October 30, 2021

World wide spoopy

First of all, let me start by thanking the approximately 470 donors who contributed more than $47,000 during WRIR's Fall 2021 fund drive, topping our $45,000 goal (the highest goal we've ever set) and making this drive the second largest in our 16+ year history, trailing only this past spring.
One thing that long ago stopped surprising me about "The Sound of Surprise" (one of Richmond Independent Radio's favorite nicknames) is the generosity of our supporters.  But you folks really went above and beyond this time!  So let me give each of you a pat on the back.  Or at least a fist bump.  And if donating somehow slipped your mind, it's still not too late: just visit wrir.org and click on the red Donate button.
Now, on to the music.  You may have thought you'd heard the last of WRIR's Halloween 2021 shows.  But Global A Go-Go is here on the day in question (Halloween Sunday October 31, 1:00-3:00 PM on WRIR, for two weeks afterwards on the wrir.org archive player, check your local listings for airing on other radio stations, and any old time at my podcast site) bringing stories and sounds macabre, supernatural, demonic and bone-chilling from the Caribbean, Eastern Europe, England, Latin America and Africa.  Now that's scary, kids!

October 23, 2021

WRIR's Fall 2021 fund drive

WRIR's Fall 2021 Fund Drive is now underway -- we're working to raise $45,000 by Wednesday October 27 to power "the tower of low power" in Richmond for another six months. Thank you if you have previously donated to Richmond Independent Radio; I'm writing to encourage you to make a donation once again this fall, if you can. You can make that donation in two minutes by clicking this link: wrir.org/donating.
This time around, WRIR's Social Media folks asked all of our DJs to submit a photograph of ourselves and a response to the question "Why do you volunteer at WRIR?" My photograph is above, and my answer is the same today as it was when I started volunteering back in 2004, a year before we went on the FM airwaves: "Because the public airwaves belong to the public."

October 19, 2021

Charts October 11-17, 2021

WRIR's NACC World Top Ten
1 JUCARA MARCAL |  Delta Estacio Blues | QTV Selo-Mais Um
2 LOS BITCHOS | "Las Panteras" [Single] | City Slang
3 QUANTIC AND NIDIA GONGORA | "Balada Borracha" [Single] | Tru Thoughts
4 HAILU MERGIA AND THE WALIAS BAND | Tezeta | Awesome Tapes From Africa
5 VAUDOU GAME | Noussin | Hot Casa
6 BOMBA ESTEREO | Deja | Sony Latin
7 JOSEPH SPENCE | Encore: Unheard Recordings Of Bahamian Guitar And Singing | Smithsonian Folkways
8 BACAO RHYTHM AND STEEL BAND | Expansions | Big Crown
9 TONY ALLEN | There Is No End | Decca France
10 ATONGO ZIMBA | From A To Z | Jinn

October 12, 2021

Charts Sep 27 - Oct 10, 2021

WRIR's NACC World Top Ten
1 TAJ WEEKES | Pause | Jatta
2 JOSE GONZALEZ | Local Valley | Mute
3 BACAO RHYTHM AND STEEL BAND | Expansions | Big Crown
4 MONEY CHICHA | Chicha Summit | Vampisoul
5 PAHUA | "El Traketeo" [Single] | Nacional
6 LOS CHAPILLACS | Lo Bueno, Lo Malo, Lo Feo Y Los Alarcosos Chapillacs | Vampisoul
8 FRENTE CUMBIERO | Cera Perdida | La Roma
9 KEITH HUDSON | Flesh Of My Skin, Blood Of My Blood | VP
10 BOMBA ESTEREO | Deja | Sony Latin

October 8, 2021

Let your vibes be high & your message mighty

It's time for the Richmond Folk Festival, back in person after a pandemic year in the online format.  One of the artists I'm most excited to see at this year's festival is the St. Lucian reggae singer-songwriter Taj Weekes, who combines an ethereal voice like John Holt's with cutting lyrics reminiscent of Peter Tosh.
Taj will join me in WRIR's Studio A for an interview beginning a little after 1:00 PM, before he heads over to the Community Foundation Stage at 3:10 for the "Songs: Stories of Hope & Home" panel discussion and then to the Dance Pavilion at 5:15 to close out this year's festival.  We'll talk about his new album Pause, the pandemic days which he has called "the most important year of my life," his recent trip to Ghana and whatever else seems worth discussing.

Also this week (Sunday October 10, 1:00-3:00 PM on WRIR, for two weeks afterwards on the wrir.org archive player, check your local listings for airing on other radio stations, and any old time at my podcast site): Haitian mizik rasin (roots music) and an all-Latin second hour with electronica, cumbia and chicha.