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Salt Lake City radio station uses record sale to keep the music playing

Posted at 5:49 PM, Sep 07, 2023

SALT LAKE CITY — While most radio stations have moved away from vinyl records to broadcast music, one Salt Lake City radio station remains in an old school frame of mind, using vinyl, CDs and cassettes to keep the airwaves alive, although not in the way you might think.

"I'm gonna say we're the only station in Salt Lake that has turntable," said KRCL community radio midday host, Eugenie Jaffe.
 
Anyone who tunes into KRCL in the middle of the day will hear Jaffe on the mic. Among the tunes and telephone calls, listeners will also hear reminders about this weekend's big event.

KRCLs 909 Day Block Party and Record Sale on Saturday will be a unique experience where vinyls used to be how the station put music on the air. They have now turned to selling vinyls to keep that same music going.

"KRCL has long done a record sale and we asked the community and we asked our listeners to bring in albums that maybe they've forgotten about," said Jaffe. "And, wow, did the community deliver."

The station wants to get those records into the hands of new people who want to listen to them. It'll happen at the sale being held from noon to 6 p.m. at 509 West 300 North.

As KRCLs summer intern, Quinn Shumway has been going through every single album donated.

"People enjoy the physical item that it is. You know, a lot of the time, it just sounds better than digital music. Vinyl sounds better. Period," she said.

Some have been strange. Some classics. Others extremely valuable like "Sticky Fingers" from the Rolling Stones with a zipper built right in.

But the rarest donation has been a first pressing of Led Zeppelin II with a heavy bass mix that made turntables skip.
 
"My goodness. It's just unbelievably rare," explained Shumway. 

But whether searching for a personal Holy Grail or Grateful Dead, each vinyl album, CD or cassette sold is another song played for the community radio station 43 years in the making.

"We are your neighbors," said Jaffe. "We are what's connecting you."

"If you come and buy even a $10 dollar record here, that's a donation to this station to continue to support the community for another 40-50 years," Shumway said. "You're making a big difference if you come and buy something."