April 18th, 2012

iAm iSaid

Ask the right people the right questions, and...

KINK 101.9 FM*, a station I've listened to since the mid-90s, had a long-running program called Lights Out -- music from 10:00 p.m. to midnight that was both soothing and musically compelling. Not just drones, in other words. I liked listening to it to go to sleep; in my night-owl moments I liked listening to it just because (though I made sure not to drive to it!).

The station first curtailed the program -- cutting it back to just Sunday night (when it used to be on from Sunday to Thursday) -- then canceled it. I've missed it. As far as I can tell from my digging through the site, there's no longer an online feed of Lights Out either, even if that were a good use of my internet connection (still dial-up, you may be shocked to know).

The station, however, is good at making CDs. It has a fantastic run of live CDs that it started releasing in 1998; I have all 14, and as 13 of the 14 CDs so far have sold out, that can be an accomplishment. (KINK Live 3 includes Richard Thompson playing "1952 Vincent Black Lightning." The station gets gooooooood performances; singers like the station and like visiting it.) KINK also issued 11 total Lights Out discs over the years, starting in the mid-80s with an LP. I'd never gotten any of those; maybe they're hard to find now.

But the station itself has them. I know; I asked, thanks to the power of email.

Asking the right questions of the right people, and having a checkbook and the willingness to use it, led to me detouring to KINK's offices in the PacWest Tower downtown today after work, visiting briefly with the nice Alpha Broadcasting** front-desk woman, and getting the three most recent Lights Out CDs (9, 10, and 11) hand-delivered by David, one of the people who helped me.

Thank you! These discs will have a good home.

* The station embraces its call letters, which it's had since going on-air December 1968 as "KINK, Your Underground Link." One time a few years ago, a station DJ said (with a smile in his voice) "You can always go to our website, KINK.FM. Do not go to Kink.com; that site has nothing to do with music."

** OK, fuller disclosure, I've been maddened by Alpha Broadcasting decisions before -- though the people from The Rick Emerson Show and The Cort and Fatboy Show recovered from that firing just fine -- but! I want to give the company props for hiring Byron Beck to co-host a nightly show, Beck and Burns, on its news station KXL 101.1 FM.