A Sincere Thank You for Your Support

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A Sincere Thank You for Your Support

And for making us an outpost of community in an otherwise fragmented world.

The bandstand at Cinema Under the Stars on Feb. 29, 2024, just minutes before Luther Hughes and the Cannonball-Coltrane Project took the stage to cap-off our month-long celebration of the Coltrane Legacy back in February. These events, where we come together over food, drink, and music — as a community — don’t happen without your appetite for them. For so many reasons, we need them more now than ever; your dedicated and continued support makes it all possible. Photo by Chad Fox.

By Matt Silver

Hey there, Jazz88ers. It's been a whirwind of a last ten days, but we made it. The 2024 Spring Membership Drive has concluded. We welcomed new members — some had been listening for years and chose this week to take that next step; some, like one woman I remember speaking with who was in town visiting from North Carolina, were excited to find something new that they might now make part of their everyday lives. And we heard from many familiar names who've been riding with us for all or part of the last 50 years.

Stations like KSDS should be proud of their history, but they should be even more proud that they exist in a present media and cultural landscape where the climate is a good deal less hospitable than the one we're lucky enough to live in here in San Diego.

I'd like to share a little anecdote with you. On Saturday night, a close friend of mine volunteered to answer phones and take pledges while I joined Ron Dhanifu in the studio for "Saturday Night Blues Ball." Though a music lover, she'd been unfamiliar with KSDS and what our community is all about. She was astonished by the casual, comfortable camaraderie that prevails between and among KSDS staff and extends, unabridged, to our members and volunteers who give so generously of their time and love for music and community during our pledge drives. She said something that, while grandiose, was touching for the amount of truth contained within.

Here's the abridged version: "I can see why you like going there so much. You can be more or less yourself there." She added this: "You guys are trying to save history. It's real noble."

KSDS members share a pre-concert meal at Lefty’s Chicago Pizzeria in Mission Hills before taking in Luther Hughes and the Cannonball-Coltrane Project presented, with your support, by KSDS. Feb. 29, 2024. Photo by Chad Fox

There's been a lot of heady writing the last few years about how technological advancement — "innovation" — has made us turn inward to look for communities in "virtual spaces," how our relationships with our neighbors and those we share physical space with in our communities have become more superficial, more antiseptic. With traditional venues for civic and community engagement either eroding or already eroded, people who take very seriously the job of thinking hard about this particular strain of the postmodern dilemma wonder what's left to fill what feels like a vacuum.

And what my friend loved most about spending an evening doing something as simple as answering phones and taking pledges is that Jazz 88.3 KSDS FM San Diego feels like an exception to that — and maybe, if we're at our best, an antidote. So when we say we're keeping jazz and blues alive, that's true. But maybe that's not the whole story. Maybe we're preserving something much more spiritually essential.

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