Logo for the "Rooted Radio" playlists, which includes a radio and radish.

Rooted Radio 004

By Ciara Keegan ’20, Science Technology and Society Concentrator and Jennifer Katz ’20, Science Technology and Society Concentrator and Gender, Health, and Wellness Coordinator at the Sarah Doyle Center

Shortly before we had transferred to Brown, Ciara and I were connected by a mutual friend. I sat on the floor of the library while she spoke to me from her flat in Edinburgh. Almost immediately she brought up music and we started talking about our favorite artists and songs. It wouldn’t become as obvious until we coincidentally (fate?) were assigned as roommates during our first semester at Brown. My memories from that New Dorm double are deep shades of blue, red and purple lit by the whale shaped lamp on her bedside table with Lady Wray’s “Guilty,” Darondo’s “Didn’t I,” and Still Woozy’s “Goodie Bag” on a constant loop. 

We started our radio show, “The Now and Then” the fall of our junior year and it quickly became the highlight of my week. On Sundays we would create the collaborative playlist, piling on songs until Wednesday came along, when we would debate over the layout of the final 50 minutes. We would send it to everyone, knowing that only a couple friends and our parents would tune in. It didn’t matter. And who knows, maybe someone driving in Providence had turned the knob to 101.1 WBRU at just the right moment to hear us fangirling over Hope Tala or Radiant Children. Even during the worst moments of our semester, we made the time to lug ourselves up staircase three to the BSR studio, pressing pause on the anxiety of college that filled every hour of every day, except 10-11 pm on Wednesday nights. 

This past year we submitted to our busy-ness, living off of Wickenden we kept putting off walking all the way to campus for our show, always saying, “next week we’ll do it.” Until there were no more weeks left and we found ourselves packing up the belongings of her room before she flew to California for the foreseeable future. As I’ve put together these Rooted Radios each week, I’ve felt a strong pang of nostalgia for making these playlists together—a nostalgia that competes with regret as I mourn our senior year ending early. 

We both admit to being poor communicators, FaceTime has become exceedingly laborious as every aspect of our days have been converted to digital means. We may never be able to have our radio show at Brown anymore, but one way I know we can always stay connected is through sharing music and collaborating on playlists.

Click here to listen to the Rooted Radio 004 playlist on Spotify

Comment below: What was the last thing you recommended to a friend (it can be anything)? Why did you recommend it? How are you staying connected to your friends during this time? 

Image credit: Rooted Radio image by Katherine Sang ’21