KCRW has no bad volunteers. All of them are smart, dedicated, passionate people. That’s why it’s a little tough to single one out every month, but then there are people like Samantha (just Sam to us). She just effortlessly stands out. With her hard work and sunny disposition to boot, how could we not notice her? Get to know her!
Where did you grow up and are you an only child?
I am originally from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. For the most part I grew up there, but I moved to Los Angeles when I was 16 to pursue a career in music.
What is your current occupation?
I’m a vocalist and songwriter. Most recently, I was featured on the posthumous album Eye Legacy from Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes. I run a small business called The Sambalaya Shoppe – a moniker under which I do freelance vocal and audio engineering work.
What is your fantasy occupation?
If I can continue to grow my business, and work for KCRW while doing it, that’s the fantasy. As an older woman, I want to own my own recording facility in New Orleans in the French Quarter, and sit on the balcony griping down at the young an unruly tourists.
When did you first discover KCRW?
I discovered KCRW right after I moved to Los Angeles about 8 years ago. A music technology instructor of mine mentioned that “NPR” played some really great music at night and that I should check it out. Ever since then, the dial has been permanently fixed to 89.9.
How did you find your way to our station for volunteering?
About four years ago I began my quest to volunteer for the station after moving close by for audio school. Naturally, I wasn’t the only one with the idea. After a random email to Henry Rollins, some cat and mouse, and a perfectly timed call back from Monika Scott, I finally was able to get my foot in the door. It’s now been six months and I couldn’t be happier.
What’s your current volunteer position and how long have you been at it?
Favorite volunteer moment?
Every live performance on Morning Becomes Eclectic that I am present for is a favorite moment, but a highlight would definitely be meeting actor Tim Robbins in the hallway and chatting by the water cooler not long ago.
If you could get on the mic and say one sentence on the air, what would it be?
“I’m Sam Blanchard sitting in for Jason Bentley and this is Morning Becomes Eclectic on 89.9, KCRW.” – But I’d happily settle for pitching during the pledge drive, I would love to do that.
What song have you hit repeat on lately?
I’ve recently been struck by Susanne Sundfor’s “White Foxes” off of The Silicone Veil.
Favorite book, movie?
Tony Kushner’s Angels in America, hands down. Originally on stage in New York, HBO made it into a miniseries in 2003. It is the most brilliant thing I’ve ever seen/heard/witnessed in my lifetime, and I’ve yet to find anything that will top it.
Favorite thing to do outside the station?
I’m somewhat of a hermit, so when I’m not at the station or having to work at a studio, I’m typically working on something at home. I love to watch bizarre indie films or depressing political documentaries on Netflix, and spending time with my boyfriend and our two chihuahuas.
What does KCRW mean to you?
I can’t even begin to express how much KCRW means to me. I dare anyone to find a public radio station that has the spirit of this one. It’s one of a kind. I came to KCRW a little beaten up from the LA experience, having kicked around the commercial music industry for the better half of my life. I’ve been very, very discouraged by what the “mainstream” entertainment business has turned into. I’ve been caught up in the revolving door of it for some time. KCRW is a beacon of hope in the music world, but in the general consciousness as well. It’s so much more than a radio station. It’s a community of people, brought together by the love of independent music and art, thought and analysis. It’s about expanding that community and inviting others to share in it. KCRW really is the epitome of a community service – entertaining, enlightening and informing those that it reaches, totally free of a corporate allegiance, without any motive of monetary gain. After living in LA for going on a decade, and after all of the ego and falseness I’ve encountered in my profession, sometimes I feel like the only sane voices are the ones radiating from 89.9. If you need to restore your faith in humanity, check out KCRW.
It’s always a little strange to ask volunteers what KCRW means to them. We’re not fishing for compliments, but rather looking to understand what draws people to generously give us their time. Someone like Sam could easily be welcomed by a plethora of worthy organizations, but she chose us. Lucky us, she warmly adds to the very humanity she mentions above.PIKA Womens Black TEYA 1 Button Short Brown Suede Fur Boots US 7 (12345690668)Markon "Quarry" Wedge Pumps 7.5WSteve Madden Womens Tillis Navy Pac Boots Shoes 5.5 Medium (B,M) BHFO 3549Khombu Womens alta spirit Closed Toe Mid-Calf Cold Weather Black Size 8.5 MJNbLIZ CLAIBORNE Black Slouchy Leather Tall High Heel MUSKET Fashion Boot Women 6.5NOCONA WOMENS 6.5 C BROWN LEATHER ROUND TOE WESTERN COWBOY BOOTS ROPERSBANANA REPUBLIC Tegan Black Genuine Leather Knee High BOOTS Wedge Heel Size 8.5 , NEW BANDOLINO BLACK BROWN LEATHER TALL BOOTS SIZE 8 M SIZE 8.5 M SIZE 10 M $149 , Carlos By Carlos Santana Womens NWB Chester Taupe Boots Shoes 8 MED NEW , Justin Womens Lime Green Tooled Leather Cowboy Boots Suede Shaft Sz 8B CowgirlPRADA Black Knotted Leather Ballet Ballerina Flats Shoes 38 1/2 EURO 8.5 USA , 6.5 - OTBT Womens Brentsville Gray Soft Leather Combat Side Zip Boots 0000MB , Tory Burch Reva White Leather Trim RaffiaBallet Flats Size 10.5BZ258 JC PLAY by JEFFREY CAMPBELL shoes multicolor glitter women slip on , TAGS GREEN GRASS COLLECTION NWOB Brown Woven Leather Golf Cleats Sz 10 B3972Nike Dual Fusion Run 2, size 7, gray and pinkMelissa Be Floc Black & Burgundy, Sneaker, court, PVC, Brazilian, SALE , New Anthropologie Faryl Robin Ellison Suede Shearling Slip On Loafers Size 6.5 , Sperry NWOT Women's Ivyfish 3-Eye Boat Shoe 6.5M STS90248 , Authentic TORY BURCH Patent Caroline Ballet Flats Sz 7 M Black Leather ShoesNIKE AIR MAX 1 PRM VAST GREY WOMEN'S SZ 9.5 NEW 454746-017Nike Roshe LD-1000 Black/Summit White-Team Orange 819843-005 Women'sCONVERSE CT AS Men's DC COMIC 'THE JOKER' Black HI-TOP SHOES - 10 / 44 , Nike Wmns Air Max Sequent 2 Running Womens Shoes Platinum Blue 852465-014 , Salomon Women's X Mission 3 Running Shoes Size 8Converse Women’s 9 All Star Chuck Taylor High Top Crochet Sneaker ShoesSkechers Slip-On SN 50134 Size US 11 Color TNBK Tan NlsvkNwob platform mid ankle high boots sz 8 lined within & edge green colorSofft Women's Brown Leather Zip Up Mid-Calf Boots US Size 8 M , Magellan Outdoors Tan/Brown/Black Suede & Leather Duck Boots Women's Sz 9 GUC ,