Sunday, October 24, 2010

Audio Stream ...

Seldom Heard Radio 10242010 - my first live broadcast of the Autumn and I'm half asleep at the microphone ...

Send comments if you'd like the playlist posted! And thanks for listening ...

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Tracks - Golden Dreams

Here is a gem of an unreleased song from a band called Tracks. Tracks was a band that formed at Dartmouth College in the late '60s, and was managed by Wayne Wadhams (of The Fifth Estate, "Ding Dong, The Witch Is Dead.") Tracks released music on the Boston Skyline Records label. There is a review of a best-of compilation at If anyone has more information on Tracks and would like to share I would be most appreciative.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Essential info ...

So who is DJ Frederick and what are all his projects, anyway? In addition to working 45+ hours a week and trying to make time for my famly, I have flights of fancy that involve the following:

Seldom Heard Radio is the title of my long-time core radio project. It consists of a mix of independent music from the 1950's to the present. On any given broadcast you might hear a freeform blend of world music, rock, jazz, psychedelic, acoustic, jam, funk, indie pop and all kinds of other music along with updates on the world of radio broadcasting and indie media. Seldom Heard Radio is broadcast on WSCS 90.9 in New London NH and has been heard in the past on WNEC 91.7 Henniker NH, 95.1: The Pirate Ship, WBCQ shortwave, WRMI shortwave, Radio 510 International and JRRI in Ireland.

SIGNALS - an occasinal series of low tech DIY zines I am writing, editing and publishing related to pirate radio, shortwave radio, community radio, broadcasting history, indie media and related topics. 

See (new issue published in 2010!!!)

MIXED MEDIA - local media column focusing on radio, print, and internet media in the Kearsarge / Sunapee regions in New Hampshire. Mixed Media is published every other week in the Intertown Record our excellent local newspaper.

THE VILLAGE GREEN - New project for 2010 ... podcast/broadcast to illuminate local and regional musicians from New Hampshire and New England. Eight 30 minute episodes have been recorded to date! Check out the Village Green blog for downloads at

The Village Green may also be downloaded at

One Minute Zine Reviews - exactly as the title says, in both audio and video editions. 

Check for links ...

Voice of Middle Earth - new podcast inspired by the writings of JRR Tolkien featuring earthy and ethereal music ... visit for more information and streaming audio! 

Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Hopeful Telegram: A Hippie-Punk Archive

A new radio endeavor from DJ Frederick ... this is just the "pilot" program ... lots of musical obscurities from the 1960s through the present ... not much announcing ... emphasis here is on psychedelic folk music, peace, freedom, creativity, and homemade radio as revolution.

Please leave comments ... next time more announcing, I promise!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Jeff Pekarek To Each Their Own LP

Jeff Pekarek & friends started off 1982 by recording this LP in eight hours on January 2nd. Those were the days when engineers, producers and musicians used less digital wizardry and more sweat equity. (Okay, having written that sentence, despite the weird language and the existence of Mike Oldfield, I'm going to let the statement stand  ;-) To Each Their Own starts off with a gorgeous guitar tune (Sunrise) then segues into what sounds like a Billy Bragg inspired sea shanty (Blow Ye Winds). There's traditional music with cello (Devil's Dance / Cuckoo's Nest), a slow sacred music themed burner (Gate Gate) and more. Coming from other artists, this LP might be seen as disconnected, disjointed, and unfocused but Jeff Pekarek's stellar musicianship shines through and unifies To Each Their Own into an adventurous listening experience. Tucked away toward the end of the LP is one of the most beautiful guitar pieces I've heard in ages (Sea Urchin). May Yoga Records keep unearthing these gems that deserve a much wider listening audience.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

WNEC interview part two

College radio has always been a strange animal. It ranges from highly professional university stations that are National Public Radio affiliates to small, student run, low-powered stations that may not even be heard beyond campus borders. Henniker’s WNEC, transmitting at 91.7 is somewhere in the middle, broadcasting with about 100 watts to surrounding communities (including parts of Warner, Bradford, and Newbury). This week we continue our interview with the station manager Dan Freese and veteran DJ Chip Colcord.

Dan, tell me about your role as the station manager.
Dan Freese: Concerning my role-for many years, probably at least five, the station in my opinion started to fade. When the station was moved to the Simon Center from the dungeon in the library I believe it lost its identity. We were always like a cult and when it moved it became more mainstream which has its good and bad points. With that in mind I’m going to attempt to regain some of its mystique from the past. The first thing that was done was to move the broadcast studio from the closet it was in to a larger room. I never liked the set up of that room, too confining and no air circulation. This was accomplished without affecting our operating budget and with the aid of Phil Reeder who is an alumni of New England College (and WNEC). He and I spent many hours planning this and we were able to do it without a major disruption in on-air time.
The structure of the E-board is the next thing I’m working on as right now the station operates more like a club than a station. We spend too much time discussing events we want to sponsor and not enough on the operation of the station. I’ve re-written some of the student job descriptions like Program Director and added the position of Music Director. My hope is that during the summer I can work with the students in these two positions as far as training them in their roles and we can move forward from there.

What do you have in mind for the future of WNEC?
Dan Freese: A couple of items in the future is to re-establish a production studio where the student DJ’s can make promos and station ID’s-basically have some fun and be creative. We have the equipment for this; I just need to assemble the pieces. We’re also moving forward with internet streaming which we had at one point but when advisor’s changed several years ago so did that ability. And one final thing is to work with the Student Athletic Advisory Council to broadcast athletic events which is the most common request we have.

From the standpoint of programming my hope is that more students become involved with the station. Currently we have students on campus that don’t know we have a radio station. At one time, during my twenty plus years associated with WNEC we had students doing a show three times a week starting at 7 am and I recall the station broadcasting live everyday of the week from noon until 2 am. That’s my vision and we will get there, as long as I can remain patient.

Chip could you tell me about your broadcasting history on WNEC?

Chip Colcord: I started the new show called Out of the Woods back in November of 2009 after taking a three year hiatus from radio. Back during the 1990s I hosted similar shows which were split between contemporary folk and bluegrass programming. I did variations of these shows from 1994 through 2001. The new show incorporates the best of both, plus additional genres as well so long as they are acoustic-based. My emphasis is on the 'wires and wood' fretted instruments, so you won't hear a lot of horns or pianos, but they sneak in too occasionally. I play a lot of new releases from the best of the contemporary singer-songwriters and bluegrass acts, but also try to play some of the classics as well as the occasional 'fish out of water' such as Nirvana Unplugged and that sort of thing. Hopefully there's a little something for everybody in the mix. I am also trying to have the occasional live guest perform on the show as I did in the past. Since it is a Friday show, it is more difficult to schedule visits with touring musicians on that day. I did have my first guest recently however when multi-instrumentalist singer-songwriter Rich Hamilton came out from Jaffrey to play live on the show, and I have a few other local acts in the works as well. The show has been airing from 6 to 9 on Friday, but at least for this summer season listeners should be able to hear me from 4 to 7 pm. With any luck, this will become the new time slot for the show, allowing for good drive time/dinner time listening. Artists wishing to submit music or perform on the show can contact me at:

What you feel the role of college radio will be in the media age?

Dan Freese: The future of college radio, in my opinion, is fading. With the expansion of satellite radio I think that only the larger schools with money to invest will continue although satellite radio has its share of problems. I believe WNEC will continue on (via the internet) but only so long as it is affordable.
Chip Colcord: I would like to think that college radio will remain pretty much the same in the future, but that air stations will likely become online-centric, if not moving entirely to online broadcasting.

Your columnist predicts that there are two divergent scenarios college radio could travel. In one, it becomes irrelevant due to the overwhelming competition from ipods, online audio, and digital music formats. In another scenario, it fulfills its mission though offering educational audio programs, academic and community access to the airwaves, and focuses on community services that are not available through commercial radio or websites. In order for this to be successful, colleges must fund their radio stations adequately and treat them like the resource they are. The next decade will be crucial for non-commercial radio in all forms. Let’s tune in and find out where the radio voyage is going!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Pat Gatti - Someone ... Somewhere

Growing up in the 1960's and 1970's, the atmosphere in the music "industry" was very different. Musicians seemed to create music for the sheer joy of it ... music was a spiritual calling, a vocation, something that needed to be manifest - not for the MTV masses but for the individual and their circle in the world. Thank the gods and goddesses that some of these musicians went into recording studios and dropped their creative visions onto tape and vinyl.

Listening to Pat Gatti's Someone ... Somewhere (1975) while driving to the radio station yesterday, tears welled in my eyes. Right from the start, the title track resonated and echoed in my heart. It was like hearing the comforting words and melodies of John Denver, but expressed more soulful. Gatti's songs range through the emotions of love and grief, meeting and parting, and distance ... and then he illuminates with guitar instrumentals like "16th Century Orient" and "Estudio and Obbligato" that are so well crafted and nuanced that one can not help but to stop everything and listen.

I understand that Pat Gatti played the nightclub circuit for a living, with its smoke filled stages and loud, inattentive crowds. Its almost impossible to listen to this music and not be taken on a journey. Thank you Pat for leaving these songs to us, and thank you Douglas for releasing them digitally via

Two "new" songs from Fletcher Tucker (Bird By Snow)

Words can not describe the beauty of Fletcher's music, or the movement his words and music create in my soul. Songbread/Another Ocean is the most expressive, heartfelt, and spiritual recordings of the past decade. Now he is offering "After Birth" ... free mp3s of alternative versions of two of the songs from Songbread/Another Ocean. I feel deep
Gratitiude ... download at

Bird By Snow's next venture drops in late October on vinyl & cd. Now is the time to cultivate patience.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

All Indie Radio WAIR

A new broadcast of free radio shortwave station WAIR is available for download ... apparently the torch has been passed from previous station operator Robert J. Yardbrown to new host A. J. Kretchmar. WAIR used to specialize in hard-to-find indie music and it's good to hear that spirit is continuing ...

WNEC interview part one

Previously published in the Intertown Record:

Nestled on the second floor of the Simon Center at New England College is a radio station that is tenacious in every sense of the word. Its origins reach back to the early 1970’s.Your columnist recalls joyfully listening to 91.7 FM back in the 1980’s and then later becoming a community DJ there in the mid 00’s. The studio was essentially a closet, the cd players were ancient but stalwart machines, the transmitter always had technical glitches (when it was working at all) and the technology was from the ghost of radio’s past. However in 2010, the station is enjoying a highly anticipated transformation. It is my pleasure to introduce you to our area’s best kept radio secret – WNEC.

Station manager Dan Freese and veteran program host Chip Colcord graciously consented to conduct an interview about WNEC.

What makes WNEC different from other radio stations?

Dan Freese: Well, WNEC is a college radio station and because of that it is in part a training facility as well as a source of diverse musical tastes. From the training standpoint we realize that mistakes will be made but by allowing the students to make mistakes (unless it violates FCC regulations) it makes it easier for them to do a show. If we took them to task for anything they may do wrong then we wouldn’t have any student DJ’s. Of course, we seasoned pro’s make mistakes as well and don’t (and I won’t speak for Chip) beat ourselves up too bad.

From a music standpoint our format varies from acoustic to Christian, rap to jazz, eclectic to classic rock and roll so we cover a wide spectrum. We’re currently working on a playlist for our automation system that will included music from current show song logs, almost like the student’s show with a pre-recorded promo to be played during the automated program that informs the listener that they are listening to a sample of the dj’s show and when it’s on-almost like an hour or 2 long promo.

Chip Colcord: Well, first I guess I think people would have to realize the difference between commercial and college radio to begin with. WNEC has a bit of a history of being about as free-form as a radio station possibly can be. The hosts themselves have historically controlled the content of their individual programs nearly 100%. Aside from the required public service announcements and station identification, DJs on WNEC create their own programs. Having so many varied personalities on the air, you never know what you will tune in to find, for better or worse. Listeners are likely to tune in one day and hate what they hear, only to tune in the next day and fall in love with a certain program. This variation has always been the tradition at WNEC and it happens year after year as students come and go, community members join and depart, and so on. WNEC DJs have been putting genuine thought behind their flow of music since it began in 1972, years before attempted to do the same thing with a computer. College and community radio is an art form in itself, while commercial radio is simply a business.

What will listeners hear on WNEC?

Dan Freese: As far as what listeners will hear, we are on the air 24x7 due to automation which has a variety of music although it tends to favor my tastes and that of Chip because we put the list together. As far as live shows we let the students choose the venue or style of music at this point, we don’t have a rotation like we’ve had in the past. Styles of music vary from Christian oriented to hip-hop and rap although I still have not been able to distinguish between the 2. We did have a student doing an international show that concentrated mostly on German music and we also have 2 students doing a sports talk show at 11 am twice a week.

Chip Colcord: Unless there is a live DJ doing a show at the time they tune in, listeners will hear our present automation flow that we have been tweaking for some time now. Whenever a live show ends, the DJ will play our automated mix of music from various genres. It is presently organized into miniature sets of music that hopefully flow nicely, split with public service announcements and station identification spots. A lot of different station members and friends have helped to ensure there's a little something for everyone in the automation flow. Dan has already mentioned a plan to add more specific show-related spots to our automation created by the DJs themselves, and we will continue to improve the mix and hopefully create special flows for various times of the year such as a holiday mix.

Your comments on media and other musings are always welcomed at

Saturday, August 07, 2010

New Hampshire college & LPFM stations

A brief guide to college, independent and LPFM radio stations in New Hampshire:

WUNH – 91.3 – Durham: University of New Hampshire – the granddaddy of all college radio in NH, this station has been on the air since at least the early 1970’s and has a fantastic digital signal with 6,000 watts reaching all of eastern and southeastern New Hampshire, northern Mass and southern Maine.

WSCS – 90.9 – New London: Colby-Sawyer College – station where I have DJ’ed since 2000, sincere and energetic college radio for the Kearsarge Region of New Hampshire.

WPCR – 91.7 – Plymouth: Plymouth State University – commercial free listening as you drive North on 93 toward the White Mountains. Mostly hard rock but occasionally some classical!

WKNH 91.3 – Keene: Keene State College – excellent variety and now broadcasting 24/7!

WNEC 91.7 – Henniker: New England College – great little indie station broadcasting 24/7 with a wide range of tunes ... brought back to life by Chip Colcord and Dan Freese. Chip's show, Out of the Woods, can be heard on Fridays at 4 pm.

WSPS 90.5 – Concord: Saint Paul’s School – an awesome variety of music, great signal, but often on automation! Live community oriented DJ’s would be appreciated! WCNH - 94.7 - Concord NH - 80 watt classical music station heard mostly within Concord city limits.

WXGR - 101.5 - Dover NH - Great tunes. Automated 24/7 but does broadcast "Democracy Now"

WLLO - 102.9 - Londonderry NH: Automated mix of folk and rock music. Operated by the Londonderry School District.

WSCA – 106.1 – Portsmouth NH – the Seacoast's awesome low power fm community station!

WFPC-LP 105.3 in Rindge NH operated by Franklin Pierce University - I don't know anything about this station!
and across the state line into Vermont ...

WOOL - 100.1 - fantastic community station based in Bellows Falls VT with local program hosts bringing the airwaves to the community and the community to the airwaves.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Small Mountain Bear

One of the joys of being a DJ at a college radio station (WSCS) is rummaging through the stacks and discovering something totally new and wondrous. Small Mountain Bear definitely fits both adjectives.

In this promo cd, Will Read has collected twelve original songs, each with its own musical sensibility. There is an occasional homage to Paul Simon or the Kings of Convenience on this cd but in the context of Read's skillful songwriting and musicianship and indie folk/pop ethos, this is a good thing. From the opening "Untitled (Spy Song)" with both acoustic and wah wah guitars, cymbals and catchy melody / chorus, I knew I was in for a treat. In the true indie spirit, the artist distributes his music for free via downloads on his website. How cool is that?

Listen up at

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

A word from Larry Knutson ... thank you so much!

Just ran into this three year old blog entry concerning WSLE in Peterboro, NH. I was the night shift DJ with that station, from 1977 to early 1979. Joel Gray (Music Director) was morning drive, Tim Tobin (Program Director) was mid-day, and Ken McKay was afternoon drive time. Debra Budreaux (sp?) was the Station and Sales Manager and Fritz Weatherbee the News Director and personality in his own right. WSLE was the first of the true east coast Indie Stations. Yes, WNEW in NYC was the major metro rules ground-breaker, and later the Boston Phoenix station was incredible. However, the Boston station's format was clearly a knock off of what Tim Tobin put together at WSLE. I can remember doing the night show, many times, when a national artist would "stop by" his/her favorite east coast station, WSLE. Taj Mahal, Bonnie Raitt, Noel Paul Stookey, Dr. John, Jorma Kaukonen, George Thorogood, Bob Weir,,,,those jump to memory immediately, but there were MANY more incredible visits and experiences in that little studio in Southern N.H. It's nice to see that someone still remembers those halcyon early days of free-form radio, which didn't last long, but arguably formed some of the bedrock for today's web based stations, such as Folk Alley and Radio Paradise.

Travel Well friends,
Larry Knutson
WSLE 1977-1979

Release of the Summer 2010 ... Ryan Kickland's "The Mountain"

Wow. I'm determined to revive this blog after way too long a hiatus. Might only get to post every so often ... so rather than posting a release of the month I am presenting a Release of the Season this time around.

One of the reasons I am excitied to revive the blog is a promo cd that I generously received from Ryan Kickland. If the Decembrists Hazards of Love is a rock opera, then Ryan Kickland's The Mountain is a folk opera that rocks. The songs follow a natural arc, the story of transformation of one man in communion with the natural world. Kickland's songs are simultaneously universal and intensely personal. His music is wonderfully masculine, as the musician calls forth this inner magician, warrior, king and lover. One doesn't stumble across music this deep very often - the "Songbread / Another Ocean" lp by Bird By Snow comes to mind, yet only in the sense that both lps involve rich imagery and unique voices telling it "how it is" from the soul.

Now more than ever we need to embrace our place in the natural world. Humanity is not different from nature, but an essential part of the ecosystem. How we navigate our place in the natural world will impact our survival as a species, and the overall health of what is left of our environment. Journeys like The Mountain may tip the scales in the direction of personal and environmental healing.

For more information visit

Sunday, July 25, 2010

First post in 100 years!!!

Okay ... maybe not *that* long ... but close enough

A free radio friend tells me that there are two new radio programs from early to mid 2000's shortwave pirate stations posted at the website below ... so I'm getting the word out!

Mystery Science Radio (2010 Episode 1):

Purple Nucleus of Creation (2010 Episode 1):

Saturday, May 22, 2010

DJ Frederick's top two internet sites for buying music

1. CD BABY – CD Baby was started by one man, Derek Sivers, a musician who was asked by a few friends to sell their cds on the his band’s website. CD Baby now distributes music by over 80,000 artists. Every imaginable genre is represented, and I have personally found some of the most intriguing and obscure indie music on the planet via CD Baby. There are numerous payment options, reasonably priced cds, and the cds arrive fast. There really *is* a whole world to explore.

2. DUSTYGROOVE - funk, soul, rock, jazz, cds, lps, 45's ... what's not to love? Dustygroove is part of the indie / lesser-known music camp ... exceptional service, selection and prices. If I don't stop now I'll sound like a commercial.