Wednesday, May 21, 2014


May 16, 2014
Georgia State University President Mark P. Becker P.O. Box 3999 Atlanta, GA 30302-3999

Dear President Becker,

We, the alumni of WRAS Album 88 are writing to express our opposition to the deal reached between Georgia Public Broadcasting (“GPB”) and Georgia State University (“GSU”) over the daytime broadcasting rights for WRAS Atlanta 88.5 FM (“WRAS”). We write to explain why this deal has led us to announce today that we are withdrawing our support, financial and otherwise, from the university. While we recognize that the university administration feels that this deal represents the best interests of the students currently attending GSU and stands to create new opportunities for students in media, the alumni firmly believe this deal undermines the station’s legitimacy for the following reasons:

The impact Album 88 makes on students’ careers: As WRAS alumni, many of us owe our careers to the lessons learned and the networks developed while volunteering at the station, and all of us learned important life lessons at the station that serve us to this day. The current model adds significantly more value for the tuition dollar than any opportunity that could be provided by GPB. WRAS in its current format represents a unique learning and training experience, and there is no way to replace hours on the board and the responsibility involved in managing airwaves 24/7. While a partnership with GPB may prove beneficial for communications students and for interns, it should not be achieved by re-organizing WRAS - a student-run station that is very beneficial for communication, music, business, and students of many other majors. Opportunities can be created for film and communications majors without having to change the makeup of Album 88’s student-run radio.

The impact Album 88 makes on industries: The station's ability to influence the music industry and broadcasting industry - by educating students and shaping their career paths through hands-on experience - is directly tied to the station’s broadcasting power and reach. By restricting students’ airtime to nighttime only, you eliminate all these opportunities for future students. There is no real comparison between the experience gained during nightshift broadcasting and a secondary online channel suggested, and that provided by the power Album 88 has today as a terrestrial radio station (that reaches the entire state of Georgia as well as parts of South Carolina, Tennessee and Alabama).
The impact Album 88 makes on the local community: Album 88 has a positive influence on the health of the music industry in Atlanta. As an incubator of new music, it exposes new trends and plays deep cuts from albums, providing listeners with a unique music experience they can’t get elsewhere. Local clubs and music retailers have successfully operated for decades nurtured by this unique broadcasting experience. By contrast, the GPB talk radio format is geared toward older demographics in a market already saturated by talk radio stations. Moreover, the university has never before measured Album 88 by its listenership volume, nor has it attempted to influence student programming in a manner that can increase ratings – an idea that we believe the students may be open to exploring should this be a priority for the administration.

Objection to the details of the deal and the way in which it was reached: The administration left the primary stakeholders (GSU students and WRAS staff and management) in the dark during months of negotiations with GPB. The administration never outlined any concerns about formatting and never engaged the students in an attempt to address any concerns. The community, whom WRAS has a duty to serve, was also left out of the conversation.

Historically, these types of partnerships have not been in the long term interests of students or institutions, as seen in several other schools in recent years. One example is Sacramento State, whose students were promised great opportunities to work with NPR in creating and curating programing, and instead have seen their roles reduced to answering calls during pledge drives.

In addition, the contract as it stands does not represent the institutions’ best interests. For example, as the FCC license holder of WRAS, GSU is left responsible for all damages incurred by an FCC complaint. There are many such complaints of obscenity against NPR and NPR affiliates. Any complaint against the station would be the responsibility of GSU regardless of the time of day or the group providing content. This shows that this deal was reached without ample consideration for the possible negative financial impacts to the university.

Our expectation from the GSU administration: We expect the GSU administration to prioritize and steward the students towards greater opportunities. We fail to see how limiting a student-run media outlet in favor of a third party media outlet meets the goals of the university. It is also a very worrisome strategy that communicates to the students that none of their media is actually free. To reach a decision without input from the students the way you did - and with the timing you chose - displays total disregard for the students, the university as a whole, and indeed the entire GSU Alumni which for decades has regarded WRAS as a beacon for the university’s brand.

Uplifting students and rising to the occasion: The administration is faced with a golden opportunity: To empower GSU students to rise to the occasion and face the format’s challenges on their own. By doing so, students will develop new skills and learn new lessons in a way that re-enforces WRAS’s role in the community and reaffirms its four-decade-long legacy. For example, if the administration takes issue with the funding of the station, allow students to administer their own pledge drives and benefits and learn how to obtain sponsorships and fund a portion of the operation. If the administration takes issue with listenership levels, the alumni are ready to form an advisory committee and work with student management to re-shape programming in a manner that will lift listenership significantly within a year, while also developing new careers for students in the process. If the administration seeks to establish new opportunities for film and communication majors, the university’s alumni can work with additional local partners (and there are several obvious candidates for this in Atlanta) to foster strategic relationships that will yield very strong value-add, all without having to compromise any student-run media. Let us work together towards solutions instead of fostering divisiveness.

Conclusion: For all of these reasons, we believe that there is merit in asking GPB to re-negotiate the details of the agreement, with student involvement in the process. We believe that while GPB may play an important role as a partner of GSU, its involvement at WRAS must be tempered with the need to prioritize the students’ control of the airwaves 24/7 and the students’ self-determination with respect to any hours of programming that may be allocated periodically to GPB as a partner. Since the administration has not been receptive to the demand by the student body and community at large for the cancellation of the agreement, we The Alumni pledge, from this day forward, to withdraw all of our financial support for GSU as alumni, until such time that the administration completely and irrevocably terminates its contract with GPB with respect to any WRAS interference whatsoever. We also expect no further interference with any student media moving forward. We vow to make it our mission to solicit all GSU alumni to take the same position. We thank you for your consideration and look forward to one day being beneficiaries of this university once more.

WRAS Alumni:

Shachar Oren
CEO, Neurotic Media
BS 1995

Erich Hoberg
President / CEO iEdit Creative
BA 1999

Connie Prichard Aylor
BS 1992. MPA 1996

Daniel E Moll
Sr Engineer - Home Depot SSC
BA 1998

Victoria Rey
Education Coordinator- The Metropolitan Opera
BMU 2011

Sara Malec
Postdoctoral Fellow, University of the Pacific PhD 2013

Zachary Lancaster
Address Data Specialist, Spatial Focus Inc.
BS, Geology 2011

Bryan Simmons
Owner / Media Production Specialist Stand-By Production Works
BA Journalism 1993

Eve Payor
Host/Producer at WABE Atlanta 1999-2002 A&R at TKG Music Music Teacher at The Clinton Global Initiative
BIS 1998 Stephen Stubbs Marketing Director at St. Joseph Abbey MA 1994

Marvin Brown
President of August a Télécom and Data Class of 1979

Kimberly Drobes
Senior Producer, "The Clark Howard Show" WestwoodOne /WSB/Cox Media Group
GSU class of '96 Sonya Bowman DJ in 1996

Dan Lynn
BS Communications 1982 Angella Barnes BBA, 2007

Shawn R. Nolan
Attorney at Jonathan E. Leonard PC GSU College of Law J.D. 2008

Matt Steadman
Senior Producer/Program Director, AM 1690, The Voice of the Arts
BA Journalism 2008

Kevin Howard
Morning Show Host. Clear Channel Media.
WRAS from Nov'91 to Feb. '94.

Hibaq Dougsiyeh
WRAS 2011-2013. PSA Director 2012-2013. Assistant Program Director (2013).
BA Journalism GSU Class of 2013 Andrew Johnson
BA, 2010 Suzanne Huff - CNN Studio Operator
BA Film & Video/Journalism 2009

Bob Carter
WRAS ‘92-95
BS Psychology 1995 Southeast Market Media Anchor, Total Traffic & Weather Network CEO, Carter Creative Services

Jessie White
WRAS 2003-2006
BA - Communications/PR

Kim Curley Reynolds
WRAS Pogram Director 1988-1991
BS in Communications 1992

Matthew Kehrli
Turner Network Television WRAS 1997 - 2000
BA - Communications/Journalism 

Katie Wood
WRAS 1975-77
BS in Communications 1977, JD 1999

Julie Ann Solomon
WRAS 1996-97, Co-founder of Nitrate 88
Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies 1997

Cliff Smith
GSU 1985 BS Communications WRAS 1980-83-Public Affairs
Director and Host of "Infinite Vibes" Former host of Jazz Flavours on WQXI-94.1 FM

Marc Crifasi
WRAS 2000-2005 - Music Director and Promotions Director Founder of The Quintessential College Show
BA Broadcast Journalism 2005
Video Tech for Touring Music Acts Joel Nash Claudia Fernandez John Darwin Kurc 1987
Concert Photographer at and

Leslie-Anne McAllister
GSU 1997
BA Comm & Psychology CEO 2 Degrees Marketing

Jordan Smith
WRAS 2000-2005
BS in Computer Science Beau Johnson MA English WRAS 2001-2006 Instructional Designer at AT&T

Chris Hermecz
Software Developer Turner Broadcasting System BBA 2012

Jez de Wolff
Sr. Marketing Manager, Adult Swim/Cartoon Network @ Turner Broadcasting.
BS 2001

Dan Lynn
Sales Mgr. Broadcast - ACS Solutions

Gail Harris
WRAS 1976-1993, GPB 1985-1988, WABE 1990-2003. Owner, Gail Harris Counseling, LLC. BA Spanish 1983, MS Community Counseling 1996

Millie De Chirico
Manager, Programming, Turner Classic Movies
WRAS member 1997-2002, GM 2001-2002

Jeff Clark
Publisher/Editor, Stomp and Stammer Magazine.
WRAS 1987-92 (MD 90-92)

Michael Overstreet
WRAS Program Director 1998-1999

Paul Mazurkiewicz
Owner, The Little Gym of Snellville
General Manager 1985-86 / Program Director 1984-85 / Announcer 1981-87

Alex Chaudhry
WRAS Member 2007-2009, Assistant Program Director 2008-2009
BS Criminal Justice 2009

Allison Sudholt
Communications Coordinator at WorkingBuildings \ DJ 2008-2011, APD 2010-2011 

Kimberly Drobes
Senior Producer "The Clark Howard Show" /1997-present
WRAS 1992-1996 DJ and Producer/ Co-Host The Georgia Music Show

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Ever-Loving Astral Etheric Weekend For Dennis Palmer

Friday, July 27, 2012

"Five More Minutes" b​/​w "Sally" by Hubcap City (From Belgium)

I created a Bandcamp page for Ponce de Leon Records, the label I started back in 2006. The page is still a work in progress, but I've loaded the first 7" I released — Hubcap City (From Belgium)'s "Five More Minutes" b/w "Sally." HC (FB) was Bile Aft, Kat H., Matthew Proctor, Will Fratesi. Recorded by 1 Mic Records. Knob twisting by Neil Fried at RRE. Mastering by Chris Griffin at Griffin Mastering. Photo by Miss L.P. Clarke. “Five More Minutes” recorded live at Push Push Theatre. "Sally" was recorded live in Sylvester Cemetery in East Atlanta.

Released May 1, 2006.

More posts coming soon.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Kilo Ali: An Atlanta wild card with no regrets

For much of the early to mid-’90s, Atlanta bass and booty music legend Kilo Ali was the most notable rapper to represent Atlanta. He released his debut album, America Has a Problem Cocaine in 1990, when he was just 17 years old, instantly becoming known as the first wild card of the Atlanta hip-hop scene. He was also one of the first rappers to come from Bankhead, long before “the Bankhead Bounce” ruled the radio. Following the highs of such songs as “Baby Baby,” “Love In Ya Mouth,” and “Lost Y’all Mind” — and his most acclaimed album, 1997’s Organized Bass — tapered off, Kilo was convicted of burning down his own house. In October 2005 he was given a stiff 15-year prison term, but in Jan. 2011 he was released after serving six years. Still, it was an awfully long time to be away, especially in the fast-paced music world. Continue reading on Crib Notes...

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Dela feat. Reach - "Go On" (Video Mix)

On a recent trip to Kansas City, MO I made the acquaintance of a rapper named Reach. He's got a new mixtape that came out at the top of the year called The Pen Pusha, and it's been getting a lot of spins around the apt. lately.

I'll definitely write something more substantial on Reach soon, but in the meantime check out the fancy footwork in this video that landed in my inbox over the weekend.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Laura has had a tumor and it has had to go...

After a recent trip to the doctor to have a pain in her midsection checked out, Laura Hunt, my girlfriend of the last 15 years was told that she has had an ovarian tumor. Needless to say the news came as a shock and, as it turns out, the tumor is about the same size as the ovary itself. It’s what’s called a Dermoid tumor and although only about 10% of these kinds of tumors are cancerous it is growing and will ultimately cause what’s called an Ovarian torsion to occur. It has to be removed.

The bottom line is that even with insurance through GSU we have to raise 20% of the total cost of the surgery. That 20% is somewhere in the neighborhood of $5,000-$8,000 and Atlanta Medical Center wants it up front before they operate.

In the meantime we’re trying to raise money by any means possible. There are a couple of benefit concerts being organized around Atlanta, and I will update this post with information about the shows as it becomes available.

The first show is at Blind Willes on Sun., Sept. 19. Chickens & Pigs, The 4th Ward Afro-Klezmer Orchestra, Rocksploitation (formerly the A-Sides), the Bob Page trio, the Rod Hamdallah Band, and Western Union Messenger are playing, and maybe more (details coming soon). The cover will be a $10 donation. Music starts at 4 p.m.

A second show is happening at 529 on Sun., Sept. 26. Howlies, Mermaids, the Clap and Knaves Grave are playing. The cover will be a $10 donation. Music will start at 8 p.m.

For the time being we have set up the following Paypal link for anyone who would like to make a donation.

UPDATE: Laura had surgery on Wed., Sept. 8. Her tumor was removed successfully, along with a second tumor that we did not know about. Not really sure what the case is with the second tumor, but should know more about it soon. She's at home recovering now.

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Ty Segall Melted

Here it is. Ty Segall has officially raised the bar on Frisco noise-pop with Melted, an album that balances concise hooks with blown-speaker fidelity, achieving lo-fi perfection. The album maintains the primitive, psychedelic dirge qualities that keep him tied to his peers Thee Oh Sees, Nobunny, the Fresh & Onlys, etc. But as the first falsetto coo and broken, acoustic jangle of “Finger” explodes with a squelch and a distorted smash, it’s clear that he means business like never before. “Girlfriend” carries the first signs of carefree, melodic brilliance made all the more compelling by layers of jagged white noise. The upward trajectory continues into the melancholy of “Sad Fuzz,” before diving headlong into the doom-pop riffs of the title track. “Bees” degenerates into an annoying warble about drugs, but in the context of so many great songs, it’s forgivable. With its cycle of swelling, heart-pounding melodies and discordance, “Imaginary Person” seals the deal, making Melted the album that this whole scene has strived to create. (Goner Records) 5 out of 5 stars.

"Girlfriend" mp3
"Sad Fuzz" mp3

This review originally appeared on Creative Loafing's Crib Notes music blog.