Oberlin Blogs

A New Season of Radio Springs Up!

March 1, 2024

Daniela Sueiro '27

If you haven’t had the pleasure of hearing a student’s voice--smooth, groggy from sleep, laughing, or otherwise--announce that you’re listening to WOBC FM 91.5, Oberlin College and Community Radio, trust that you’re missing out on a wonderful and essentially Oberlin experience. 

WOBC is just that--Oberlin’s 24-hour college and community radio, run by a set of talented Oberlin students. When I was thinking of what to write about this month, I gravitated towards this particular group because WOBC is more than just a radio station, it’s an institution that showcases what is so uniquely loveable about being here.

As you read about some of their fantastic shows, stream some WOBC, and enjoy the vibes. I’m honored to call these DJs friends of mine, and I couldn’t be prouder to share their incredible ideas!


6AM on Sundays—-----------Milo & the Love Show!!!

A combination of music and talk show, Milo’s radio show explores a different facet of love every week!. When I asked Milo where they got their idea, they said “Love Show!!!” was inspired by their favorite podcast, This American Life. “I realized so many of the stories had to do with love,” they said, so they decided to explore this facet of humanity by speaking with other students about their experiences with love, and playing music that corresponds with them. Their first week’s theme (if all goes to plan--radio can be unexpected!) is ‘songs that we can’t listen to anymore.’ Ex-songs, if you will. This is Milo’s first time as a DJ with WOBC, but they said they’re looking forward to getting better at telling stories, getting in touch with the human side of journalism, and hearing the stories of “people like us.” When I asked if they wanted to send a message out there, they said “I LOVE WOBC!!!”


4PM on Mondays—----------------Maryam, Myself, & SILK: An International Music Journey

SILK is a radio show that Maryam and I host--and in her words, it embodies a sense of “cross-cultural connection,” by taking listeners through the countries of the Silk road (from China to Turkey, moving East to West), using a different genre every week. On a personal level, Maryam noted that she sees the radio show as helping both connect to her family by deeply exploring Iranian music, as well as broadening her horizons and listening to more genres than she would on her own. For the community, Maryam hopes to inspire an appreciation of international music that doesn’t automatically compare it to that of English-speaking countries, but rather celebrates it “having its own thing to offer.” For myself, I am so excited to be working with Maryam on SILK. International music has also been a passion of mine, but, like Maryam, I found myself stuck in certain genres for certain countries: Bossa Nova of Brazil, Jazz of France, Pop for China, Folk for Ireland. I’m looking forward to celebrating the sheer diversity of sound that comes from each of the Silk Road nations, and celebrating them with my awesome co-host! As a final note, Maryam suggests that readers listen to Googoosh, and explore international music on Radiooooo, a “really cool website for niche and weird music.”


5AM Tuesdays—---------------Olivia & Anatomy of a Playlist

Olivia is my stellar roommate, and her radio show is objectively just as stellar. Every week, she plays music that features a part of the body (like the heart) in its lyrics or title, and includes a factoid on the mind-body connection. When talking about her inspiration, Olivia notes her passion for both cognitive science and music: “it means a lot to have a place where I can explore both [passions], and just have a fun little radio show!” When I asked her what her show does for the broader Oberlin community, she said it’s a chance to have some fun and maybe learn a bit about the value of music beyond biology: “it forms civilizations, it determines social relationships. Plus,” she jokes, “I think I have pretty great music taste, so tuning in could be education in and of itself.” As a side note, I had the same exact slot last semester, so now we can rave about the 5AM radio magic together, however much it messes with our sleep schedule! As a final note, Olivia says, “I think college radio is a wonderful and fun experience, and everyone should at least listen to it if they are not involved in some capacity!”


3AM Thursdays—-----------------Natasha & Traveling Songs

Taking the title from one of her favorite songs, Another Travelin’ Song by the Bright Eyes, Natasha’s radio show features just that: traveling songs! When coming up with the idea, Natasha said that she listens to a lot of folk music, and at one point realized that much of the genre spoke about travel. Once she saw it, she “couldn’t unsee it,” and began “seeing it everywhere, not just in folk.” Over Winter Term, Natasha had a Traveling Songs show as well, and found that the questions it raised (what counts as traveling? Is it short- or long-distance? Physical or mental? Is it a song for traveling or about traveling?) deserved more air time--literally. As for her 3AM slot, Natasha says it informs how she goes about her show: “Most people aren’t awake at 3AM, never mind listening to the radio then. I hope if anyone is out there listening, it’s a special space for them.” For Natasha, having a radio show is about being intentional about what she’s listening to and putting out there--hoping to achieve the most creative range she can, to try and surprise the listener at least once.


1PM on Fridays—--------------Marcus, Elke, & Fugue State

I interviewed Marcus and Elke separately for their show Fugue State, which turned out to be quite silly, because, like two perfect co-hosts, their answers were almost perfectly in tune with each other's. Their show’s concept is like a game of song association: one cohost chooses a song, then the other has to come up with an associated one and justify that connection. Then the process repeats! Like Natasha, they did this show in the Wild West that is Winter Term radio, and liked the idea so much, they decided to continue. WOBC plays important roles in both of their lives: for Elke, it’s a “tangible way of sharing music, and,” she laughs, “imposing my music taste on others;” but also a way of maintaining connections, whether that be with her family, listening from home, friends on campus tuning in, or swapping music with Marcus. For Marcus, WOBC is also a way of “subjecting others to my music taste” (I mean, do you see how in sync they are???), but also a fun way to share stories, reminding him of a news show he did in high school. For Marcus and Elke, it’s the medium of the radio, and the connections they can forge with it, that make WOBC so special. 


I hope you get the chance to tune into these shows! If you want to know what makes Oberlin special, it’s the people and the community, and WOBC displays them both oh so well.

Stay cool!

-Daniela <3

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