Meet Your KZFR DJ Wk #12

Put A Face To The Voice Behind The Mic

KZFR is shortening the distance in social distancing by giving you, our listeners, a chance to meet your favorite KZFR DJ.  Every day during this campaign, KZFR will feature an on-air DJ with a social media vignette about themself, their radio program, personal interests, and more. This'll give you the opportunity to get better connected with the personalities you wake up and go to sleep listening to. In the time of stay-at-home orders we want our listeners to know that their community radio station is working hard to deliver cutting edge news and information and one-of-a-kind music selections.

We are proud to introduce you to KZFR DJs Jon, Lisa, Jake, Tom, George & Janet, Papa John & Russell

It's thanks to all our volunteer DJs that KZFR can continue to bring you the unique programming you value and enjoy every day.

Talkin About Practice co-host Jon Luken - "Jon-Thomas Luken- I joined KZFR in 2017 as a co-host, and self-proclaimed sports degenerate of Talkin’ Bout Practice, a sports talk show that is unorthodox in style.  Our show discusses anything sports, from local to national news from the unique perspective of friends around the water cooler.  I was brought in as a guest by creators Jarreau Gilbert and Derek Isomaki, not knowing that it would evolve into a permanent spot on the only locally produced sports talk radio show in the north state. I mean what could be better than talking sports and shooting the breeze with some of my best friends?  Having graduated from Chico State with a degree in Broadcasting, I am thankful for the community and KZFR for giving me the opportunity to wet my feet and perfect my craft. I am proud to be apart of the KZFR family and truly feel blessed to be doing something I love while chasing my dreams of a career in sports radio."

Facets of JazzIt's Just Jazz co-host Lisa Boyd - For years, Lisa has shared her love of the world of jazz with her listeners on Tuesday's Facets of Jazz & now she's joined the team on Monday's It's Just Jazz, too.

The Fun House & It's Just Jazz co-host Jake Sprecher - "My first exposure to KZFR came as a student delivering pizza for Woodstock's, around 2004. My buddy Bill Parnell had a midnight - 2am slot called Post-College Radio, and I'd come up to hang out. Then I started listening to Blues Bayou while I was delivering, and before long I was signed up for orientation.  My first show was a midnight Tuesday slot called On the Contrary, which was a mixed bag of rock and soul. I had that for a couple years, and then subbed off and on for quite a while, guesting on the Random Pick a lot. I definitely honed many aspects of being on the air sitting across from Jeffrey. Then in 2012, I started working part-time on the KZFR staff, and continued doing so through 2018. In that same span of time I hosted Say Hey!, KZFR's first sports talk show, before moving on to The Fun House, which I currently co-host with the great Jim Howell. I also just recently joined the rotation for It's Just Jazz with Steve and Lisa. After close to 20 years in Chico's music scene, I can't really imagine my life, professionally or otherwise, without KZFR. It's a very, very special place, and I'm eternally grateful for its place in our community. "

Woody & FriendsOne World Music co-host Tom Gagne - "The radio captured my attention at a very young age, listening to baseball games and rock & roll. Studied mass communications when I came to Chico State in 1971. Worked briefly at the two campus stations, KCSC and KCHO (T Gungee and The Bubblegum Mark Show). Started at KZFR many years ago with my partner, Rass Dogg, Friday mornings at the Skyway Connection eventually moving to Monday afternoons at the Gourmet Buffet (many years rotating with the wonderful, Jim House, and the House Blend). Now, in the rotation for Woody and Friends and One World Music. Music touches my heart and is a major connector in my life. It is an honor and pleasure to be a part of our community radio station."

O Gentle Light co-host George Whitlock & Janet Planet - "O Gentle Light officially started back in the late eighties by a novice named Justin from Saint Herman Monastery in Platina California. Justin left the show when he was transferred to Saint Herman Monastery in Alaska. Eventually a nun called Mother Sophia took over playing the music and voicing the readings.  According to Mother Sophia, the idea was to create something really different, something unique like no other show on any station. O Gentle Light is a show on Ancient Christianity also known as Eastern Orthodox Christianity, something many aren't even aware exists here in the West. It's Christianity in its most ancient form. Many of the spiritual texts were written hundreds of years ago. Stories about Saints often date back to the time of the catacombs and the persecution of Christians which led to martyrdom. Most of the music is imported and chanted in Church Slavonic, as well as other languages.

George began his involvement back in 1997 while assisting Mother Sophia with management and reading. Eventually, Mother Sophia relocated to Saint Xenia Monastery in Indianapolis Indiana and George went solo carrying on the tradition of the show. George met Janet in the year 1999 at Church. As time progressed they married. George was introduced around 2005 to a man named Firmilian, and he became a reader on O Gentle Light. After his death  in 2019, Janet  knew her husband George needed help so she stepped in and became a reader on O Gentle Light. George and Janet together produce the show, putting together the readings and music in hopes people will be blessed as well as entertained."

Basically The Blues co-host Papa John Miles - "My younger years were spent in SoCal where Michelob  was good beer and 70's Rock was cool.  I moved to Chico in '90. Mel the Blue Max 's Bartender was the only person I knew in town. I started attending live blues shows and I found what I had been missing Musically. The Max's demise led to me forming The Midnight Blues Society, putting on live Blues Shows at The Brickworks and then to hosting "Basically The Blues" 1995'ish. I also served on the KZFR BOD for a few years. Over the years KZFR has exposed me to many good people and good music in abundance."

Radio Daze host Russell Damien - "I came to Chico in ‘83 and have been part of the “media” from the beginning.  Two years with KCHO (in the basement of CSU Chico’s library).  Six years at KCSC (the student owned and operated radio station - GM for the last four).  Eleven years at Chico’s rock station KFM (93 dot 9).  Twenty years behind the scenes technically at “all” the local television stations.  Seven years (and going) at North State Public Radio.  AND, six years now with KZFR.

What you may not know is that I was there 30 years ago at the beginning of KZFR.  When Erik Mathisen started the station, a group of local dj’s were asked to help train some of the first volunteers. One of those “dinosaurs” I trained is still spinning here Friday nights.  In fact, KZFR was up against KCSC to see who would get the only available frequency and alas, the A.S. at Chico State couldn’t see the future.

Being a programmer at KZFR and being able to create a radio show highlighting the music of an era and of a format that defines my musical education and tastes (80’s college alternative), is the biggest thrill in my long history.  I believe in the power and message that local community radio sends and will defend it to the end.

I hope you will tune-in to Radio Daze (Friday(z) 6a-8a) and hear why it was voted (tied for 2nd) best radio program by our local community.  Thank you to the staff, listeners and all of you that support KZFR!"

Follow us on social media to get familiar with Chico’s eccentric, neighborly broadcasters. Facebook: @kzfr90.1fm, Instagram: @kzfr90.1fm & Twitter: @kzfr901fm


During these difficult times you, our wonderful listeners, showed us how much you love community radio. Thanks to your pledges during our recent Ale Release Celebration we can continue to bring you the programming you obviously value.
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1:22pm, 9-19-2020