Changes are afoot at KVMR 89.5 FM, with three broadcasters newly at the helm of two of the community radio station’s popular morning and early evening programs.
His legion of fans were saddened when Mike Bissell, longtime host of the “Wednesday Morning Show,” decided to move on at the end of 2017. Bissell’s newly named successors are Lisa Cowden and Lynn Heintz, who have begun alternating as hosts of the weekly 7 to 10 a.m. show.
Greg Jewett, longtime host of the weekly “Monday Music Magazine,” isn’t going anywhere. But he is converting to a biweekly schedule. Amee Medeiros has been newly installed to host the Music Magazine from 4 to 6 p.m. on alternate Mondays.
Let’s meet this trio of DJs:
When Lisa Cowden moved to Nevada County in 1982, KVMR was, she says, a “critical touchstone” to a new community. In 1984, she began hosting a 4-to-6-p.m. show, “Saturday Shakedown.” After four years, she was pulled away from the mic by full-time work as a founding employee of Ensemble Designs in Nevada City, manufacturer of broadcasting equipment.
In the meantime, Cowden has been a frequent substitute on KVMR, playing her patented blend of rock, blues and jazz with an emphasis on independent singer-songwriters and music of the Southeastern United States. She has also volunteered for the station in producing live remotes and served four years on the board of the Folk Alliance (FAR-West), a non-profit that promotes folk music and related performing arts.
Cowden wants her biweekly “Wednesday Morning Show,” which debuted this week and will return March 21, to jumpstart listeners’ mornings like a strong but mellow cup of coffee.
“I want the listeners to feel like they will hear something new, learn something new, and that it will be a show that they can groove with as they prepare for their day or drive to work,” she says.
Don’t be surprised if between the tunes Cowden injects guest interviews and features discussing some of her favorite issues: District One politics, women’s issues and health care.
For the past eight years, Lynn Heintz has been getting up way before dawn every other Wednesday to host “Over Easy,” from 4 to 7 a.m. For the first four years, he commuted in the dark all the way from Homewood.
Now Heintz can look forward to three extra hours of sleep every other Wednesday. But resting isn’t his style. Heintz, KVMR’s 2014 Volunteer of the Year, is known for his dedication to all things KVMR. Last year, he took on a really big job, producing the station’s four-day live remote of the California Worldfest, and he’ll do that again this summer. In his non-radio life, he’s a licensed contractor.
A graduate of the 2008 KVMR broadcasting class, Heintz had his own show two years later and has been a faithful sub for many on-air personalities. He has served on the remote broadcast crew and the Program Committee.
Heintz says the hallmark of the show he’ll share with Cowden is “more music (of all genres) and less talk.” His special interest in water issues and county government could pop up from time to time. And, as a Wednesday morning host, Heintz promises not to over-use the term “hump day.”
As a mere babe in arms, Amee Medeiros moved to Nevada City with her parents the year KVMR began broadcasting—1978. A longtime listener, she says, “it took me many years to get the nerve to apply to be a broadcaster.”
After graduating from the 2013 broadcaster training class, Medeiros worked her way into the studio via the KVMR Women’s Collective’s Monday evening show, which exclusively features women’s voices. Having met that challenge, she went on to substitute for Jewett, her radio mentor, on the “Monday Music Magazine” no less than 50 times. As of February 26, she is Jewett’s co-host, playing mostly brand-new music including electronica, indie pop, hip-hop and world beat.
Her DJ moniker is Prickly Pear, and you can find her on Facebook at Prickly Pear Radio.
Medeiros has worked with people with special abilities for 25 years. She has been the executive director of the Neighborhood Center of the Arts in Grass Valley for the past decade.
“As someone who runs a local non-profit,” she says, “I know all too well how delicate and precious non-profits are. KVMR is a big part of our community and I am proud to be member as well as a volunteer broadcaster.”
Calling All Would-Be Broadcasters
Do you have a passion for the magic and the mission of community radio? Have you ever imagined yourself behind the microphone, playing tunes, reporting news or encouraging public conversation? Volunteer to be a KVMR broadcaster.
KVMR will hold its next broadcaster training class from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on two consecutive Saturday, April 21 and April 28. More information and an on-line application form can be found at www.kvmr.org under Public Information.