• On-Air

  • Pledge Drive Ends, Fall Schedule 2k13 Begins

    September 17th, 2013

    Hey all,

    Pledge drive was a huge success this year — we at WVKR wish to extend a big THANK YOU to everyone who pledged this week!! The money that you’ve donated will be used for crucial elements of our station, including our broadcast tower rental, online stream, and repairs/upgrades to our studio equipment. We couldn’t keep the motor running without your kind support, so we can’t say thanks enough. We’re excited to provide you with some of the most eclectic programming in the Hudson Valley (and beyond!) for yet another year. Hugs and high-fives all around.

    Our fall schedule has begun today, and we’re very stoked to welcome back our returning student DJs (a fresh batch of new student DJs will be joining us soon as well, so keep watching this space)! Feel free to check the program guide above, find a few student shows that sound cool to you, and tune in all season to hear us bright-eyed / bushy-tailed / kinda-weird college kids playing the music we love and spreading the news we care about.

    Keep it tuned to the freewaves!
    Jay Lancaster
    General Manager // 2013-2014


    PLEDGE DRIVE 2013 !!!

    September 6th, 2013

    To our Loyal Listeners:

    I’m pleased to announce that WVKR’s 2013 Pledge Drive has arrived! From Tuesday, September 10th through Monday, September 16th, you can donate by calling in to 845.437.7178 or sending in an online form below.

    Why pledge?

    1. WVKR operation is only possible with listener support.  As an independent radio station, we are powered by our listeners. The majority of our station’s funds come from folks who enjoy our programming. We hope to continue providing nonstop music, news, and talk to the Hudson Valley community (and our online listeners!) for many, many years to come. To achieve this goal, we interrupt our programming for one week a year in order to ask you, our valued listeners, to donate any amount. For the rest of the year, you may enjoy nonstop, commercial-free programming. Join us in keeping independent radio alive!

    2. Support your favorite shows. Let our DJs know just how much they are appreciated. Our eclectic variety of programming on WVKR is achievable only because of our listeners’ contribution.

    3. If you pledge to WVKR and elect to take no premiums, your pledge is tax-deductible. If you do receive premiums, the surplus of your pledge is tax-deductible.

    4. Take advantage of your employing company’s matching grant program to give your favorite station an added boost.

    To print out our online pledge form, please click one of the links below:

    2013 Online Pledge Drive Form (PDF)
    2013 Online Pledge Drive Form (DOC)


    The sticker. Sleek, five-colored, and ready to adhere.

    The magnet. An eye-catching addition to your fridge or magnetic surface of choice. Très chic.

    The sticker + magnet combo can be yours for any donation between $0.01 and $24.99.

    Up next, I present the vintage tee and tank, designs from previous years that we love so much we just had to bring them back. Perfect for warmer weather and/or conveying your love of unicorns.

    The vintage tote. It holds stuff. Fashionably.

    For any donation between $25 and $49.99, the sticker, magnet, and choice of vintage tee, tank, or tote is all yours. Please note that only some of our vintage designs are depicted above.

    And now, ladies and gentlemen, introducing — the 2013 tee & tote.


    Tees are available in your choice of sky blue, grey, or white (not pictured).

    The sticker, magnet, and your choice of 2013 tee or tote is available for any donation between $50 and $74.99. You can snag all four for any donation between $75 and $99.99.

    And lastly, the icing on the cake. For any donation over $100, we will supply you with the sticker, magnet, 2013 tee & tote, PLUS an assortment of miscellaneous vintage goodies. Jar openers! Compact mirrors! Much, much more!

    Jay Lancaster
    General Manager @ WVKR

    “Democracy Now!” To Return To WVKR

    September 5th, 2013

    Hello listeners!

    The executive staff at WVKR has resolved to bring “Democracy Now!” back to our airwaves starting on September 17th. The program will resume in its previous slot, 8-9AM, 5 days a week.

    We want to thank the listeners who reached out to us and made their voices heard about concerns regarding the show’s hiatus. We believe that, despite the syndicated program’s realtime broadcast and the potential legal threat that could arise should indecency air, “Democracy Now!” ultimately serves as an indispensable early morning news resource to our listenership. So we’re bringing it on back.

    Thanks for tuning in, folks. More announcements to follow shortly!

    Jay Lancaster
    General Manager @ WVKR

    WVKR Goes to Pitchfork!

    July 7th, 2013
    Hey Listeners, this is your Music Director Nick here! In a few weeks I’ll be heading back to Illinois to see two things:
    1. My mom
    2. Pitchfork Music Festival

    You might have caught wind of our SXSW or CMJ coverage in the past, but this’ll be, as far as I know, the first official WVKR trip to the Chicago festival!

    I’ll be resurrecting, or at least revitalizing the @wvkr Twitter while I’m there, and provide updates and critical insight as we’ve done at festivals in the past (shouts out to Jay and Thea for their glorious twitter coverage of SXSW this past Spring)

    As Music Director, I update the new music shelves from which student DJs play tracks and broadcast them to the Hudson Valley (or the the world if you’re on the internet, which, if you’re reading this, you are), and a lot of the acts I’m really excited to see at Pitchfork are favorites of our student DJ’s here at WVKR.

    I figured before I make my way out to Chicago (16 hour train ride, alright!) I’d do a blog post and highlight the music of some of my favorite artists I’m about to see. The summers at WVKR aren’t quite as active for new music shows while most students are away, so I thought this would be a cool way to keep listeners supplied with some of the best stuff that’s coming out right now!


    Mac Demarco

    If you listened to student shows this past schoolyear, I’d wager you probably heard at least some of this guy’s music. His live shows are supposedly pretty wild, but his most recent album is really some wonderfully relaxing guitar-pop.

    Mikal Cronin

    This psych-rocker and Ty Segall collaborator softened up a bit and went all Tom Petty on his most recent release, which is one of my favorites since I’ve taken over as MD. I’m not sure if I’ll actually catch any of his set, because it’s at the same time as Wire, who’ve put out some of my favorite music ever, but even if I don’t see him, you should still check out his music because it’s great.


    Way back in the 70’s, Wire put out some records that did away with conventional song structures and guitar playing in a way that made most punk music coming out at the time seem tame by comparison. Essentially, they were making post-punk while a lot of the world was still learning what punk was. I’ll admit that I’m mostly unfamiliar with their body of work past a few 70’s classics, but from what I’ve heard of their most recent effort, it doesn’t disappoint.


    Well, this Icelandic experimental songstress probably needs no introduction, but I’m too excited about seeing her to not say something. Here’s a song off her most recent album.

    White Lung

    I nearly saw these girl-fronted Canadian punks play in an apartment in Brooklyn, but I got sick and had to leave before their set and then just the other weekend I barely missed their set at 4knots festival in Manhattan. I’m really looking forward to finally seeing them. If you like music quick, loud, and blistering, White Lung is for you.

    Pissed Jeans

    Speaking of fast and loud…

    Parquet Courts

    After I didn’t see White Lung at 4knots the other weekend, I caught these guys’ live set and fell in love immediately. If you’ve listened to and enjoyed an indie record between about 1980-1995 I can almost guarantee you’ll find something to like about their music.


    Tampa punk veterans grew out of punk and started making sad New Wave music. Their most recent EP, Total Nite, was recorded by Sonic Boom of Spacemen 3-fame, and played with some psychedelic influence. Their music has clicked with just about every college-age kid I know who has been lucky enough to hear it.


    If you’ve listened to my noise rock show (Collagen Rock, 10-11pm on Tuesdays during the summer!) you’ve probably heard a good amount of these guys. Their self-titled debut, which came out on Sub Pop last year, is a dense blast of scraping, scratching, distorted guitars, a pounding rhythm section, and vocals that sound like a caged animal set loose. I doubt I’ll be standing still during their set.


    Swans were born out of the New York no-wave scene in the 80s, and made some of the ugliest, heaviest music you’re likely to ever hear. To cut a long story very short, throughout their very long career, they’ve filtered in some more melodic and pretty elements to their early formula, as well as more complex song structures, and now, 30 years into their career, they’ve come along way from the industrial stomp of their early work, but still stand as one of the most monolithic, pummeling names in music. I’ve seen them twice already, and both of those shows rank as some of the best I’ve ever seen (certainly the loudest). Here’s a song from last year’s The Seer, which most fans would agree ranks among their best work. Not too bad for a band that just hit its three decade mark.


    Like Swans, Low have been around a while now and don’t exactly make for easy listening either. But while Swans power often operates largely through blunt force and volume, Low’s music can seem incredibly fragile, built on minimal, quiet instrumentation and gorgeous harmonies. If that does sound like easy listening, let the music sink in and this fragile sound reveals itself to be startlingly powerful on an emotional level. Low got their start during the 90’s slowcore movement, but outlasted most of the peers and have made quite a few subtle but significant changes to their sound across their large body of work. Their most recent album, The Invisible Way, was produced by Jeff Tweedy of Wilco and was released earlier this year.

    Andy Stott

    I probably don’t have quite the vocabulary to talk about this kind of thing at length, but I will say that it’s really good dub influenced techno that most fans of dark electronic music ought to enjoy it quite a bit.


    I’m probably gonna pass on seeing Rustie, as his set has the unfortunate competition of festival headliner and indie mainstays  Belle & Sebastian, but I imagine festival goers who are more about dance and less about twee won’t be disappointed.

    DJ Rashad

    Again, I’m hardly an expert on this stuff, but people who are tell me he’s a pretty important figure in the Chicago dance scene, pioneering the fields of juke and footwork. From what I’ve heard, he’s made some really cool, exciting stuff, so I’ll definitely be checking out his opening time slot on Sunday. Just don’t expect me to know all the dance moves.

    Killer Mike/El-P

    The Atlanta rap veteran and the former Def Jux head honcho put out two of 2012’s best hip-hop records (both were produced entirely by El-P), and their recent collaboration, Run the Jewels, has a lot of sources calling it one of this year’s best so far. I was fortunate enough to see Mike opening for the GZA this past fall, and it might have been just about the best hip-hop show I’ve ever seen. His performance, much like his music, found a a perfect balance of ferocity, politics, charm, and humor. I think a lot of the crowd was there to see the Wu Tang member perform his classic solo effort Liquid Swords, but I don’t think there was a soul in the venue that wasn’t won over by the end of Mike’s set. Their Pitchfork slots have for some reason been scheduled back to back on different stages, but I hope they can find a way to share the stage at least for a little while.

    Yo La Tengo

    These indie rock pioneers have put out more great records in their long career than I have the space to write about here, but if you haven’t taken the time to listen to them yet, the new record is, no surprise, great.

    Lil B

    Really better listened to/seen than described, the Basedgod is probably the most prolific and perplexing phenomenon in rap music today. Sensitive ears be warned.

    Glass Candy

    80’s synth worship has gotten to be a pretty crowded field in indie music these days, but no one really does it with quite the same level of conviction and skill as Johnny Jewel’s Italians Do It Better label. Glass Candy had some of the best cuts on the label’s surprise hit compilation (After Dark 2, released earlier this year) and their brand of stylish electro-pop ought to provide a great segue into TNGHT’s set of full-on dance bangers.


    Two of dance music’s biggest names (Hudson Mohawke and Lunice) collaborate on this project and take trap music trends from hip-hop production and turn them into enormous dance tunes. Their name has been blowing up since the release of their debut EP last year, and shows no signs of slowing down after one of their beats just appeared on Kanye West’s Yeezus.

    So, that’s what I’m excited about! Are you going? Do you know of any acts that are going to be there that I’ve overlooked? Should I see R. Kelly? What’s the best breakfast place in Chicago?

    Stay tuned to this blog and our Twitter @wvkr for more updates during the festival!