Long before I became REALTOR®, I was a radio DJ. As a college student, I was program director of the campus station at Virginia Tech, and I worked at a commercial station for a few years afterward. I still enjoy listening to radio, whether broadcast or online, and especially the college and noncommercial stations you find down at the “left of the dial” (as the old Replacements song went).
One of the things I like most about the Triangle area is the noncommercial radio offerings; there are three very good university stations, two big public radio affiliates and several smaller college and community stations. Push a button or click a mouse and you can hear almost any genre of music, news and public affairs programming, local talk and sports, and a wealth of culture you won’t hear on “mainstream” radio. And it’s commercial-free. Allow me to share a brief (and possibly incomplete) guide to noncommercial radio in the Triangle…
Major College Radio
88.7 WXDU, Durham
WXDU is the Duke University station, staffed by about half students and half local volunteers. (Disclosure: I am a volunteer DJ for WXDU.) This is a great station for adventurous listeners, as you can hear indie rock, electronica, hip-hop, metal, jazz, country/folk, world music, even experimental and underground music. There’s a very good local music program on Sundays and some excellent specialty shows throughout the week. XDU’s 1500-watt signal is strong in Durham, Chapel Hill and west of the Triangle, and receivable in most of north & east Raleigh.
88.1 WKNC, Raleigh
WKNC is the college station at NC State. Staff is all full-time students. Their music programming is a little closer to the mainstream than WXDU’s, focusing more on indie rock during the day and electronica, hip-hop, or metal at night. Their non-music programming includes public affairs and live sports, like NCSU baseball. With a powerhouse signal of 25,000 watts, WKNC can be heard area-wide.
89.3 WXYC, Chapel Hill
The student station at UNC-Chapel Hill features eclectic programming in a similar vein as WXDU, although if you compare the two stations’ playlists you won’t see that much of the same stuff. You’ll hear a few more international artists on WXYC, and experimental music from some pretty obscure record labels. DJ’s are all students, as with WKNC. Interesting side note: WXYC claims to have been the first radio station ever to broadcast on the Internet. With 1100 watts of power, the signal doesn’t reach out all that far but easily covers Chapel Hill/ Carrboro and southwest Durham.
91.5 WUNC-FM, Chapel Hill
North Carolina Public Radio, as WUNC bills itself, is the Triangle’s NPR affiliate and broadcasts news and public affairs programming all day during the week. On weekends you hear public radio staples like Car Talk, The Prairie Home Companion, This American Life, plus locally produced music shows like the folk and roots-oriented Back Porch Music. With a 100,000 watt transmitter and several repeater stations, you can listen basically all over the state.
90.7 WNCU, Durham
WNCU is a jazz station based at North Carolina Central University. WNCU is a member of the African American Public Radio Consortium, and airs the Tavis Smiley show along with news programming from NPR and other networks.
Low-Power Community Radio
104.7 WHUP, Hillsborough
This relatively new non-profit station offers programming of all types: news, talk, music, live music in studio, and roots music after midnight. “Low-power” means 100 watts, so if you aren’t pretty close to Hillsborough you’ll need to listen online. WHUP archives its shows, so you can stream them at your convenience. (Disclosure: I’m also a volunteer for WHUP.)
105.3 WCOM, Carrboro
Similar to WHUP in structure and approach, Carrboro’s low-power station has been on air for several years and features news, talk, commentary and music. There is some syndicated programming, both music and news.
As I mentioned above I’m sure I’ve left a couple off, apologies to anyone who’s left out. But it’s pretty clear we live in a great market for noncommercial radio. It’s one of many things that makes the Triangle a great place to live.
About Marty Cassady.
Marty Cassady is a full-time sales associate of the Fonville Morisey Realty Croasdaile office.
A native of the Martinsville, Virginia area, Marty is a Virginia Tech alumnus and spent many years in Blacksburg before relocating to the Triangle in 1997. He was drawn here not only by the Triangle’s vibrant economy and housing market, but also by the music, arts and culture our area offers.
Marty brings to the real estate industry three decades of experience in advertising, marketing, promotions, and sales, plus a background in broadcasting and journalism. He has worked for the Durham Herald-Sun, the Carrboro Citizen, the National Press Photographers Association, and WUNC-FM. He has done free-lance media consulting, directed marketing and promotions for two regional video rental chains, and worked in music and book retailing. His first job after college was as a radio announcer, and he still does radio for fun today, as a volunteer DJ for Durham’s WXDU and Hillsborough’s WHUP.
Marty’s thoughts on how his work experience applies to real estate: “Everything I’ve ever done has involved customer service and client relations to some degree, and I’ve always been very proud of the level of service I’ve been able to provide. The keys are caring about your clients and doing what you say you’re going to do.”
Marty is a member of the Durham Regional Association of REALTORS®, the North Carolina Association of REALTORS®, and the National Association of REALTORS®.
Fonville Morisey Realty has 11 sales offices, with over 850 associates and employees throughout the Greater Triangle region. FM offers mortgage, insurance, property management, title services, real estate education courses and relocation services through its divisions and partners. For more information about Fonville Morisey Realty, visit www.fmrealty.com.