO) include: covering a wide range of genres, fun and personable talksets, callers who request songs (!!!), good transitions, and so on. On the other hand, some of my least favorite shows have been because of: playing a lot of songs that sound really similar (read “ambient music”), general exhaustion, no callers, or even worse, annoying callers, etc etc. But tonight was a good show :~)
When people ask me what kind of music I play as a DJ at xyc, I usually give the general spiel that “WXYC is a free-format station which means that we try to play music from a wide variety of time periods, genres, tastes yadda yadda” but what I’m really thinking is “ok most of the time i just pull random records from different sections and hope for the best” which is kind of hard to explain if you don’t know what the radio station looks like. THUS! I’m gonna attach a couple of videos of myself giving a really quick tour of WXYC (which I initially filmed for Erin who wanted to compare the UGA station to ours) so WATCH IT NOW and then come back.
haha i sound so pretentious when i’m like “i prefer vinyl” but ok i’ve never had so much vinyl at my disposal it’s such a treat!!! so as I hope you can see, we kind of have an overwhelming amount of music (over 70,000 physical copies! and a great majority are reviewed by former and current DJs which allows me to choose records without having heard them) which makes wxyc really special I think. Also unlike a lot of other college radio stations, there is always going to be a DJ in the station at all hours of the day throughout the entire year. We don’t have an “autopilot” playlist sort of mechanism for the graveyard hours (which is why new DJs get those heh). And because there’s no playlist function, the job itself is really hands on since you’re constantly changing pieces of music, sampling tracks off of the next record to see which one fits best, tryna master that transition n shit. This is often why I personally gravitate towards longer tracks because it’s a lot less stressful trying to find a good follow-up in 5 minutes as opposed to like a minute and a half. Haha so long story short, even tho I’m mostly by myself for the entire 3 hour show, it goes by super quickly and I tend to be occupied from start to finish.
so “my show was good tonight” WHat doES thaT mEAN ! Here is exactly what I played from midnight to 3 to give you sort of an idea:
I really try to keep in mind what it would be like if I were on the other side of the radio signal – I feel like that’s what makes a good show. Even if I’m really in the mood for idk free jazz improvisation shit, I try to balance my shows in a way that can appeal to as many listeners as possible. bc like imagine listening to the radio and ur listening to a house track that you really just want to be over, but then the next song is SO SIMILAR so ur like fuck this [changes channel]. That’s why creative transitions are sooooo powerful/important in keeping your show moving forward instead of stagnating.
I’m actually gonna attach two 30-minute chunks from this show in particular if you’re interested in skipping through and making fun of my talksets HAHAHA. I really liked how the first 30 minutes went and then also the 1:30-2 chunk HAHA you’ll see why. Omg after my first 30 minutes, I actually got a request from this guy who said that he’d listened to me before, that he really liked my shows, AND that I was one of the better DJs he’d listened to on wxyc which is like [ego inflates] HAHAHAH. but like ah! I feel like I put so much of myself into my shows that it means so much when people call in and tell me that they’re enjoying my show! :,) He also requested New Order afterwards which was like hell ya
But yeah like holy shit do I feel so lucky to be involved with the radio station here. The community is so unique and interesting and everyone has something special to offer. I feel like a lot of the reason I assimilated so well into UNC culture was bc I was meeting people of all different ages who encouraged me to explore different social circles and points of view. Lol the reason I bolded POV is because everyone seems to have a very definitive stance on what “good music” is which is super interesting. Although it can sometimes get kind of infuriating when you haven’t listened to a particular album and you get the classic “you haven’t listened to this?? god, what do you even listen to?” But I’m a tough & curious cookie who’s just incredibly open to learn and I think a lot of older DJs see that! ALSO omg just having the privilege to sit and to listen and to explore is beyond my wildest dreams. You guys both know how music has always been a pretty big part of my life, but I feel like because of XYC, it has really blossomed. I feel so so so lucky to just be able to dedicate a few hours of my week solely to playing music for people. and lol even though it’s almost 4:30 as I’m wrapping this up, it is like stupidly worth it for me. I’ll easily tell anyone that the station is my favorite part about UNC and so I hope that this gives you an insight as to why :^’)
Ashley //// DJ CHOOCH (lol it stuck)
p.s. I have my first live DJ gig on February 11th!!! I’ll keep u guys updated on it, but yeah I’ll be mixing Valentine’s Day tracks at a frickin club which is wild hahahah I’m so nervous but really ecstatic to get better at this particular kind of DJing
p.p.s. I forgot to mention how it really means a lot how supportive not only my friends have been, but also MY PARENTS!!! omg they’ll text me whenever they tune in and since they’ve been listening since like my first show ever, they’ll give me notes on how I’ve improved which is just so sweet. I guess a lot of why they’ve gotten so into my shows is bc it’s often the closest thing they get to consistently hearing from me and catching glimpses of my personality in between all this music and in general all the noise of life. I always like to have a reggae track on deck just in case they text me that they’re listening heh for Kim