Student radio shows build community around music

Photo of two DJs in the KPH doorway.
Maya Mazor-Hoofien / The Mossy Log

Lewis & Clark’s very own student-run KPH Radio broadcasts around the clock, with DJs focusing their programs on topics from International Garage Rock to expressing the events and feelings of their week through song. A few DJs shared their experiences and music recommendations with us.

Global Garage

Jackson White ’26 DJs a KPH radio hour called “Global Garage,” which brings independent DIY garage rock music from all over the world to the masses. 

“I think whoever listens to your radio hour, regardless if it is friends or family, it is somebody that cares about you,” said White. 

In part, White inherited his love for independent music from his family; his dad has operated a music venue in San Francisco that has supported up-and-coming indie artists since before he was born. As a result, “Global Garage” reflects this musical background while also operating as a way for White to further explore the world of garage rock, featuring artists spanning from China to West Africa and beyond. However, emotional connection through music, both with the self and others is an equally powerful motivation to step into the booth every week. 

“(Music) has always been the artistic medium that connects most with me, makes me feel the biggest range of emotions: happy, sad, everything in between,” White said. “No matter what I’m playing, music really connects with me. And when the stars align, then I can get through to someone, even if it’s just one person.”

Tune in to “Global Garage” on Wednesdays at 5 p.m.!


Musical connection plays an even more pronounced role in the KPH Radio show “Tortellini” hosted by Isabella Mercado ’27 and her friend Deenie Bulyalert ’27. On air, the duo talks about their week and showcases tunes corresponding to their emotions and experiences. The show was previously a music-only affair, until this year when the two decided to include commentary as well. 

“Last semester our families would only listen and be like, are you going to talk or anything?” said Mercado. 

To Mercado, the KPH hour represents a comforting space for her to hang out with her friend and slow down to reflect on her week. 

“I feel like music really helps us,” Mercado said. “(It) kind of distracts us, but at the same time, it can help enhance our lives and how we’re feeling.”

Tune in to “Tortellini” every Friday at 6 p.m.!


Olivia Pickering ’27 hosts a radio spot named “Starbelly,”  so called to promote their zine of the same name. Music has always been important to them, and social connection once again plays a central role in this show. 

“It’s an excuse to play loud music with your friends and hang out, so I really like it,” said Pickering. 

Having moved from Florida, Pickering mentions how their program has supporters far beyond the bounds of Portland. 

“I have people from 20 feet away to 3,000 miles,” Pickering said. “I have friends all over, and it’s a way for me to connect with them.” 

The playlist of “Starbelly” also connects listeners to Portland’s local music scene. 

“A lot of the stuff I play on the radio are bands I’ve seen in Portland, or bands that have come to Lewis & Clark and done shows,” Pickering said.

Tune in to “Starbelly” at 9 p.m. every Thursday night!


Cole Mizutani ’26 and Andy Olson ’26 host “Unwritten” with their friend Colleen Maloney ’26. Its title is a reference to the transient nature of radio shows. They see the show as a much-needed weekly respite from the burdens of academic stress. 

“It’s about the music, which helps connect people, and I think that having that every week is special,” Mizutani said. 

The trio actively seeks to challenge themselves with their music selection and break out of their comfort zones. Olson said the connections of their show extend far beyond the walls of the booth. 

“There’s something kind of transcendent about knowing that I can picture my parents sitting in my childhood home listening to the same song that we’re playing or my sister telling me she’s listening from her college,” Olson said. “There’s a double level, it connects to you and then it connects you to other people often because of the same moments.” 

Tune in to “Unwritten” on Thursdays at 6pm!

DJ Music Recommendations

Jackson White – La femme (Band)

Isabella Mercer – White Winter Hymnal by Fleet Foxes 

Olivia Pickering – Dallas by Gouge Away 

Cole Mizutani – There It Goes by Maisie Peters

Andy Olson – These are Days by 10,000 Maniacs

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