The one-hour show on St. Paul-based Minnesota Public Radio’s the Current is broadcast on Sundays from 8 to 9 p.m. on three Duluth satellite stations — 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.
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.
Minnesota Public Radio is moving the Duluth relay of its Twin Cities album-oriented alternative music station, the Current, to full-power frequencies at 104.3 and 94.1 FM.
The switch to 104.3 is already in effect; 94.1 will be in operation later this summer.
The tower for 104.3 is in Two Harbors. Broadcasting with an effective radiated power of 50,000 watts, the signal reaches Duluth’s eastern neighborhoods, but begins to break up in the Downtown area and is marred by static in most locations southwest of Lake Avenue.
Jen Keavy, senior communications manager at MPR, said the “reach is dependent upon topography and proximity to the tower in Two Harbors, which is why we will also launch 94.1 (which is in Duluth) once technical upgrades are made. It will help cover the gaps in the Duluth area.”
MPR purchased the two stations from Red Rock Radio for $300,000 in a deal that closed May 15. Both frequencies use the call letters KZIO and were previously branded by Red Rock as 94X “pure rock.”
The Current announced in a news release today that Michael Novitzki will host its revamped version of The Duluth Local Show, which will launch May 1 on the low-power 90.9 FM and air every Sunday at 8 p.m. Also announced in the release: Cecilia Johnson has been named Local Current blogger.
Minnesota Public Radio announced in a news release today that Duluthians will soon be able to hear its album-oriented alternative music station, the Current, on 90.9 FM. A mix tape of music by artists from northern Minnesota began airing on the station today. At 9:09 a.m. on Feb. 1 the switch will flip to the Current’s live broadcast from the Twin Cities.
The low-power station will broadcast at about 99 watts, with an expected coverage area spanning from Hermantown to Superior. MPR purchased the 90.9 FM spot on the dial in 2015 from Family Stations, a national Christian network, which had aired programming as W215CG.
The MPR website recently announced a new expansion of the Current station to St. Peter. Not that I don’t love some of the stations we have around here, but it really makes me feel even further from the cultural scene to not have access to all three MPR stations. As a yearly supporter of MPR it doesn’t seem fair. If there’s anyone out there who agrees, please join me in writing to MPR to let them know how we feel.