Ms. Bags ends WDBX Membership Drive w/ massive pledge to “Style City”

Thanks to the incredible generosity of a long-time WDBX listener, this year’s Spring Membership Drive ended early, with a massive pledge allowing the station to meet its $13,000 goal! Ms. Bags, the pseudonym of an anonymous donor and fan of many shows at WDBX, made her pledge to “Style City” in support of the Friendly Badger Committee. For those not aware of the Friendly Badger Committee, it is a cross-species effort made by Badger University at Style City to promote understanding between badgers and humans, with adopt-a-badger programs and reduced-price meals for senior badgers.



“It’s Too Damn Early” moving times!

Starting Sunday, April 15th, you can hear experimental music, avant-garde works, and sound art from 5-6 p.m. at the new “It’s Too Damn Early” showtime. Since it’s no longer “too damn early,” we’ll have a new name to go along with the time switch– be sure to listen Sunday, when I reveal the new name!

For everyone with a sentimental side, join me one last time on April 21st, from 4-6:30 a.m., for the “farewell” broadcast of my overnight hijinks. I’ll play the music, and you can dance while the ship goes down.

Friday the 13th on WDBX !!!!!

Friday the 13th, of May 2011 “Rock with The Ox!” playlist!!

Soundgarden – Slaves & Bulldozers
Stone Temple Pilots – Dead & Bloated
Led Zeppelin – The Ocean
The Kings – Go Away
Alice In Chains – Would?
D Generation – No Way Out
Owl & Crows – Facade
The Black Fortys – Helicopters
Arcade Fire – Ocean Breaths Salty
Bjork – Big Time Sensuality
Moby – Body Rock
Eagles – Life In The Fast Lane
Drivin’-n-Cryin’ – Fly Me Courageous
James Gang – Seems To Me
Rolling Stones – Gimme Shelter
Steve Miller Band – Jet Airliner
Fleetwood Mac – Gold Dust Woman
The Alarm – Rain In The Summertime
Electric Light Orchestra – Mr. Blue Sky
Beatles – Penny Lane
Arcade Fir – Sleeping In A Submarine
Ben Folds Five – She Don’t Use Jelly
Depeche Mode – In Your Room
Flock of Seagulls – Wishing

If there was a wrong button…. I pushed it!   The # 13 usually ROCKS for me but today…. well… until next week… ROCK WITH THE OX!   PS…Join me on the Folk Fiasco all summer long!!!!  Wednesdays from 10 a.m.  to Noon on YOUR Community Radio WDBX!

email your requests now to

“It’s Too Damn Early,” 2/19/11

(Note: I’ve edited a bit of my original post.)

I was disheartened to find multiple copies of a rude flyer posted about myself at the station this morning. Apparently, some random passive-aggressive type took offense at my mention of disliking Bob Dylan last week, and decided that the proper response would be to mock my sexuality. 

Remember when that last flyer about hating my show got me into the New York Times? Maybe this time, I’ll end up in a better class of rag, like MAD.

Until then, enjoy your playlist:

Eyes Like Saucers — Owl Creek Bridge (from “Parmalee, Tribute To a Dog,” on Ikuisuus/Ruralfaune
Charlamagne Palestine — A Sweet Quasimodo Between Black Vampire Butterflies (from album of the same name, on Cold Blue Music)
Thollem McDonas, Rick Rivera — The Sun Don’t Wait (from “I’ll Meet You Halfway Out In The Middle Of It All,” on Edgetone Records)
Thollem McDonas, Rick Rivera — War Is Terror, Terror Is War
Thollem McDonas, Rick Rivera — I’m No Different From You Now
Eyes Like Saucers — Sea Song (from “Still Living In The Desert, And Mostly In My Own Head,” on Last Visible Dog)
Eyes Like Saucers — Delusion of Reference
Eyes Like Saucers — Still Living In the Desert (And Mostly In My Own Head)
Eyes Like Saucers — I Want To Believe
Conure — Amsterdam and 81st, A Reverie (from “Strings, Locations,” on Edgetone)
Conure — Feedback Location String
Kevin Kastning, Siegfried — Umbra I (from “Gravity of Shadows,” on Greydisc)
Kevin Kastning, Siegfried — Umbra II
Kevin Kastning, Siegfried — Umbra III
Kevin Kastning, Siegfried — Umbra IV
The Stumps — The Black Wood, pts. 1-3 (from “The Black Wood,” on LVD)

Update: Here’s the link to view both flyers. Be sure to click them to view in full size.

My first time on-air at WDBX

After reading Jason’s post yesterday, I was similarly inspired to share a bit of my own show’s history with readers here at The Blogapus. As I usually say, if it’s not in the liner notes of an album, I’ll forget it– but since I’ve got my original “New Volunteer Application” handy, I can definitely say our story starts in mid-October, 2000.

At the time, I was hosting a program called “Radio Show For Resume” at WIDB, the student radio station at Southern Illinois University. “RSFR” was my early attempt at something like “It’s Too Damn Early” is now, a program featuring experimental music of all sorts. It doesn’t sound too difficult, but it should be noted that my only radio experience up until this time had been about two years worth of co-hosting a live, freeform program of improvisation.

Our broadcasts were influenced by radio drama, vaudeville, and the radio art broadcasts of KPFA’s “Over the Edge”. We were just as likely to create a program about beverages featuring hundreds of audio samples as we were to let someone play a Tibetan singing bowl for an hour. In other words, sitting down to play other people’s CDs was sort of strange. Another downside was that WIDB wasn’t actually broadcasting to anyone but kids in the dorms, the Student Center, and a handful of online listeners… and I wanted to be on the radio!

Naturally, I had been keeping my eye on WDBX as a possible place to transfer a version of the show.

One day, I was driving around in Carbondale while listening to WDBX. I must not have had anything too important going on, because when I heard a DJ mention that he’d been keeping the controls warm for another DJ who was long overdue to arrive, I turned the car around and headed over there. My big plan was to take whatever CDs I had in the car, pose as the tardy DJ’s stand-in, and get on the air.

I don’t recall exactly what I said, but it worked. Perhaps Lonesome Roy was in an especially generous mood that day, or perhaps he was just sick of waiting for the next guy. Whatever, I don’t recall feeling that I fooled him– he just gave me a quizzical look, and a drawn out “okaaaaaay.”

Although I applied to join WDBX shortly thereafter, Brian’s initial offer of a 2-4 a.m. slot didn’t work for me at the time, due to a work conflict. A little over a year passed before I was able to start at WDBX in January of 2002. Following my earlier naming convention of keeping things ridiculously obvious (“Sounds Like Radio,” and “Startling Moniker” are also good examples) I quickly named my show “It’s Too Damn Early.”

If for some strange reason, you’re still awake after reading this entry, you can read more about my thoughts on radio and blogging in a couple different interviews here and here, and about my earlier show with WIDB here.


Jazzman Jay

Editor note: This entry is part of “Roots Rockin’ Reggae” host Bongo’s continuing series of WDBX and music-related memories. Click here to see previous entries. If you’re digging these, be sure to tune in this Thursday from 6:30-8 p.m., and give him a call at the station to let him know!

One evening I was filling in for a DJ in the jazz genre. Me no know nuttin’ bout jazz. I run to the library and find a tune called Kiss My Ax, with a photo of a shiny sax on the front that ran twenty minutes. Great, a quarter of the show, and I send it out over the airwaves.

A neatly dressed black dude walks into the studio in the middle of the song. He wore a neatly trimmed white beard and said he was a retired insurance salesman who always wanted to be a DJ. I asked him what kind of music, he said jazz.

“Great ” I said, and sent him to the library, and he returned with half a dozen CDs. After he played a few songs I asked him if he wanted to introduce a song and say something about it. He was a little timid and balked at talking over the air. “Look, there’s lots of white in your beard, and it’s your dream. If you wanted to learn how to swim, you don’t need to read a book on swimming, you need to get in the water.”

He smiled, I turned on mic two and his career as a jazz DJ at DBX was launched.

A little WDBX history!

Although I’ve been writing this series off-and-on since late 2009 at my personal blog, STARTLING MONIKER, I thought some folks at THE BLOGAPUS would enjoy seeing some of the very strange, and very funny show proposals that have come our way. Start at the first one, which tells how I came across these in the first place, and then work your way through my “best-of” list. Hilarious! Be sure to click the photos to view them in full size.

#1: I hope you like nursing homes!

#4: Irish terrorist dance party!

#5: No hippies?

#8: “And now, something generic.”

#11: Like Barry White, but with more chutzpah.

#13: For the Chicago/Pink Floyd crossover audience!