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Interim host keeps the Current’s Duluth music show rolling

Andrea Swensson is serving as guest host of The Duluth Local Show on the Current. (Photo by Leslie Plesser)

The Duluth Local Show, a weekly one-hour radio program featuring music by Duluth-area musicians, will close out 2018 in a transition phase. Mike Novitzki, who had hosted the show since May 2016, announced his resignation in October and his farewell episode aired Dec. 2.

Andrea Swensson, a Moose Lake native who has been an on-air personality and writer at St. Paul-based Minnesota Public Radio’s the Current since 2005, has served as guest host of The Duluth Local Show since Novitzki’s departure. She is also the regular host of an all-Minnesota music show with a similar title, The Local Show.

“The Duluth Local Show is a natural extension of our curiosity about the Twin Ports scene, and a challenge to ourselves and our listeners,” Swensson wrote in an email to Perfect Duluth Day. “Is there enough music being made in the North Country to fill up an hour-long program each and every week? The answer has been a resounding yes.”

Swensson said the goal of the program is to honor the history of the Duluth music community while keeping an eye toward the future by highlighting emerging artists.

The Duluth Local Show is broadcast on Sundays from 8 to 9 p.m. on three Duluth satellite stations of the Current — 90.9, 94.1 and 104.3 FM. It does not air in the Twin Cities market, but is on the Local Current stream on Mondays at 2 p.m. and archived at thecurrent.org.

Mike Novitzki, former host of The Duluth Local Show, is traveling in South America with his brother. (Photo via the Current)

Novitzki left the show to embark on an open-ended road trip to South America with his brother. As of Dec. 16 the two were in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

“I have made the difficult decision to vacate my position at the Current, the best employer in radio,” Novitzki wrote in the blog post announcing his resignation.

The Current Duluth Facebook page shared a link to an online application on Oct. 23 seeking a host for the show. Swensson told PDD the search is being wrapped up and a new host will be announced in early 2019.

Swensson said the Current is committed to recognizing Duluth’s “unique and vibrant” music scene.

“It’s been an honor and a fun challenge to step in as interim host and do my best to keep up with the latest Duluth music from my post in the Twin Cities,” Swensson wrote. “I’ve already learned a ton — like how good the new Coyote album is, out this January — and I hope listeners have enjoyed coming along for the ride.”

Prior to the 2016 revamping when Novitzki took over, the original host of The Duluth Local Show was Walter Raschick, aka Walt Dizzo. He launched the program in March 2013 and continued as host for two years. During that time the program was streamed on the Local Current, but not broadcast over the airwaves. The Current launched its first Duluth relay station in 2016 on low-power 90.9 FM. Broadcasts on the full-power frequencies at 104.3 and 94.1 FM began in 2017.

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