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Joe Kendrick

Director of Programming and Operations

Joe Kendrick grew up far off in the woods at in rural Stanfield, NC, where he acquired his first Sony Walkman, listened to both AM and FM radio from Charlotte, went to Nascar races at Charlotte Motor Speedway, attended a small Baptist church, read Rolling Stone, subscribed to cassette clubs, and played one very forgettable season of high school football. From there, Joe studied Journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was able to fulfill his dream of being a disc jockey at WXYC. He volunteered at WNCW soon after graduation.

After several years and two stints in radio on the coast in Wilmington, Joe was back in western NC where he returned  to volunteering at WNCW while he started his first business, a landscape lighting franchise with Outdoor Lighting Perspectives. In 1999, he met his future wife Amy at the Isotope 217 concert at Vincent's Ear in Asheville, and a year later they wed. The landscape lighting business grew but so did Joe's presence on the radio, and the desire to follow his heart led him to sell his business in 2006. Soon thereafter, he garnered the morning host slot on WNCW and has been full time in Spindale ever since.

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  • A timeless tale of amorous yearning gets a summertime spin.
  • Ahead of The Jayhawks' performance at Pisgah Brewing Company in Black Mountain, NC on June 26th, WNCW's Joe Kendrick talked with founding member Gary Louris. In this wide-ranging conversation, Gary touches on everything from his love of the outdoors to his memories of the heyday of the Minneapolis music scene in the 1980s. Gary gets to play DJ as well, picking out one of his favorite Jayhawks songs to close out the interview.
  • Despite the addition of a dulcimer, the supergroup's new song leaves behind the old-world feel that defined its debut.
  • There may never be an episode of Southern Songs and Stories featuring music as far flung as this one, and at the same time there may never be an episode with a storyline that is so unexpectedly close knit. It started out by bringing together two artists I knew but who did not know each other, and who have differing styles of music. Then came a serendipitous revelation that set the stage for a great conversation, and concluded with another surprise when both artists picked a mutual favorite song to talk about in this Three Song Set, one from Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou, whom you probably know better as George Michael.
  • It is always heartwarming to witness the spirit of generosity that is central to so many music artists. When you come across musicians who are not only kind but also are incredibly talented and well spoken, magic can happen. All of these things came together when Alexa Rose and Joseph Terrell came to WNCW’s Studio B in early November, 2021, where they played a live session and then stayed for extra innings to record a conversation for this episode.
  • There are few people working in the music business today that can say that they have worked in several of its eras. Rick Miller, Mary Huff and Dave Hartman are three who can, having started out in a time when radio airplay was the first step in becoming known outside of their hometown of Chapel Hill, NC. Back then, in the mid to late 1980s, getting your music in the hands of your fans meant you would make cassettes, 45s or LPs. At first, you would make them via the DIY route, sending those out to small regional record labels and select radio stations, usually radio stations in towns where you had some foothold by having played shows there and already being on that music scene’s radar. Once your band got airplay on radio (typically college radio), you would leverage that along with your successful shows to get picked up by an indie label, and keep going from there. Essentially, this is how Southern Culture on the Skids began. Many others did not make it past this era, but they did.
  • Jeremy Pinnell seems to find himself most comfortable in settings filled with high degrees of difficulty. Find out about his life story and his remarkable third album in this episode of Southern Songs and Stories.
  • Writing songs is seldom easy. But for Amanda Anne Platt, writing songs seems free of anxiety. In fact, keeping a journal and writing songs is her way of processing life. Whereas we might take a walk or talk to a friend to decompress after long hours of doing the hard things, Amanda would likely take those hard things and put them into a melody, melodies which we can in turn crank up on the ride home to loosen up from our static filled day. Joe spoke with Amanda at the Albino Skunk Music Festival in Greer, South Carolina when she and the Honeycutters performed in the late spring of 2021. Included here is their conversation as well as excerpts from the new collection titled Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea as well as a live performance from Skunk Fest.
  • Andrew and Emily talk about their new album and making music the most honest way they know how, the Venn diagram of Watchhouse music which overlaps with both The Stanley Brothers and Pantera, how they have yet to cross the event horizon that could pull them into Nashville, and much more.
  • Joe Kendrick writes about Ric Robertson's new music for NPR's #NowPlaying blog, which publishes song reviews from contributors and member stations here.