10 things to know about … 91.3 WTSR

10 things to know about … 91.3 WTSR

Music is a universal language, and no one proves that more than the DJs at 91.3 WTSR, who, over the years, have all had one thing in common: “An obsessive love of music and wanting to discover more,” says Kevin Potucek, the general manager since 2002. It’s that kind of passion that has grown the station from three turntables and a microphone in 1958 to one of the top college radio stations in the Garden State.

  1. The original call letters were WTSC, for Trenton State College. But when the station received its first FCC license in 1966, the name was already taken, so it got official FM status under the letters WTSR (Trenton State Radio and later TCNJ Student Radio).

  2. WTSR broadcasts at 1,500 radiated watts with a listening radius that extends about 25 miles from the campus studios located in the basement of Kendall Hall (a long way from its initial 10-watt, half-mile radius).

  3. The weekly listening cume — the number of different people who listen for at least five minutes in a quarter hour — is about 100,000 listeners.

  4. Today, WTSR is 100% student run, with Potucek serving as a sounding board for the leadership team, including a station manager, operations manager, and program director.

  5. DJs have to prove their FCC knowledge with a set of tests before they’re trusted with on-air time. Hint: Don’t swear!

  6. In addition to student programming, the station relies on more than a dozen community volunteers. One of those volunteers, a DJ known as Ms. Sue Ms. Sue, has been on the air since 1976.

  7. Prior to 2004, those looking for late-night tunes were out of luck. “The station didn’t have computers to play music all night,” says Potucek. “At 1 a.m., somebody would literally turn the radio station off.” WTSR now broadcasts 24/7 and can be streamed online. Listen live at wtsr.org.

  8. The station was built on alternative music. “When that term first started, it was basically rock music that wasn’t being played on commercial radio,” says Potucek. “The goal of the station was to find new music you couldn’t hear elsewhere.”

  9. One of the bands that got their start on WTSR was R.E.M. “On one of their tours, they specifically reached out to us because they knew that we were a station that promoted them early on,” Potucek says.

  10. WTSR’s slogan, “Open Your Mind,” was the result of a contest the station sponsored in 1996. If you know who penned it, tell us at magazine@tcnj.edu.

Picture: Peter Murphy

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