Keene State College’s student-run radio station, WKNH, has provided a little bit of everything to its listeners for the last 41 years.
According to WKNH Manager, Tim Gagnon, a junior at KSC, the station was established in 1971. Gagnon explained it has always been a college music station.
“We play the underground music. We play the music rising up and getting popular,” Gagnon said.
The only restriction at WKNH, according to Gagnon, is shows are told not to play anything on the “Top 40” list.
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“We let people’s personalities come in,” Gagnon said.
Gagnon mentioned there are currently eight members of the Executive Board for WKNH and they have “several dozen” DJs at the time.
According to Gagnon, they add a new DJ to the team every couple of weeks. Gagnon stated what he really wants is for the student body to realize anybody can be a DJ with a talk show or, really, any type of show they choose.
Gagnon stated his plans to resign as manager in January, and said KSC senior, Joe Raposa will fill his place.
Besides shadowing Gagnon, Raposa is also the music director at WKNH. According to Raposa, WKNH plays music 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Raposa explained there is a computer at the station playing music when no one is physically at the station.
He said Thursday and Sunday nights happen to be the busiest nights at WKNH. One fun perk of being a DJ at WKNH, Raposa added, is that DJs are allowed to be in the Young Student Center after hours.
Raposa said he always considered working in radio. Raposa said he found WKNH on Accepted Students Day.
At the time, Raposa explained he was a freshman, and due to a Radio Broadcast class he was required in order to work for the radio station, so he opted out.
The following year, Raposa explained, he found himself back at the station not needing a class this time.
He was trained the first couple of nights by some of the older DJs.
“We played whatever songs. It didn’t really matter. There was no format and it was fun,” Raposa said.
Raposa, like many other workers at WKNH, has his own radio show. It is called “The Play” and is currently live on the air Wednesday nights from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m.
According to Raposa, his show plays heavy metal music. Raposa said he plays “Whatever music [he] felt like throwing on [his] playlist that night.” Raposa also mentioned that he tries to feature local bands on his show.
Another show WKNH radio airs is “Authority Kids.”
Max Mendelsohn, Michael Graham, and Ryan Young, all KSC students, are the voices behind “Authority Kids.” Graham is also the program director at WKNH. He is in charge of all the programming and creating the schedule for all the different shows.
According to Mendelsohn, the group plays a wide selection of music that is not usually heard on the radio. Mendelsohn said they usually play indie rock, house music, ballads, and “a lot of Dubstep.”
“Dub’s not dead,” Mendelsohn said.
Amy Cooper, a senior, also has a show called “Girl Germs” and it runs every Monday night from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. Cooper stated her show as being a more “refined” version of “Authority Kids.” Cooper said she plays peppy, techno music but “cools down” towards the end. “You could exercise to my show,” Cooper said.
Although WKNH is strictly a student-run radio station at KSC, they also work with outside groups.
Stephanie Caravedo, a senior at KSC, is WKNH’s events coordinator. According to Caravedo, her job is to pull together everyone’s thoughts and ideas and see what they are interested in.
She also works with other clubs and organizations and helps the community.
When it comes to helping the community, WKNH has reached out to help The Starving Artist, a nonprofit creative collective for performances, lecturers, workshops and galleries can be presented or displayed.
However, The Starving Artist is no longer established in Keene. According to Gagnon, WKNH always had a close relationship with The Starving Artist. In order to help them out, Gagnon said WKNH has gathered a group of bands and artists to record acoustic versions of their songs and WKNH will compile them into one CD. Gagnon said one of the bands on the CD is The Civil Wars.
According to Gagnon, The Civil Wars recently won a Grammy and recorded a song with Taylor Swift for the Hunger Games film.
Gagnon said they plan to sell the CD on Nov. 13 at $3 for KSC students and $4 for anyone else. All the proceeds will go to the Starving Artist.
Shannon Flynn can be contacted at