October 4-11, 2006

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Nūz: Santa Cruz County News Briefs

KPIG's Dallas Dobro Joins KZSC

Dallas Dobro is a man of the people, a musical evangelist who's happiest when recruiting new converts to the gospel of roots music. But earlier this summer, the veteran DJ ended up separated from his flock of listeners following his departure from KPIG, a station where he enjoyed a strong following and, by commercial station standards, relative autonomy over what he played.

So Nūz is happy to now report the radio resurrection of Dallas Dobro, who returned to the airwaves on Monday in a new location, up on the hill at KZSC, where he'll host a weekly show from 6 to 9am. Dobro joined up with the UCSC college station after being contacted by former KPIG colleague, 'Sleepy' John Sandidge, who also hosts KZSC's popular Friday morning Bushwacker's Breakfast Club.

Dobro sees the new show, at a radio station with a wide college-age following, as a perfect opportunity to open young minds to what many see as a fading art.

"To me it's really important to carry on and make sure that our younger audience knows about blues and bluegrass," says Dobro. "You look at all the old blues guys dying off, but you really don't see too many young blues guys coming out. If you turn one guy on you've done your job."

Dallas looks forward to the opportunity that KZSC, a noncommercial station, will provide to introduce more variety into his playlist and experiment with new ideas.

KZSC station manager Carla Brauer speaks optimistically about bringing another seasoned broadcast professional on board to rub shoulders with the station's budding college DJs.

"He'll be able to mentor a lot of our student programmers and teach them a lot about radio," says Brauer, who was planning to wake up early and catch the first broadcast.

While Dobro will always remain a preacher for the music he loves, he humbly admits that student DJs will likely teach him just as much about the quickly evolving radio market as he can teach them about traditional broadcasting. "With podcasting and Internet radio," he admits, "it's a whole new world."

But what Dobro is most excited about is getting his damn flock back. "I miss the pig listeners something fierce," he says, "and I just want to get back on the air."

Nūz just loves juicy tips about Santa Cruz County politics.

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