Goodbye Zlam Dunk

Such a bittersweet story. This was my last On the Other Hand segment at KTSW and what better way to end my run there than with my friends. It’s like ending in full circle.

Now friends aside, this is a great Texas State story. This band started in a Texas State dorm, and the two other bands on the final show lineup, Equals and The Couch, were both from Texas State as well. Before I went back to Texas State, before I met any of these guys, I heard these three band names a lot from that community. That’s why I wanted to do this story.

But I’ll admit, I had a moment of panic when I was overthinking the story and thought I would come off as a fangirl (I guess that’s why they tell us not to cover our friends). Luckily, my directors kept me in check.

So I focused on the band’s end and the relationships with the two other bands. It was nice to sit down with the three bands once again for my last KTSW story. I was already feeling emotional about my upcoming graduation, and after my Hurricane Sandy story, all the giggles and trips down memory lane was something I needed.

BTW, I have a lot of material and interviews I did that didn’t make the story. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that I have a deleted scenes reel coming soon, here’s the deleted scenes reel.

on the other hand KTSW ktsw osd zlam dunk equals the couch

Best of 2012
Bittersweet Goodbye: KTSW

Everyone kept wondering why I would get teary-eyed about graduation. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t because of classes. I’m so glad to be done with late night study sessions, writing essays on topics I don’t really care about, my diet consisting of coffee, poptarts and cup o’ noodles, commuting from Austin, etc.

Graduating from Texas State University meant leaving KTSW.

I’ve never shared the story of how I got involved with the radio station. After all, I was a print journalism major. But on one journalism social gathering night, I was approached by one of my classmates who worked at the station to see if I ever wanted to try radio. I said yes.

So I was introduced to the news director, Audee, and the faculty adviser, Dan. I had met some of the other students at the station from another journalism meetup in the summer, so they were trying to convince Audee and Dan on why I should join the news team that night.

Turns out one of the textbooks they use in an electronic media class is by Al Tompkins. Not only did Al mentored us at the Poynter fellowship, some of us (me!) left with signed copies of that exact book.

This is how that conversation went when Dan found out I was a fellow:

Dan: Oh, you know of Al?
Me: Al taught us at the fellowship.
Dan: (long pause) I have no problems with her joining the team.

I joined the news team that following week.

Now a year later, I left with some of my best memories at Texas State and lots of great clips and experience from KTSW. It hasn’t really hit me that my time there is over. I mean, I did cry after I said “For the last time, this is Sarah Vasquez…” for my last story. I also cried when I finished editing that story and handed it to Halie to get it ready for air. I’d imagine it will really hit me when classes start again for the Spring semester and I won’t be there. I’m really gonna miss walking into the newsroom.

See, the thing you have to know is that we were a dysfunctional family (very much like #pcf11). We went through a lot together. We covered the Presidential election all night long. We left the newsroom around midnight exhausted but feeling like real journalists that night. We helped each other destress over a test or a paper or to get a story right. We put our heads together when a crisis arose. I ran all my kooky story ideas through them, which resulted in me producing some of my favorite stories to date. Anytime someone said something hilarious, it was immediately followed with “Sarah, you need to write that in your book.”

When you pursue a job like journalism that is filled with hard work and little pay off, I learned this year that’s it is important to find your journalism family. This job is stressful, and you need to surround yourself with people who will be there stressing right with you and is filled with so much drive and love for the job that it will motivate you to keep going.

That’s why it is really hard to say goodbye to KTSW.

KTSW best of 2012 pcf11

Best of 2012

2012 comes to an end tonight. WTF? Time is just swooshing by and that makes me sad. Have to say, this was a pretty good year. But as always here’s my 2012 wrap-up. This is just a small sampling. I have more write-ups coming soon. :)

Best Live Show: Radiohead

Radiohead “Lotus Flower” - Austin City Limits - behind the scenes from Austin City Limits on Vimeo.

Come on, hands down. There’s no competition when Radiohead is in the running (with the exception of Refused, but more of them later). Seeing them perform live was mindblowing, especially when I did not think I would catch a single show while they were in Texas. Thanks to my awesome best friend and her family, we won tickets to the ACL Live performance. Win. And we were super close! Seriously, I could have thrown a bottle towards Thom Yorke and wouldn’t miss. But I didn’t because that would be rude.

Best Band Discovery: Driver Friendly

Ok, I didn’t discover Driver Friendly this year, but after I interviewed them and listened to the new album which was the first release in too long, it was like discovering them for the first time all over again. So I will count them in this category.

They are just a fun band, on and off stage.

Best Vacation for a music nerd like me: Fun Fun Fun Fest

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It’s amusing on how I found out KTSW gave me tickets to Fun Fun Fun Fest. I zoned out (OK, I was on Facebook) during the meeting when they were announcing who was given the extra tickets from the station. All I heard was Fun Fun Fun Fest, my name, and then lots of gasps. At first, I was like ok, they picked me to cover the festival. Ok, that’s cool. Done that before. But then Lauren was giving me a speech about the hard work I do and there may have been some tears from my end, but I was excited. I was going to see Refused! Refused!!!

I found out after the meeting that it was a vacation. I was not allowed to work. I could take pictures, but that’s it. Ok. Deal. Best vacation ever. I loved that I didn’t have to remember what I saw. I got to hang out with friends without rushing off to the next set. I got to relax and enjoy music.

Of course, I did a small write-up in my planner, but it was for documentation purposes only! I document my life, what can I say?

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Catchiest songs of 2012

Try to get these songs out of your head.

The Couch “Kaiser”

The Shears “Octo”

Favorite albums of 2012 in no particular order

More to come…

Radiohead The Dalles best of 2012 burgess meredith driver friendly fun fun fun fest 2012 little radar refused searcher suite 709 the couch the eastern sea the shears tje austin whitman zlam dunk KTSW

Chris Alexander

This segment was for my Comic Con coverage. I read through the panel listings to see who was appearing and I ran across this guy. The interview came together pretty quickly after that. I met him at Comic Con since our interview was over the phone. He’s super nice, and I was not surprised to pass by his table a couple of times to see people trying their hand at origami.

Although, there needs to be a correction. He had a panel on Saturday and Sunday, not just Sunday.

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Larissa Ness

This story needs no explanation, really. I needed a story about an interesting talent and I remembered stumbling on this music video:

The story was born. This was one of my earlier stories for On the Other Hand, so I don’t think I had a theme song yet.

larissa ness KTSW ktsw osd on the other hand

For Hours and Ours

This story was supposed to air in the summer the week For Hours and Ours played their last show. But I got sick. Bumsville. Then I bought the story back out when I had to postpone my Hurricane Sandy story.

So I scheduled a follow-up interview with two of the members from FHAO on Wednesday, worked on the script on Thursday, put together the story Friday morning and it played that Friday afternoon. Not my best work, but sometimes time is just not on my side.

And as a result, I said Ricky’s last name wrong. I’m really sorry about that, Ricky.

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