By Hailey Escobar
In one of the large studios of 88.5 WMNF, Associate Producer and one of the radio hosts of Live Music Showcase Mildred Mattos stands before a mic off to the side, her hair coiffed in a Rosie the Riveter style up-do. In front of her, the young Tampa-based The Reality play their blues and funk influenced songs while three cameras record the intimate concert that’s being broadcast. This is a first for the members of the band Dan Jones, Caleb Bone and Logan Charles III, but not their first time hearing about the show, being friends with past guests such as No Need.
According to Program Director Randy Wind, The Live Music Showcase has been a staple of WMNF for 25 years lead after a programmer decided to invite bands onto his show. About 20 years ago, the program was taken over by one of the station’s founders Bill Dudley who, Wind stated, “gave it more professionalism with it mainly focusing on folk music.” However, the Showcase’s sound has gotten more diverse within the last several years. The broadcast now brings listeners a wide variety of local touring talent from the bay area, never settling for just one genre.
“That’s the beauty of the Live Music Showcase and my favorite thing is that not one band resembles another,” said Mattos. “That way everybody gets a taste of something they never knew they wanted to listen to.”
The Showcase airs Fridays at 2 PM on 88.5 FM. It is normally hosted by Dudley and Mattos, with Mark Perfetti behind the soundboard and whole cast of people making the program possible. Videos of the broadcast can also be found on the station’s YouTube channel.
If you are a band that would like to apply to be on the show then email the program’s producer Steve Arduengo at firstname.lastname@example.org and if you are a listener wanting to contact the show call 813-239-9663.