New radio show brings alternative music to Kaua‘i’s airwaves

For fans of alternative rock music, not many local radio stations can satisfy their musical taste. But Jody Valente (aka Supa Pidgin), Chris Tennberg (CT) and Miguel Graham (Migs) are trying to change that.

The trio hosts The SURF’s new radio show, Kaua‘i Kine, an hour-long show that can be heard at 7 p.m. Thursdays on 95.9 and 103.9 FM on the North Shore.

The show, which debuted Aug. 18, is a mashup of alternative, rock and reggae music.

“Over the last several years, (Kalapaki Joe’s) has played an eclectic, — eclectic for Kaua‘i anyway — genre of music,” said Jody Valente, owner of Kalapaki Joe’s. “People were very stoked about the music, simply because everywhere you go, you hear the typical Hawaiian music. People are excited about what we play, and comment regularly that they can’t listen to it on the radio.”

That inspired the group to host an hour-long show.

“We wanted to hear the music,” Valente said. “We want to get our point across and we want people to hear it. It has to do with a passion for the music that drives us. There’s no pay, all passion.”

Tennberg, a professor at Kaua‘i Community College and member of the rock band Alyson’s Anthem, and Graham, owner of Kama‘aina Surf and Sport, teamed up with Valente to share their expertise on air.

“The three of us go back together to our surf years, way back when we were teenagers,” Valente said. “Funny enough, we like the same kind of music.”

In between songs, Tennberg pauses to talk about new music and upcoming concerts, while Graham gives surf updates. The hosts also allow room for listeners to weigh in on heated debates, including which is better — SPAM or Vienna sausage?

Not having any background in the radio industry, the trio decided to try an hour-long variety show. The group was adamant on being on a radio station that would let them play their favorite musicians, including Rage Against the Machine, Social Distortion, Jimmy Eat World and Pepper.

“It’s a totally different Kaua‘i radio show,” he said. In its first couple of broadcasts, the trio has interviewed musicians and athletes.

Valente said the trio hopes the show will help bring concerts to Kaua‘i.

“None of us are Augie T, where we are comedians,” Valente said. “We are more entertainers.”

While Valente stays conscious of not turning the show into an ad for their businesses, he hopes to bring in athletes and UFC fighters who come to Kalapaki Joe’s on air with them.

“It’s just another effort to give people something different that Kaua‘i isn’t getting in addition to the music.”

As for the origins of Supa Pidgin?

“To be honest with you, our first demo we recorded, my character came out as Jody V and I was doing my act in pidgen. We decided, ‘Eh, nah, not really,’” Valente said.

Catch the Kauai Kine radio show at 7 p.m. Thursdays on The SURF 95.9 and 103.9 FM on the North Shore. For more information about the show, visit Kaua‘i Kine’s Facebook page.

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