Arty Helm

Ruby Slippers

Ruby Slippers's picture

Many volunteer radio broadcasters are also long-time listeners to community radio stations. Ruby Slippers, host of the Click Your Heels Together radio show every other Tuesday morning from 4-7 a.m., is a broadcaster who values the opportunity to entertain KVMR listeners with her particular mix of music as much as she appreciates the ability to be a listener of community radio.

Ruby Slippers has a particular focus on humorous, clever tunes that are brilliant or potentially a bit silly. Songs that simply entertain with a catchy beat or melody, songs that have a message about environmental protection, or issues that effect our lives-and songs that may invoke a positive outlook on life are also played on the show. A Click Your Heels Together radio show can span decades of music and a variety of genres that include Americana, roots, folk, blues, rock, comedy, country, swing, world music, and more. This show can resemble genre free radio and can focus on a certain theme at times, or feature sets of songs that attempt to evoke emotion or comment on social issues and life in general. Ruby also highlights new artists and the latest releases from favorite performers.

The moniker, Ruby Slippers, came from the notion that a person can choose to change a frown to a smile in an instant- just click your heels together. The Ruby Slipper of Life philosophy is that we have power over every thought of every day, and we can choose to make those thoughts positive.

Ruby's musical interest was nurtured by a family that exposed her to many types of music. The comedy and storytelling styles of Stan Freberg, Tom Lehrer, Arlo Guthrie, and others influenced Ruby's interest in comedy. Her musical tastes were inspired by legendary KFAT radio in Gilroy and the clever tunes of U. Utah Phillips, Christine Lavin, Patty Larkin, Bobby Bare, the Austin Lounge Lizards, the Reverend Billy C. Wirtz, and many other songwriters who can create a song that reminds us to laugh at ourselves and all the nuances of living. The Monterey Bay area, where Ruby lived, has numerous community radio stations- so excellent, diverse music was on the airwaves all the time.

Ruby Slippers' first memories of community radio were from the radio station at Humboldt State University where she heard the song Who Put the Benzedrine in Mrs. Murphy's Ovaltine, and other memorable tunes. She rarely forgets a funny song and continues to collect the songs that have made her laugh over a lifetime. There is a belief that people who can twist words to write songs that make people laugh are particularly intelligent. She finds joy in bringing humorous songs to the KVMR listeners. If you have a chance to meet her, you might be careful about asking her to sing, she knows the words to some the best of the worst funny songs.

Community radio provides a medium for independent musicians to entertain a large audience and gain exposure for their music. Ruby attempts to interact directly with independent artists to bring new, fresh music to the airwaves. She is a reporter for Freeform Americana Radio (FAR), a list of the top rated CDs played by over 150 DJs nationwide each month, published by 3d Coast Music in Texas. She is also active within the folk DJ community.

The goal of the Click Your Heels Together radio show is to provide a musical tapestry that offers new music intertwined with old favorite tunes that may motivate someone to turn up the radio and sing along, comedy tunes that may inspire someone to smile or even laugh out loud, and songs with a message that may remind us to think. The show is full of surprises designed to wake you up in the morning with a smile on your face and a thoughtful outlook on the day.