Behind the Mic: June Vincent and Laura Gallardo

June Vincent and Laura Gallardo’s show, “Just Listen,” showcases many talented SDSU musicians every Tuesday night.

The two hosts describe their show as a “journey” that lets listeners get to know the musicians they feature. They ask every artist to play three of their original songs and three songs that have inspired them. They also interview every musician about their music and inspirations.

“Just Listen” has had a variety of guests, such as student rappers, bands, solo artists and acoustic artists. Also, a producer and someone who makes film scores have appeared as well. Laura stated that they are “open to have anyone that makes any type of music,” on their show. I asked them if it was difficult to find musicians every week, and they said that it was hard to get started, at first. However, they receive many recommendations from artists they interview.

This semester, June and Laura implemented a new segment called “Start to Finish,” where they pick albums from different artists and play them in full, in order to get to know more about the selected musicians and their music. Adding this new segment to their show allows June and Laura to explore and familiarize themselves with more artists.

Another change that came along this semester, was June becoming the social media director for KCR. She is in charge of posting daily on KCR’s social media platforms. She said that it is really fun to be involved in management as a second year. June expressed that she likes her position because after she graduates, she hopes to work in the media.

June and Laura told me about their growth since their first year in KCR. They said their first show was a disaster, and described the time when they ran out of content during an interview. Now, they send out a Google Doc and tell their guests exactly what to do before a show. This has made their show more organized and easier to run. They also stay connected to their listeners through their social media accounts.

The duo also told me about how they met, why they joined KCR and the inspiration for “Just Listen.” June and Laura met when they were paired as roommates their freshman year. After hearing about KCR during Freshman Orientation, June decided she wanted to join. So, for the two months leading up to the start of school, she was thinking about ideas for a radio show. Then she heard a show from a college radio station in Canada where two female radio hosts only played local female bands. She thought it was really interesting that they only focused on a certain demographic, and thought it would be cool to focus her show only on student musicians.

After meeting Laura, who had also heard about KCR, they decided to join it together. As for the title of the show, they said that they easily came up with “Just Listen,” because it had the same first letters as their names. They said the best part of having their own show is the ability to be as creative as they want and showcase their personalities on air.

June and Laura have created an entertaining and unique show. It even won Best Music Show their first semester in KCR. Make sure to catch them every Tuesday night from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Also, check out their Instagram page to keep up or contact “Just Listen.”

Check out interviews with your other favorite KCR DJs here.

Behind the Mic: Joseph & Nyssa Gill

Joseph and Nyssa Gill are a dynamic sibling duo that brings lots of energy and fun to KCR’s sound waves. Every Thursday night, their show, “The Gill Gamut,” features the music they love and want to share with others.

Joseph is a fifth year, double majoring in marine biology and rhetorical writing studies, who has been a member of KCR since 2015. At the time, he was part of another show in which he also played his favorite music. After his first co-host graduated, he convinced his little sister, Nyssa who is a second year student double majoring in history and sociology, to join KCR with him. Together, they have been hosting “The Gill Gamut,” since spring semester of 2017. What they like most about having their own music show is that they get a two hour break from school, life and other things, every week. They also think that being siblings adds to their chemistry on air because they can easily have meaningful conversations with one another about any topic.

While speaking to them, they told me about how their show works. The siblings are very structured and detailed with the preparation of their show every week. Nyssa told me that they have a Google Docs form where they compile a list of 26 songs, split between the two of them. She also says that it takes her all week to make her playlist, because they never repeat the same songs. Joseph explained that once a song has been played, it is “off the table.” They also try not to use the same artists more than once per show, so that they play a variety. The songs that they play go with a specific theme. In the past they have had themes such as fierce females, love songs during the week of Valentine’s Day, break up songs the week after Valentine’s Day, road trips songs before Spring Break, pump up songs for Finals Wee, and empowerment songs. Also, they have weeks where they just play songs they want to listen to.

When they are not playing songs, they fill up the rest of the two hours of their show by talking about various topics. They told me that they usually always start off talking about music, and expand from there to talk about something else, once they become engaged in conversation.

Often times, they also have guests on their show. They have had anywhere from avid listeners, to family members, to friends on their show. They also frequently accept song requests through Snapchat, Facebook or text message, in order to stay connected to their listeners.

One of the struggles Joseph and Nyssa face is that nobody understands the meaning of their name. Last semester, they were having a difficult time deciding what the name of their show was going to be, or if they even wanted to have name. If they had a name, Joseph wanted it to have alliteration with their last name, Gill. The night before their first show, as Nyssa was going through a thesaurus trying to find words that started with a G, she came across the word gamut, which means the range of music. So, they decided to name the show “The Gill Gamut,” despite knowing that people will probably not understand the meaning of their name.

You can catch “The Gill Gamut,” every Thursday night from 10 p.m. to 12 a.m.

Behind the Mic: Tisha Mora

Every Friday night from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m., Tisha Mora, a fourth year student majoring in rhetorical writing studies, hosts an entertainment show called “Tish Talk.” I sat down with her this week to get to know her and her show.

Tisha describes her hour as similar to a talk show. Every week, she brings in guests to discuss a certain topic in entertainment: anything from food to the newest blockbuster movie, such as “It.” Even though she likes to keep the topics more light-hearted than serious, her and her guests have touched on subjects like the lack of representation of minorities in the media and the wide representation of women in entertainment.

As this is her second year in KCR, Tisha talked about her show’s evolution. She said that the biggest change from her first show, “Bing-worthy,” to now was learning how to run a show by herself, after realizing that she wanted to approach different topics within entertainment.

Another big change for her was joining KCR management and becoming Promotions Director. As Promotions Director, Tisha connects the station with outside venues, such as the House of Blues and the Observatory in North Park, to provide KCR with giveaway tickets and to give members the opportunity to cover events.

After speaking about her show’s dynamic, Tisha told me about the title and logo of her show. The inspiration for the name came from the Netflix series, “Jessica Jones,” in which one of the characters, Trish, has a radio show named “Trish Talk.” As for the logo of the show, at first glance, it just looks like a blue circle with a star. However, she told me that it is a reference to a nickname her friend gave her in high school that she says she has come to embrace. They were comparing each other to fruit, and if you look at the logo as a whole, you’ll be able to make out the shape of a tiny blue fruit. She told me that her friends decided to call her a blueberry, because it’s the smallest fruit they know of and she was the smallest friend.

Outside of KCR, Tisha works in the National Guard and runs the social media for Barnes and Noble.

You can catch Tisha Mora’s show “Tish Talk,” on Friday nights from  8 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Behind the Mic: Matt Hoffman & Anthony Reclusado

Matt Hoffman and Anthony Reclusado pose in the Student Union at SDSU.

When people hear “the face of KCR,” they might think of KCR’s logo or the events KCR takes part in or puts on. But, members of KCR, some who have been around for years, probably think of General Manager Matt Hoffman and Programming Director Anthony Reclusado as the face of the organization. Members of KCR for nearly four years now, the roommates have held their management positions for half of that time and have greatly contributed to the radio station. I caught up with Matt and Anthony before their graduation for the last Behind the Mic of the spring semester. 

The pair made their debut on KCR in spring 2014 with “Delay of Game,” a show they have had on-air up to their final days as seniors. Anthony told me that during the fall semester of 2013, they contributed to “Aztec Circle,” a group sports show on KCR, because the two joined halfway through the semester and weren’t given their own time on-air.

Since beginning “Delay of Game,” Anthony explained that they have localized their sports coverage to San Diego. Listeners would have heard nearly an hour of Padres, Chargers, Gulls and Aztecs coverage every week. Matt described a headline segment, “Quick Shots,” that concluded each show. During this short period, Matt and Anthony would bring up national sports headlines and break them down, giving their opinions.

Prior to the move, each show began with the Chargers, with Aztec Football quickly following. Game recaps, injury reports and other player news all made up the usual discussions.

“We shoot for quality and consistency — that’s why the show is still here seven semesters later,” Matt explained. Anthony added that dedication made their show stand out, with Matt giving an example of a basketball ticket giveaway they conducted on-air a few years ago, requiring the two to wake up at 4 a.m. to stand in line for the tickets.

Matt and Anthony holding awards in the KCR studio.

KCR has won an array of awards while Matt and Anthony have served on management. Photo by Amir Badeanlo.

Matt has served as General Manager of KCR for two years, and prior to that (as a sophomore) he was Program Director. According to Matt, he spent the summer between management positions renovating the KCR studio. He collaborated with iHeartMedia to construct the current studio, which has professional equipment and safer furniture. “It all helps with the professionalism,” Anthony added.

The following summer, Matt worked to open a second studio: the production studio in the basement of EBA.

The culture of KCR has totally changed since their freshman year, according to both Anthony and Matt. “As soon as that studio changed, everything else changed,” added Anthony.

“It’s a lot bigger than it probably has ever been,” said Matt, referencing the sheer size of KCR’s current membership.

Matt described how amazing it is to see members of KCR, past and present, earn internships and obtain positions in the media industry, noting that KCR was the starting point for many. Getting people interested in radio has been one of Matt’s responsibilities. He mentioned current Production Director at KCR, Jack Sellas, as an example. Jack became an active member, obtained a management position and is now looking at radio as a potential career.

“KCR will always be a part of my life,” said Anthony.

Matt currently works as a news assistant at KPBS, where he also covers on-air stories. Additionally, Matt is a writer and producer for the morning shows at NBC 7 San Diego. After his upcoming graduation in May, Matt plans on working full-time at NBC.

Anthony has worked with Matt as Program Director for two years. During his senior year, Anthony served as Sports Editor for The Daily Aztec. He currently interns at FOX 5 San Diego, and will move back to the Bay Area after graduation to continue his media career. 

Featured Image: Matt Hoffman and Anthony Reclusado are preparing for their graduation in May and departure from KCR. Photo by Amir Badeanlo.