AltFacts: WBRnew

Music fans from throughout the state recently turned on their cars to find Christian rock exuding from their speakers unexpectedly. Even for the conscientious listeners of WBRU, who’d known for weeks that a seismic shift in local broadcast was coming, having your tuned radio suddenly spit out the Christian rock reality when you turn the engine over is a little disconcerting. The new 95.5 is WLVO, which purchased the bandwidth for around $5.6 million. The station is not ad supported, instead relying on donations and private and corporate funding.

While the bandwidth is gone, the student-run broadcasting will continue – with less adult supervision as program director and music icon Wendell Gee departs – online, as wbru.com (which, weirdly, is different from Brown Student Radio, whose site seemed to be down at the time of the switchover). The new BRU online station has two simultaneous feeds for your listening pleasure.

BSR, Brown Student Radio, has also relinquished its bandwidth (WELH) and recently, public radio stations have acquired the bandwidth from Bryant University’s student station WJMF, and UMass Dartmouth lost WUMD. So, news flash – college students are getting their entertainment online. Go figure.

The interwebs are full right now with well-deserved, heartfelt goodbyes and nostalgic missives. And the sign-offs on the last night will produce a tingle in anyone who grew up with BRU feeding them musical gifts and surprises. And yes, in the final hours, there were four-letter words (cause, who’s gonna fire you for that? The FCC can’t exactly take them off the air) and the parting wisdom, “Fuck it up Providence!”

In related news, watch these pages for commentary by the Christian Alt News Network, soon to be the new owners of Motif. All images will be replaced with images of angels, P&J will officially be retitled, “The obit column.” Listings might be shorter, as we’ll restrict them to only wholesome activities happening at venues that have been exorcism-free for at least 10 years. There are not a lot of those in RI, but we’ll make do. The new publishers will bring a hip and happening perspective to the sins of drinking, heavy metal, cannabis and theater, right here in pages you already love. Just with fewer fucking swear words. Fake news forever!

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