WLFM gears up for another year

Laura Streyle

Considering the melodies heard drifting from the Lawrence Memorial Chapel, the bluesy tunes that jive in Harper Hall and the virtuosic études that float through the conservatory hallways of practice rooms, it is difficult to imagine that Lawrence could produce any more music.
Nevertheless, Lawrence does. Because Lawrence is all about going above and beyond the call of duty, there is a whole radio station full of more music, and a whole radio station staff made up of funny people who can tell you about the artists and the newest indie bands.
WLFM is a student-run Internet radio station that is owned and operated by Lawrence University. WLFM is funded through the Lawrence University Community Council. The station receives much of its music from recording labels that want their music on college music charts and send samples of their music to Lawrence for free.
Using the combined musical tastes and intuitive critiques of WLFM’s nine student workers, WLFM compiles lists of recorded music and sends these lists to College Music Journal. CMJ is a music discovery network based in New York City that uses multimedia interactions to connect fans with new music. WLFM’s music lists contribute to the generation of the the national charts, which gauge the success of music promoted on college radio stations at a national level.
Starting last year, WLFM began broadcasting Conservatory performances that took place in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel. Programs that were webcast live last year included concerts by the Lawrence Symphony Orchestra, the Wind Ensemble and Symphonic Band and the three Lawrence choral ensembles.
In addition to a wide variety of music, WLFM broadcasts a number of radio shows. Shows range from talk to pop to classical to reggae and, shows are broadcast online during the week from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Anyone can access the waves of WLFM through the Lawrence Web site or directly at http://www.lawrence.edu/sorg/wlfm/.
Drew Baumgartner, WLFM’s current program director, expressed hope that the “programming reflects the interests at Lawrence.” He said he wanted to remind students of the possible influence they can have on the radio station’s offerings.
“If you feel a huge portion of the music scene is being neglected, I would encourage you to apply for a show,” Baumgartner said.
Students can also call in or instant message their musical requests to the station. The phone number at the station, located in the Music-Drama Center, is 920-832-6566. The AOL Instant Messenger screen name for the station is WLFMnetDJ.
Music and radio shows are not all; WLFM is also responsible for the nail-biting annual event known as the Great Midwest Trivia Contest. This contest is the hub of random factoids and provides a realm for the trivia masters. For more information, go to http://www.lawrence.edu/about/trads/trivia.shtml.
This year, new sound recording equipment is being installed at WLFM so that student bands can record their music for the station without having to purchase their own recording equipment.
With additions such as this new equipment and with the entertaining lineup of shows, the station manager at WLFM, Willie Bauer, assures all listeners, “I am confident this will be the greatest year WLFM has ever had, perhaps even the greatest any college radio station has ever had. You can quote me on that.