Behind the Mic: Christian Le

Christian Le, a music DJ at KCR, begins his playlist for the night in the studio.

Every Wednesday night at 10, Christian Le, a junior at SDSU, can be found in the KCR studio starting his show, “All Earz on Le.” I sat down to interview Christian and find out who was behind the mic. In his second semester with KCR, Christian is continuing his music-oriented show, playing a mix of 90’s and modern rap and R&B. Christian said that the show’s title is a play on 2Pac’s “All Eyez on Me,” which is right in line with his music taste.

According to Christian, last semester’s show was heavily focused on music, but later in the semester he brought in some guests to be on air. For the spring, Christian said he is “pretty much going all out” with his show by having more guests and compiling interviews. “I want to do more variety,” Christian added. He wants to be more comedic and more conversational.

Christian builds a new playlist for his show every week. Being born in the later half of the 90’s, Christian said that he wasn’t able to fully appreciate the legends 2Pac or Biggie Smalls, although both make appearances in his playlists. Modern rap finds its way onto Christian’s playlists too, through giants such as Kendrick Lamar.

When I asked Christian about any inspirations he had for his show, he mentioned the podcast “The Handsome Rambler,” by Hannibal Buress. Christian pointed out that he hopes to replicate a segment from Hannibal’s podcast, in which he invites his Tinder matches onto the show. With humor being a focal point for “All Earz on Le,” a new Tinder segment would bring a modern comedic twist to the show.

As the sole host of his show, Christian loves the creative freedom he has. Christian told me that early in the fall semester, his co-host left him, forcing him to adapt to running the show by himself, a challenge he seemed to be thankful for.

I asked Christian to describe the biggest challenge he has faced in relation to his show. Being that the show is rap and R&B, Christian said ensuring all his music is clean proves to be the biggest hurdle. KCR avoids explicit lyrics, a policy that all DJ’s abide by.

Looking toward the future, Christian said that “it would be nice [to be] nominated for something,” when discussing next year’s Intercollegiate Broadcast System awards.

You can listen to Christian Le on his show, “All Earz on Le,” every Wednesday at 10 P.M. on KCR College Radio.

In addition, you can find your favorite DJs on our KCR schedule.

Featured Image: Christian Le, a marketing major at SDSU, finds a balance between classic and modern rap and R&B. Photo by Sumner Shorey.

The Ultimate Lifting List

It’s everyone’s favorite time of the year…midterms! Sike. It’s a miserable, dreary time. Long nights of studying and binge eating weird foods because you don’t have time to grocery shop (Not speaking out of personal experience or anything…). Anyways, everyone has their form of stress relief, whether it be watching Netflix or venting to a close friend. My stress relief drug of choice is hitting the gym. No gym trip is complete without a pair of headphones on full volume.

This playlist is 58 minutes in length, the maximum time that my lifting workouts ever last. Whatever workout regimen you follow, it’s always good to have some motivating music on in the background.

  1. A** Back Home- Secrets

This is a screamo remake of a Gym Class Heroes Song. It may surprise you how much a little bit of screaming can pump you up. This is the perfect song to start off your workout.

  1. Tom Ford- Jay-Z
  2. No Mediocre- T.I., Iggy Azalea
  3. You See Me- Childish Gambino
  4. Switch Lanes- Tyga, The Game

You may recognize the name Tyga because he has a minor role on a majorly popular reality television show. His talent is minimal, in all aspects, but this song is one of the few good ones.

  1. Headband- B.o.B, 2 Chainz

I am not going to claim that I have the credibility to make this statement, but this is a true hip-hop gold mine of a song.

  1. I Don’t F**k With You- Big Sean, E-40

Aside from being a great song to squat to, “I Don’t F**k With You” is a great study song. I know that sounds strange, but trust me. This song was the sole reason I got through finals freshman year.

  1. Otis- Jay Z, Kanye West
  2. All Gold Everything- Trinidad James
  3. R.I.P.- Jeezy, 2 Chainz
  4. No Hands- Waka Flocka Flame

This song takes me back to early high school. Pick up those free weights and stare at yourself in the mirror for a second and reflect on that dorky person that you used to be (Again, not talking out of personal experience…). Please don’t be that person that stares too long though.

  1. Gas Pedal- Sage the Gemini
  2. Fancy- Drake

I tend to try and ignore the sexist undertones that are evident in almost every hip hop song, but this one’s a little less sexist and a little more independent women. Although I wouldn’t exactly throw a Drake song in the pile of female empowerment anthems, “Fancy” does make being one of eight girls in the non-cardio part of the gym a little less annoying.

  1. Gold Digger- Kanye West, Jamie Foxx
  2. Ayy Ladies- Travis Porter, Tyga
  3. Lean On- Major Lazer

At the end of your workout it’s always good to slow down the pace a bit to match your plummeting heart rate. “Lean On” does just that, at least in comparison to the other songs on this list.


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No matter your form of midterm stress relief, it’s a guarantee that this playlist will at least provide a little escape from the madness.

You can access my Spotify playlist here! IMG_6546See you at the gym! 😉

Now Listening: Kendrick Lamar

What’s up world and welcome to another week of Now Listening.

You know him, you love him, you sing all the words to m.A.A.d city and Alright, but how do you feel about Kendrick Lamar’s most recent release, untitled unmastered.? Kendrick Lamar is an American rapper out of Compton, California, who started releasing music in 2010. It wasn’t until 2012 with his release good kid, m.A.A.d city, that Kendrick started to gain recognition on a fully national level. At this point in time, Kendrick doesn’t need a last name, he’s won seven Grammy’s and pretty much everyone knows who he is; a frontrunner of the current rap game. But does untitled, unmastered. live up to the expectations of Kendrick’s previous success?

Released on March 4, 2016, untitled unmastered. is a compilation album of unfinished demos from recordings for Lamar’s third album, To Pimp a Butterfly. Containing eight untitled tracks, each one numbered and dated from when the demo was recorded, this raw approach is much different than the other albums released by Kendrick. It proposes a more intimate and personal insight to the process and trials of music that Lamar creates.

Debuting at no.1 of Billboard’s Top 200 in its first week, this album has definitely gained a lot of popularity at a lightning speed. In comparison to Kendrick’s previous releases, this is a small, quiet statement. With not much publicity or talk until the night it was released, it seems as though Kendrick doesn’t feel like he has to prove anything, I mean he’s already at the top of the game.

Differing from his previous projects, one of the most notable effects from these demos is Kendrick Lamar’s ability to manipulate and alter his voice. His tics and vocal morphs is what gives this album a more personal aspect, you can feel what Kendrick is rapping about. This 35 minute album is jam packed with moods, riffs, and all sorts of emotions that the listener can pick up on. In addition, the tracks seem to overlap, making it difficult to tell when one ends and another begins.This aspect helps Lamar’s case of composing these tracks into one cohesive album as a whole. There’s a lot of talking, fillers, and sound checks within these demos that make it very raw and real.

For me, untitled 02 is an initial standout. Lamar addresses and contemplates mortality, pushing rap to go deeper and further than money, booze, and women. Kendrick Lamar continually edges the rap game further and further, proving that he knows no boundaries. If you ask me, untitled unmastered. is a success. The lack of promotion, song titles, even album artwork says more about where Kendrick’s head is at better than any proclamation he could have made. He is solely focused on the music, and forces you to deal with nothing but it in this album. (Someone tell him to teach Kanye a thing or two.)

Listen to a live track from untitled unmastered. here, or find it on Spotify.  ❃

 

The Sounds of State-Michael Maverick

Thursday night before Spring Break I traveled to the KCR studio to meet up with Michael Maverick. It was a couple minutes before 10 o’ clock, which is when he had his show. We said hi and chatted for a short while and once it was time for him to hit the air, Michael let his mix fly and we were able to sit down and have our interview.

Cameron Satterlee: Alright so I’m sitting down in the KCR studio with Michael Maverick, thanks for sitting down with me, man.

Michael Maverick: No problem.

CS: Alright so, easy question for you here, tell us your radio slot.

MM: Ten to eleven p.m. every Thursday.

CS: Every Thursday, and you said earlier Thursday nights are Thirsty Thursday?

MM: Thirsty Thursday mix, that’s right.

CS: Alright, and so what do you play for the Thirsty Thursday mix?

MM: I do Top 40, EDM, try to mix it up a little bit. Every now and then, throw in a little of that Throwback Thursday. Just mix it up, keep it fresh.

CS: And so how long have you been with KCR?

MM: I was here last semester and now this semester so I’m going for one year, two semesters.

CS: Alright cool. Well welcome, it’s always great to have I guess sort of new DJ’s. You’ve had a semester under your belt so you know all the trick so far.

MM: Yeah.

CS: So I guess, it’s sort of popular music with the top 40, but with the throwbacks and the electronic music, EDM, you got this whole kinda scene behind that. What makes you want to play music from this group of genres?

MM: Sort of mixing it up?

CS: Yeah.

MM: It’s just this evolution of music. Electronic music is really going into the mainstream. Not in a bad way, but in a way that it’s a mixture. A lot of hip hop is picking up EDM and a lot of EDM is picking up hip hop and it’s kinda fusing. So it’s only right to pay due diligence and say “okay they comes with this background and hip hop comes with this background” so when you play it you know what’s going on.

CS: Oh yeah totally. I think you hit the nail right on the head there. EDM and hip hop are fusing to form this really popular music right now. But with your throwbacks, what do you play for that? Any other genres?

MM: I can go from R&B to super old 80’s roller blading songs like that kinda old. I don’t think I would go beyond the 80’s. Yeah 80’s or 90’s.

CS: Yeah so you’re basically sticking to the roots of EDM and hip hop.

MM: Yeah.

CS: Well that’s a good theme I guess.

MM: Foundation.

CS: Yeah foundation for the current music, you’re right. So this is a more out there question, so I want to know why this music is important to you. Why did you get into it? Why do you think “this is the music I need to play on KCR?”

MM: It’s just how I grew up. My community, every day, friends, family. Hip hop is a culture and it is the culture that embraced me, you know? And EDM is kinda just barely getting into it cause at the club you could only play hip hop so much. You gotta play the EDM too, you gotta dance. So it’s kinda that give and take of both genres. But as for getting into it, it’s just environment. Environment and content, how back in the day it was really about having a voice and rap music did that and allowed people to express themselves when they didn’t have that opportunity to do so and that’s what made it attractive.

CS: Alright cool, well thanks that was a great answer. So as a Top 40, EDM, rap guy, you got your ear to the ground. You know what’s hot right now, I guess more than most of the people I interview. So what is the big hot song right now that you’ve been just really wanting to play lately?

MM: There is this song that I’m pretty sure is gonna be a summer hit. The song is by Eric Bellinger and I think it’s called Focused On You. It’s a sample of an older song and it’s got Two Chainz on it. And I think in the summer if it get a lot of play on the radio it’s gonna be a hit.

CS: It’s gonna be a big club party jam or something?

MM: Yeah yeah.

CS: Alright, so last question. I always like to end on this one, it’s a fun one. So you’ve got your one hour of Thirsty Thursday, how would your perfect show go?

MM: My perfect show. Mix it all up. If I could get a good amount of hip hop, a good amount of EDM, and a good amount of throwback and rap, and fresh songs that just came out and kinda put them out there and make someone say “hey I never heard that song before and I like it” then I did a good job.

CS: A little old, a little new, but all good?

MM: But all good.

CS: Alright, well thanks, man.

MM: Yeah.

And with that I left Michael to do his show. It’s great to hear our DJ’s be so passionate about the music they love, for Michael it goes back to his roots. He’s jamming out past dark on Thirsty Thursday, like a true college radio DJ. Make sure to tune in to his show, 10-11 p.m. only on KCR Radio, the Sound of State.