The Sounds of State-Amor Castro and Frida Ocadiz-Ortega

It was a beautiful November morning in San Diego when I hopped on the trolly to meet Amor Castro and her cohost Frida Ocadiz-Ortega. She told me we could meet in the Communications building so I sat in one of the chairs outside of KCR’s studio waiting for the pair. I unknowingly and embarrassingly stayed in my seat as I saw Frida walk in and sit down. I had only corresponded with Amor so I didn’t know who Frida was or what she looked like. When Amor walked in I also wasn’t sure if it was her until she mentioned that she was looking for me. Such is the extent of online conversation I suppose.

With that mix up resolved, we went to leave and find a quiet space where we could record our interview without bothering anybody’s studies. We walked outside and settled on the area behind the Comm building and sat down. I could already tell that Frida and Amor would give me a good interview. Once we began, it was immediately apparent how friendly the two were and how well they played off each other when speaking. Frida suggested that I get that speech recognition software, which I agreed would clearly help with my transcription process. Ironically, because the pair are so close and comfortable with each other, I think they would have given the software trouble because they kept talking right after each other. Even going so far as to finish each others sentences at some points. It was clear that they certainly had good cohost chemistry.

I’ll let them do the talking for now, so without further ado, here’s our interview:

Cameron: Okay we are recording. I’m with Frida and Amor, and so let’s start off with an easy question. What is your radio slot with KCR?

Amor: It’s entertainment.

Frida: Mondays at nine.

CS: Mondays at nine?

FO: To ten.

CS: Nine to ten? Alright.

FO: Yes.

CS: And I heard you two have your DJ names, what are those?

FO: Mine’s MC Fridalicious.

AC: And I’m DJcito.

CS: Alright cool, so how long have the two of you been with KCR?

AC: Well this is my second semester.

FO: And this is my first semester.

CS: Welcome, welcome to KCR.

FO: Thank you.

CS: It’s good to have you here. And so another easy question, what is the type of music that the two of you normally play?

AC: Hip hop.

FO: Yeah, and top 40 music.

AC: Yeah.

CS: The hot 40? Alright. Do you play hip hop cause normally that’s what you like, or are there any other genres that the two of you, you know, like to play?

AC: We like to play upbeat music. Stuff that kinda gets you moving.

FO: Yeah. We also like Latin music. And we’re thinking about incorporating some of that sometimes.

AC: Yeah. Last show we did two songs that were in Spanish but they’re those party Spanish-

FO: Yeah, like Reggaeton songs.

AC: Yeah, or some Bachata.

CS: Alright cool, well so how come this music is important to you? Why do you like to play hip hop and this other Latin music? Do you have a personal kinda connection to it?

AC: Yes I do. Growing up I was the youngest girl, and I have two older brothers and they always listened to hip hop. So I kinda grew up with this mixture of, I dunno, Tupac, Biggie, Jay Z, Common Sense, Nas, you know all the old school hip hop songs out there. And then also some reggae and then the Spanish of course cause I’m Hispanic so, so that’s kind of like how I grew up, with all that music, so that’s what I like to play. We play throw backs too, so it’s kinda like the feel good music. So sometimes when you’re out and you hear a song and you’re like “oh my god, this reminds me of high school” or “this reminds me of this one time when I turned seventeen” or something you know?

FO: And we’re students so we understand that students are not just students but they have families and friends, personal lives, and work and so our show really is meant to be upbeat and just relaxed. Something that somebody can just listen to while doing homework or on their car ride home. Something relaxing and fun, and so that’s why we like to play upbeat music.

CS: That’s awesome. You’ve got a theme behind it.

FO: Yeah.

AC: Yeah and we do mention some school stuff, but it’s mainly kinda like, you know, after school and you kinda wanna tune out a little bit and not think about so much about school and all that. We do mention like “oh my god midterms are coming” or “finals are coming” but we also say “let’s enjoy some music and just kinda chill for a little bit.”

CS: That’s awesome, you got a whole idea behind your DJ block, that’s sweet. So how did the two of you become cohosts? How did you partner up?

FO: Well we’re actually soulmates—just kidding.

AC: (Laughs)

FO: But we’re both Communications majors and we met in a class. 300?

AC: Yeah Comm 300 or something.

FO: Yeah or 350, and we’re like “oh my gosh” and we just hit it off. We became friends fast.

AC: And then, I don’t know how, I think you have a friend that was in KCR and I was like “what’s that?” and you were like “there’s a radio show here.”

FO: Oh yeah.

AC: And I got really interested and we got information from there. And I actually got the chance to DJ last semester so I told her about it and she-

FO: Yeah I blew her off. I was like “yeah” but I didn’t pursue it and she ended up just doing it by herself. But now I’m doing it with her and I’m like “man I should’ve done this last semester, it’s so much fun.”

AC: It’s so much fun.

FO: So much fun.

CS: That’s funny how things work out.

FO: That’s why I think our radio name should be the Comm Comms, but DJcita still is kind of-

AC: Iffy about it.

FO: Iffy about it.

AC: But it’s a good one.

FO: Like you know the can can and then pom poms, I dunno.

AC: (Laughs)

CS: Yeah (laughs) that’s funny. So as cohosts would you say that you two have good chemistry on air?

FO: Definitely.

AC: Yeah. Cause we talk how we would talk off air.

FO: Yeah, and off air we have good—we just flow naturally, play off each other’s emotions and what we say, and it’s just positive vibes.

CS: That’s awesome. So is there anything—this is sort of another bit out there question—is there anything that the two of you have been listening to lately or just obsessing about, just a great song or great artist?

(FO and AC pause and laugh)

CS: You don’t need to be shy about it.

AC: I’m trying to think.

FO: I dunno. My favorite songs right now on the radio are 2 On by Tina Shay—Tinay Shay-

AC: Tinashe!

FO: Tinashe! Her name is so-

AC: Different.

FO: Yeah different.

AC: Okay I love that song. I’m obsessed with that.

FO: Yeah and then Don’t Tell Them and then the-

AC: The “about a week ago

FO: I don’t know, that’s you, that’s you.

AC: Oh (laughs) sorry.

FO: But I also like that song, that “put your knees to your elbows” song.

AC: Oh yeah.

FO: What is that called?

AC: I think Knees Touch Your Elbows or something—

FO: Yeah the one that’s like Turn Down For What, that artist I think, yeah.

AC: Sorry.

FO: I’m not that obsessed with that song.

AC: You like to dance to it.

FO: But Don’t Tell Them and 2 On yeah.

AC: Tinashe.

FO: I like to shake my butt to music so-

AC: She does it in the studio!

FO: Yeah.

AC: And sometimes we put it on Instagram and then we tell people go on her Instagram or she records me dancing.

FO: Yeah! And my Instagram is _Freeduhh.

AC: (Laughs) and mine’s Loveyaswagga.

CS: Alright, I’ll be sure to link that up.

AC: Okay.

FO: Yeah.

CS: Alright so, this has been a great interview so far thanks. You’ve been great. One last question and here’s a fun one, so could you please describe your perfect show on air? Like how would it go?

AC: Yesterday was pretty fun.

FO: Yeah yesterday we had two callers, which is really good.

AC: Or on Monday, sorry.

FO: Yeah, oh yeah on Monday. And so I think my perfect show would be to play the songs that I want, that I like, and for people to call in and, at least five callers to call in.

AC: (Laughs)

FO: And just talk to them about whatever topic we’re talking about that day and just good feedback from callers.

AC: Okay one of my favorite shows was when someone called me from a classroom and said that the whole class was listening to me, and then one of them played the ukulele and they got it on air.

FO: Awww.

AC: And it was really fun and everyone was like “yeah we always listen to you.”

FO: Last semester?

AC: I think so. And they were all happy and I was happy and that’s a perfect show, if everyone’s happy then that’s great.

FO: Yeah.

CS: That’s awesome. I really gotta say that’s really cool to have that kind of feedback.

AC: Yeah it was really cool.

CS: Alright I think we’re gonna wrap it up there. Thanks for being on.

AC: Thank you.

FO: Thanks Cameron.

Alright I lied about linking the Instagrams because I don’t have one so I couldn’t find them, but I’m sure you readers can do it if you’re curious. Also beware, the songs that I linked are rather explicit for the sensitive listener.

I couldn’t stick around and talk to Amor and Frida afterwards because I had to go to work, so we went our own ways after we had a few words. I left the interview feeling good about the state of KCR Radio. I’ve only done this for 3 weeks but I’ve already met some fantastic DJ’s who all are very dedicated to their work. I know what they meant when they said how much fin they had being on air, although personally I’m a bit jealous of the number of callers they get. I’m sure if they were writing this interview, Frida and Amor would tell you and I to remember to relax and have fun every once in a while in our hectic lives here at San Diego State.

That’s does it for this week on Sounds of State. Check in next week for my first interview with a pair of DJ’s from our very own Sports Department!

Thanks for reading.

The Sounds of State-Danielle Stuht

Hello readers! Welcome back to The Sounds of State. This week I interviewed Danielle Stuht, who you may know by her DJ handle Daniellica.

I met up with Danielle last Monday at West Commons. She showed up early and told me to just look for the pink computer and purple hair. Lo and behold I found her in that exact condition. We chatted for a bit at a table, the one closest to the corner by the building. I wish I could have picked her brain even longer, but I was dressed up coming from work and needed to eat before setting off to class. Danielle struck me as a knowledgeable and dedicated DJ, I could tell when interviewing her that she was very involved in her show and her music. I think you readers will have the same impression.

So without further ado, we go to the interview.

Cameron: Alright we are recording. I am here with Danielle. So, Danielle, could you please tell me your radio slot?

Danielle: Yes. So it’s every Tuesday from 2 to 3, and it’s called Local Bands Unleashed and it’s just playing nothing but San Diego bands.

C: Wow that’s really cool, gettin’ all the local action in. How long have you been with KCR?

D: This is my first semester, so I’ve never done any radio before, this is the first time and it’s really really exciting. I love it.

C: Awesome, welcome to KCR. So I guess you answered what you play, but with these San Diego bands is there a specific sphere—musical area—where they, you know, trend towards?

D: So I really try to emphasize all genres of music. I want this to be very equal opportunity. You know it’s just really an outlet for the local musicians to get out and for people to hear their music. But the most love and support I’ve gotten from is from the metal community. They’re really really underrepresented when it comes to music and getting their stuff out, and so I’ve gotten just so much love from them. You know I had an entire metal hour two weeks ago where I had The No Name Gang in studio. And they had a big announcement about their show that was coming up at House of Blues. My show tomorrow I will have the singer from Dark Measure. He’s gonna actually be a guest host with me tomorrow, and they have a new cd that’s coming out Saturday. So I’m really trying to give back the love to the metal community because they’ve just given me so much support and so much love already.

C: Wow that’s awesome. Especially since at KCR we don’t really have a dedicated metal block so yeah they must love getting on your slot.

D: Exactly, I’m kind of hoping that maybe next semester to have nothing but a metal show. You know that way it can hit that genre, that specific audience that doesn’t get to hear that.

C: Alright, cool. So what do you personally like, the music you personally like to play?

D: So I am actually personally more of a rock, pop, reggae—anything like that—I’m a little bit more commercial. You know anything really in the rock genre, that’s how I was raised. My mom was a big metalhead so it’s interesting about the whole metal thing, cause life is pushing me and pulling me in every direction of metal, but it’s just not where my personal love of music is. I more enjoy something I can dance to, you know something I can sing along to and whatnot. But I’m equal opportunity for all music really, other than country, no country.

C: (Laughs)

D: No room for country around here.

C: I know a few people who feel the same way. So this is a bit more of an out there question, but you’ve been very good with answering these so far, so I think you can handle it. Why is music important to you? What made you want to be a DJ? Why is it important in your life?

D: I feel like it’s the one constant in my life. You know I’m a little bit older, almost 28, and you know I’ve seen a lot, I’ve been through a lot, and music is just the one constant that’s always been there. It’s the one thing that hasn’t changed. It’s the one thing that I can really fall back on and know that it will always be there to support me. With radio, I grew up listening to the radio, this was something that I’ve wanted to do my entire life. And you know when people bash on the radio I’m just like “what are you talking about?” This is the first medium was that you were able to hear different kinds of music, and prior to the internet and being able to find these bands. So you know it was radio that paved the way for us to be able to hear different music and different bands and be able to be exposed to it.

C: That’s very true. Yeah I think that’s a great point. I didn’t even think about that before. So is there anything lately that you’ve been listening to in specific that you know is always in your head or obsessing about? Could be a band or an album or just a song.

D: You know The Black Keys are playing in two weeks, and I bought tickets to that six months ago when those tickets went on sale. So it’s just been one of those that I’ve just been waiting and waiting and waiting for those to come up. So I’ve really been listening to a lot of Black Keys, I really love the Arctic Monkeys, Cage the Elephant, all of that kind of music which drives my metalhead boyfriend absolutely insane (laughs).

C: Are there any—I’m gonna put these on the show, what I’m I talking about, the blog—any specific song recommendations you’d have for some fans?

D: Oh man. It’s really about the hits, you know what I mean? And what’s played on the radio. You know I don’t really get too far into that. But if I’m gonna recommend that anyone listens to anything I highly recommend listening to the bands that I’m putting out there. If I could tell anyone to listen to anything please just support local music. Cause without it, without local music, these bands don’t have the opportunity to turn into these huge bands like The Black Keys, like The Arctic Monkeys. You know if you’re not supporting them, then how are they ever gonna make it? How are other people gonna be able to be be exposed to it? You know so that’s my suggestion is, you know these big bands are awesome, totally support them and listen to them, but really give your heart and soul to these local bands, and give them your time and give them your attention, because without it they’re never gonna make it. You know it’s all about the love and whatnot.

C: Alright, yeah. So just pick and choose among a wide variety?

D: Yeah, for instance The No Name Gang, they’re metal but they’re really listenable metal. You know what I mean? They’re not that cookie monster, growl-y, anything. They’ve got two amazing guitarists, a really great drummer, really great bassist, and their singer has such a stage presence that you don’t have to be a metal fan. But you’re totally rocking out to it, getting’ with it, so check out The No Name Gang. They are going to be huge.

C: Alright, cool. So last question, this is a bit of an easy one to finish off on. Can you please describe your perfect show, how it would go?

D: Oh man, my perfect show. Well I would say the most perfect part would be that I don’t have any extra time left over, and that all the songs actually get to play full through. That’s one of the first ones, I’m really really working on, on getting that full hour of you know not cutting any music off or anything. But if I had the perfect show it would just really showcase a different band from a different genre and everyone. You know what I mean? I would like to have a metal band, and then I’d like to have an indie rock band, you know and then a harder band like Gunner Gunner. They’re local and they’re rock but they’re really easily listenable. And they you know maybe some kind of reggae thing like Slightly Stoopid, you know they’ve made it but there are other bands like that out there. So if I could just have one show that was super eclectic, that I think is the ultimate show for me. And that’s what I’m striving for, to make it like that.

C: Okay, thank you for taking the time out of your day to be interviewed for this spot. I’ll have this up soon.

D: Yeah absolutely, thank you.

Danielle and I talked for another minute or two before we had to part. I snapped a photo for the blog than had to be on my way. Remember kids, listen to your local bands. Who knows, maybe someday they’ll make it big and recall your die hard support.

Thanks for reading The Sounds of State.

Halloween movie #tbt (90’s kids only)

With Halloween just around the corner (literally. It’s tomorrow), I thought I thought I’d compile a list of the classic Throwback  movies us 90’s kids used to look forward to watching every Halloween. Some things never change, because I still can’t go through Halloween season without watching at least half of this list. Maybe I’m too festive, or maybe I’m just too attached. The world will never know.

Some of these movies still air every Halloween season on Disney channel, and there are some that scarred me as a child and are now the reason I am afraid of clowns. Regardless, Halloween wouldn’t have been the same without them! Take a look at this #tbt movie list to get into the Halloween spirit.

1. It

Introducing the movie that started my fear of clowns: Steven King’s It. Though I watched this movie recently and I realized how bad the scary effects were, growing up this movie petrified me. I treated the title of this movie like how every one in the Harry Potter world felt about “he who must not be named.” No one could ever utter the words, “it” or “Pennywise” around me without me freaking out. I’ve gotten a little better with that, but it was only a fifteen year recovery process. No big deal.

2. Hocus Pocus

Anyone who was born in the 90’s and has never seen Hocus Pocus is either lying or has had an unfortunate upbringing. In my opinion this is the one of the most iconic Halloween movies EVER. This movie has it all: a teen romance, villainous witches, a suspenseful plot, and Sarah Jessica Parker.

3. The Nightmare Before Christmas

Yet another Disney film has made it on the list. But how could Jack Skellington not get some recognition? This has got to be one of my favorite movies of all time, and a film I watch from Halloween season all the way up to New Year’s. It has that “holiday spirit” element that keeps you counting down the days to Christmas even when it’s October. Sandy Claws may not be a fan, but Nightmare Before Christmas has remained popular with the fans since 1993.

4. Halloweentown

Who doesn’t enjoy the classic Disney Channel movie Halloweentown? I definitely wished I was fortunate enough to have a grandmother who passed down her witch powers down to me like Marnie Piper (I still love you though, Gma!). This is another Disney flick that you just can’t not watch! Halloweentown and Hocus Pocus are definitely a duo worth watching in a Halloween marathon!

5. Saw

Last but not least, a movie that is actually gory compared to the aforementioned flicks: Saw. I know it was released in 2004, but I had to put it on the list! I am a big fan of all movies that are scary, gory, and a psychological thriller. I actually mentioned this on our Tuesday broadcast of What’s Brewing with Anna and Janine (Tuesdays at 11 am). People have this negative view of Jigsaw and think he’s this horrible person, but I think otherwise! He was just trying to teach ungrateful people to appreciate their lives and live them to the fullest. I do admit, he went about it the wrong way, but hey– nobody’s perfect!

 

I hope you enjoyed this list of #tbt Halloween flicks! Happy Halloween everyone– stay safe!