Neighborhood Jams: KCR College Radio

This is it everyone – my last and final post for KCR College Radio. I am officially graduating from San Diego State University TODAY, but don’t you worry, I will be walking in the graduation ceremony in May. This post is completely dedicated to my true love because without this drive and passion, I wouldn’t know who I am today.  This one is for you, KCR.

I first joined KCR College Radio in August of 2015 and the next month I became the Music Submissions Director.  I still remember the day that I found out I was selected – it was more than just a director position. It was a major stepping stone into my future career in radio. In February of 2016 we went to New York City and accepted the award from Intercollegiate Broadcasting System for Best Station in the Nation. I personally represented the station as I received the award for Best Blog as well.  Together are two memories that I will hold dear forever. The twenty KCR representatives filled the room with Aztec cheer, and I couldn’t have been more proud to be an Aztec and a KCR director.

In the summer of 2016 I was able to personally represent KCR College Radio at the yearly Vans Warped Tour where I was able to be centimeters away from headlining bands and musicians.  It was a teenage dream that finally came true – all because of KCR. I might have been dehydrated, sunburned, and exhausted at the end of the day, but given the opportunity I would snatch it up again. Below are some of my personal photographs from Vans Warped Tour:


State Champs


We the Kings


Mayday Parade



In the fall of 2016 I unexpectedly found out that I could graduate an entire semester earlier than planned, and my first thought was KCR. I didn’t want to leave the studio.  I didn’t want to leave the dream team (aka management). I was not ready to hang up my headphones. I was able to succeed this past semester because of the support system at KCR College Radio. I am the person I am today because of KCR College Radio. It is way more than a student-runned organization, it is home.

I want to give a huge thank you to General Manager, Matt Hoffman for believing in me and taking a chance on me.  I was always on my feet and ready to help out in anyway possible.  You constantly believed that I could do more, and you gave me confidence in pursuing my dream.  Another huge thank you to Social Media Director, Kelsey Donahue for being my first KCR friend and the best co-host ever.  Together we were able to discuss Blink-182 drama and Buzzfeed quizzes early in the morning – it was a pure dream come true.  Lastly a shout out to KCR Management for the great memories.  The endless meetings to better the best station in the nation; the constant talk of improving every aspect possible; I loved it, and I am going to miss it. Thank you, team, for believing in me and being a wonderful support system.

I love you, KCR College Radio. When I think back to my days at San Diego State University I will be instantly reminded of my time in the studio. I have high, HIGH hopes of working in radio in the near future, but I will always remember my first show here. Good luck out there, KCR, and I wish you the best at the IBS Awards next March. Go win some gold microphones, Aztecs!


-Brianna Avalos

A Week of Miracles

miracle week

Aztec Dance Marathon is one of hundreds of Children’s Miracle Network Dance Marathon events that take place across the country (and Canada). Each of these dance marathon efforts benefit a local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, this one being Rady Children’s of San Diego. The year long initiative comes to fruition at the overnight dance marathon where participants or,”dancers” are on their feet for 15 hours in honor of and celebration for the kids who cannot. They have raised over $120,000 for the hospital in just two years on campus, making them the highest fundraising philanthropic organization at SDSU.

miracle week

SDSU’s Aztec Dance Marathon celebrates a week of astonishing achievements as the highest fundraising philanthropic organization on campus

While the third annual official event is scheduled for February 2017, this week offered a series of events on campus promoting their mission, values, purpose, and encouraging students to join the movement. Miracle Week can be closely compared to a homecoming week of sorts. It was presented as a time to unify students under one cause. The week began with an inspiration day where members of ADM wore and distributed gold ribbons to celebrate awareness for childhood illness. With an initial goal of registering 250 new dancers and raising $10,000 throughout the entire week, they astonished the campus as the organization went above and beyond all expectations. On recruitment day the group managed to oversee over 1,000 participants who created an online fundraising page, pledging their commitment to collect funds and participate in the event this spring. Education day was a time to really get down to the core of dance marathon and the patients it serves. Members of the organization hosted an event in the Aztec Student Union with giveaways, music, and an opportunity for anyone interested to learn more information.

miracle week thermometer

This is the final thermometer posted from the Aztec Dance Marathon social media pages, although I’m sure a new total will be revealed at the end of the 24 hour mark.

With the fourth day of Miracle Week: Fundraising Day rapidly approaching, fundraising chair Mackenzie Kahl was nervous about maintaining the momentum of the week throughout this “Push Day.” She confessed that the burden of reaching such an ambitious goal of “Five K in One Day” was weighing heavily on her, but she had faith in her team and the dancers they recruited. In one day alone…and really just about 12 hours, the organization raised an overwhelming $13,000. These thermometer posts were revealed throughout the day, keeping followers updated on the stance of their efforts. The overall goal of dance marathon is $101,000 and the final fundraising total will be revealed in the final hour of the overnight event on the morning of February 25th. There is still another day left in Miracle Week, focused on offering recognition and appreciation to registered dancers and everyone who has contributed to the cause. For more information about Aztec Dance Marathon, or if you want to contribute to the cause, feel free to visit their Facebook page or any of their other social media accounts.

Neighborhood Jams: Copeland

You know those days when you wake up and the sense of autumn is rising just as that early sun is? So you put on your fluffy socks, sip on a warm holiday-themed coffee, and walk outside to feel the crisp morning air* – all of these early morning activities are perfectly matched with this week’s Neighborhood Jam band.

Copeland was formed in 2001 in Lakeland, Florida.  The band currently consists of Aaron Marsh, Bryan Lawrenson, and Stephen Laurenson.  If you had to label their music it would be a combination of Death Cab for Cutie and Young the Giant. Copeland’s songs are slow and powerful accompanied with beautiful string melodies and easygoing guitar riffs. My personal favorite song is I Can Make You Feel Young Again from their latest album Ixora Twin.  I love the solo bass in the beginning, and Marsh’s vocals are deep and soothing.  I also really enjoy the music video that is post below.  The visuals are beautiful from the early morning sunrise, to the underwater scenes with the mermaid. Yes, the mermaid – but trust me, it’s not corny. It actually leaves you with a combination of feelings at the end.

Copeland was recently in San Diego on Wednesday, November 16th, and they played a show at the Irenic with special guest Rae Cassidy for an intimate show with a nearly sold out crowd.  The tour is called “Now | Then” and it is in celebration of playing music for over 13 years. In order to celebrate properly they invited a live string section to join their performance of their songs to the fullest potential.  The band also celebrated by playing songs from all of their albums ranging from their first album Beneath Medicine Tree (2003), to my personal favorite album Eat, Sleep, Repeat (2006), to their latest album from last year Ixora Twin.  This tour is one for the long-time fans, and Copeland is absolutely killin’ it right now.  Fans love hearing singles from all of their favorite albums.

Be sure to give them a listen and definitely check out the music video above.  And give them a like on their Facebook page so you can stay in the know with their current tour.


*Yes, I know we live in San Diego, and there is a new heatwave every week. Instead of socks we wear flip flops; instead of hot coffee it’s always iced.  But let’s pretend it’s actually the middle of November and the leaves are changing colors.




Neighborhood Jams: Temple of the Dog

It’s been a quick minute KCR readers, but Neighborhood Jams is back for another great blog post.  I am super excited to review this band – they are the founding fathers of grunge in the 90’s along with all the plaid, combat boots, long hair, and deep meaningful lyrics.  Let’s get into it…

Temple of the Dog is an American rock band formed in the great year of 1990 in Seattle, Washington.  Chris Cornell is the mastermind behind this band, and he started it up in honor of his late friend and roommate Andrew Wood, lead singer of the then up and coming band Mother Love Bone. Cornell joined forces with some Pearl Jam members including Stone Gossard on guitar, Jeff Ament on bass, Mike McCready on lead guitar, and lastly Matt Cameron on drums.  Pearl Jam’s lead singer Eddie Vedder was Cornell’s backup vocals on their one single. Interesting fact, Gossard and Ament were members of Wood’s band Mother Love Bone – so Temple of the Dog was a true tribute to Wood’s life and passion of grunge rock ‘n roll.

In the months of November and December of 1990 Temple of the Dog recorded their first and only album together.  Their self-titled album was recognized by the underground crowd and critics, but it never made it to the tops of the charts – at least not until 1992 when Pearl Jam got their big break. Fans loved the music because it showed a different side of grunge rock ‘n roll than they were used to. Songs were slower and deeper. From the album Temple of the Dog the biggest recognizable song was definitely Hunger Strike. It is almost hauntingly beautiful how well Cornell and Vedder’s vocals sync up with one another.

Even though the band only had one album before continuing their musical journey with Pearl Jam and Soundgarden they still opened for lots of amazing bands including Alice in Chains and playing at secret shows all over Seattle. From there the songs have been covered by Pearl Jam endlessly, and Cornell even started a solo career where he, too, covered his own songs.

Now, 25 years later Temple of the Dog is doing something they have never done before – go on an actual tour. In this reunion tour they only scheduled to visit five different cities for this 8-night tour. Cities include Philadelphia, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and their hometown Seattle. Of course tickets sold out within minutes of being released. All of the bands listed above, especially Temple of the Dog, all have such a giant impact on what the music scene was like in the early 90’s in Seattle. They are the reason rock ‘n roll is what it is today so please give them all a listen. It’s absolutely amazing how all of their stories and careers intertwine with one another.