WT's KWTS 91.1 shifting to all ’90s format

By Chip Chandler

KWTS The One 91.1, West Texas A&M University’s student-run noncommercial radio station, will shift to an all-’90s format Oct. 1.

“When we say ‘all-’90s,’ we mean all of the ’90s — ’90s rock, ’90s Top 40, ’90s country, ’90s hip hop and R&B. And not just the hits, either,” said KWTS adviser Randy Ray, director of broadcast engineering and associate lecturer of media communications. 

The impending format change—timed to celebrate the station’s 50th anniversary—was announced April 8 during “Psychotic Reaction,” a weekly radio show hosted by Dr. Marty Kuhlman, WT’s Jenny Lind Porter Professor of History.

Ray and Kuhlman also detailed plans for the station’s birthday party, set for 2 to 6 p.m. Oct. 1 on Homecoming Day in the KWTS studios inside the Sybil B. Harrington Fine Arts Complex.

“For each hour, we’ll be playing music from the ’70s, the ’80s, the ’90s, the 2000s and the ’10s, so we’d love to get some old DJs to come back and go on the air for those decades,” Ray said.

The party also will offer alumni the chance to see KWTS’ still fairly-new facilities, Ray said.

“KWTS has been educating students for 50 years, and having a campus radio station is a privilege that many universities don’t have,” Ray said. “For five decades, WT media students have gotten hands-on experience running the station, learning along the way just what a big responsibility it is to work in broadcast media.”

The station, a noncommercial rock station, officially launched at 3 p.m. April 12, 1972. It upgraded to 100 watts in 1982, then to 6,000 watts in 1998.

Ten students currently work as DJs or engineers at the station.

In addition to six weekly shows devoted to country music, Tejano, K-pop and more, the station hosts Live Lounge and One Sessions live concerts, posts podcasts, and provides music at tailgate and other on- and off-campus events.

Media communications students also train in digital distribution in many forms, preparing them for work in podcasts, streaming services, live and recorded audio engineering, management, programming and more.

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