5. The 1980s: Settling Down


The decade started with questions and conflict. KBOO staff and Program Committee planned to review all KBOO programming in the first six months of the decade. In the March 1980 program guide, Station Manager Michael Wells writes “KBOO needs to have a way of improving and choosing between programs.” This was seemingly supported and opposed equally by KBOO volunteers. For instance, Jazz Rap host George Page disliked everything “being cubicalized into music OR public affairs OR black programming…”

 Financially there were many ups and downs over the decade. Reagan era and a turn to conservative government brought additional KBOO listeners and members, but many of those members left when the economic recessions hit. Over the years, KBOO raised money through membership drives, the Boo Ball, other events, grants, and on-air auctions.

 The mid 1980s KBOO received permission to expand the air signal and by the end of the decade was broadcasting in stereo, with CD players in the air room, and at increased power - from 12,500 to 23,440 watts.

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