University Pulse Radio hosts online concert series to support the community through music

With the closing of much of campus, the transition to online classes and the end of the semester nearing, many of the university organizations have found themselves scrambling to readjust.

University Pulse Radio, Boise State’s student-run independent radio station, sought to meet the needs of the community on campus as well as the broader local area by hosting a series of online concerts while many self-isolate.

Madisun Grindell, senior media arts major and music director for University Pulse Radio, said there were many events and experiences that led up to the idea of hosting live concerts while everyone is confined to their homes.

Their team felt the loss of Treefort being postponed and campus closing down, yet they wanted to finish the semester strong and support the community through the use of music.

“Our talented community met us with very quick, if not immediate responses,” Grindell said. “The artists and musicians were thrilled at the idea of connecting with Boise State to share their talents with the community.”

There have been two concerts already this month, with the third and final concert kicking off finals week on May 4 at 7 p.m.

“Our experience with each quarantine session is that they continue to draw a larger crowd each week,” Grindell said. “Personally, I think this speaks volumes to the team’s overall performance and the accomplishment of our goal. The result has been a chain reaction of involvement and encouragement.”

According to Grindell, it has been a very empowering experience thus far, especially as a student-run independent radio, and they have seen an extensive amount of cooperation from the community.

The success of this online quarantine concert series is shown by the growing number of viewers each session.

Erin Kerr, a junior psychology major, loves the idea of the online concerts and plans on listening to the next one that will be broadcasted.

Kerr was a volunteer producer for University Pulse Radio last semester and recently accepted the job of music director for the upcoming academic year. According to Kerr, music is especially important and helpful during these trying times.

“I love that we’re reaching out via music,” Kerr said. “There are a lot of confusing emotions going around and I think music allows us to really feel them, however uncomfortable or sad.”

Red Light Challenge will be playing the final show of the series on May 4. The band consists of two brothers, Sean and Kyle Luster, both Boise State alumni.

The brothers have toured all over the country and performed over 500 shows in the western region of the United States over the last four years.

Although COVID-19 has put an abrupt halt on the lives of many, the Luster brothers are trying to use this time to write new music and remain optimistic.

“Our number one priority is that everyone is safe and healthy, and that’s why it’s cool to do this concert for Boise State,” Kyle Luster said. “Hopefully everyone enjoys it and experiences the positivity, especially during finals week.”

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