Jacob Mabray says listen local


Mabray sits in the WEVL studio as he selects music for his next show. Courtesy of Mallory Prater

Radio stations can be annoying, playing what seems like the same five songs plus endless advertisements. But other radio stations offer awesome music and fewer commercials. One of Memphis’s best local radio stations is WEVL.

“It stands for ‘we volunteer’. There are no ads. It is supported entirely by people donating money,” said White Station senior Jacob Mabray.

Mabray is involved in one of WEVL’s shows, My Morning Mixtape. Mabray makes a playlist of the music he is currently listening to, and they play it on the radio.

“I go in on Mondays and record an hour’s worth of music to be played Tuesday, from 8 to 9 a.m.”

“I play alternative, indie rock.” Mabray plays artists such as Vampire Weekend, the Black Keys, the White Stripes, Lana del Ray, Phoenix, and Arcade Fire.

The type of music on WEVL varies, though. There are multiple shows, and each plays different kind of music. Schedules can be found at wevl.org

Mabray first interned at WEVL in eighth grade.

“It was my dad’s favorite radio station, and then I had an internship project there while I was at Grace St. Luke’s. I started the show two years ago,” he said.

For Mabray, the experience is not all about playing music. He moves boxes, organizes CD’s, and helps prepare for events. Because WEVL is a non-profit organization, he does not get paid.

Mabray’s work is mostly behind the scenes, since WEVL does not allow speakers under twenty five.

“My friends still think it’s really cool, but they never listen because they are at school. My parents listen to it every time,” said Mabray.

Although we may not always be able to listen to Mabray’s music, we can support WEVL by tuning in during our morning and afternoon commutes or through their fall and spring pledge drives. Right now, WEVL has already raised $72,496 through donations.

Mabray believes that students “should support their local radio show to keep it running, and hopefully donate.”

“I like music and I like sharing my music with others. I get to play my music on my favorite station and share it with everyone, while supporting something local,” Mabray said.