89.1 WEMU

Molly Motherwell

General Manager

Ways to Connect

It's WEMU's 55th anniversary!

From reel to reel and razor blades to multi-track digital editing, from 78s to digital downloads, from typewriters to iPhones, WEMU has been part of our community since we signed on December 8, 1965.

In that time we have grown from a 10-watt in-dorm service for sports and news to a community mainstay with a format of NPR news and information, local news, and jazz, blues, and world music.  Thanks to streaming, WEMU is now available worldwide and has listeners across the globe.

89.1 WEMU

Today marks 55 years since 89.1 WEMU first went on the air.  On this day of on-air celebration, WEMU's news director David Fair, general manager Molly Motherwell, and weekday jazz host Michael Jewett get together to discuss WEMU's legacy and what they hope the future will bring.

Dear WEMU Friends:  Six months. It was six months ago that our community and our world changed.  Six months since we have had the opportunity to see you in person at one of our events.  Six months since we have seen our WEMU colleagues who have been broadcasting from home.  

Dear WEMU Listeners, Donors, and Friends:

A huge THANK YOU to the thousands of you who donated to WEMU over the past fiscal year.  Thanks to you, we met and exceeded our annual financial goal.

It's eerily quiet at WEMU. Those of us who are here are keeping our distance while we continue to work to keep you updated, educated, informed, and entertained.

Tomorrow is #GivingTuesday, the national day of philanthropy that follows Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday.

Thank you for listening to 89.1, WEMU.  Thanks to you, WEMU recently recorded its biggest audience ever in our 54 year history.  More than 67,000 people have listened to WEMU every week.  A community of like minded people who believe in authentic radio, independent fact-based journalism, and the cultural hub that is created with a vibrant music and arts scene.

Last January we began a yearlong celebration of 40 years of broadcasting jazz on 89.1.  And what a year it's been. We celebrated with Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and at the Detroit Music Awards with a distinguished service award. With Laith Al Saadi at our Blues Barbecue and onstage at the Detroit Jazz Festival with a special tribute.  And even with a halftime show by the EMU Marching Band.

Linda Yohn
Jessica Webster / 89.1 WEMU

It seems a little bit early to be fundraising but, here we are, right in the middle of the fall pledge drive.  By 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, September 20, we need to have raised $220,000 to keep WEMU healthy and sustainable.  You can help us by making your gift right now at 888-299-8910 or donate online.

Just One Week!

Jun 22, 2017

What a difference WEMU can make to your week… with news that keeps you connected… ideas that keep you interested… and music and conversation that brings you into the heart of the matter. One week can mean a lot to WEMU too – particularly this week!

 That’s because just one week from today, WEMU’s budget year ends and our goal right now is to raise $12,000 to hit our $100,000 summer fundraising goal.

Update: Big thanks to everyone who gave to WEMU recently. Thanks to you, we raised over $81,000 toward our goal of $100,000.

The Administration's FY 2018 budget blueprint released yesterday proposes to elimnate the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) end future funding for public broadcasting. This step by the Administration is one of the first in a long process to decide funding levels for the federal government. Ultimately,  Congress will make final decisions on continuing the annual federal investment in WEMU and the public broadcasting system. We recognize the seriousness of this moment and also know of the long-standing, bipartisan congressional support for public broadcasting.

Molly Motherwell
Towne Courier

Today I celebrate my 25th anniversary at WEMU.  It hardly seems possible.  I’m so grateful to have been given the amazing opportunity to be a part of something I love and believe in so strongly. 

Students at Eastern Michigan University gathered once again to protest the racist graffiti that was recently discovered on campus. 

89.1 WEMU, Eastern Michigan University’s public radio station won the 2015 Station of the Year award for Public Radio Group 1 at the Michigan Association of Broadcasters’ (MAB) annual Broadcast Excellence Awards ceremony Tuesday, May 4, 2016, at the Lansing Center.

WEMU also won three Best Awards for Mini Documentary or Series for the regular Wednesday feature, Issues of the Environment; Best Newscast, and for the narrative that accompanied the entry for Station of the Year consideration. 

For a gift of $100, you and a guest will receive film tickets for two to see a special screening of Miles Ahead Ann Arbor premier, plus admission to a special pre-show reception at the Necto Nightclub (across from Michigan Theater) from 5 to 6:30 p.m on Thursday, April 21, 2016. The reception will feature light snacks, a cash bar, music from Big Fun, a 5 piece band led by Mark Kirschenman and Stephen Rush, and a special souvenir ($50 for one ticket and admission if you're unable to commit to a pair of tickets).

March Madness takes many forms; from spring fever to the NCAA basketball tournament.  At WEMU, March Madness means pledge time.  It's Day Three of WEMU's spring on air pledge drive and we are looking for your pledge of financial support so we can win OUR bracket - the one that brings you outstanding local news, the best of the best in jazz and blues, and superb national perspective from NPR every single day.

To the WEMU/Eastern Michigan University community:

On behalf of WEMU, please accept my sincere apology for the UM-centric Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me live show last evening.  We are extremely disappointed in the overall focus of last night’s production and have expressed our serious concerns to the program’s management.

We are halfway through our yearlong 50th anniversary celebration.  Thanks to everyone who has attended one of our events, pledged for our commemorative 50th anniversary tile, and otherwise helped us to mark this historic year. We are delighted to partner with the Ann Arbor Summer Festival for one of the signature events of WEMU’s 50th anniversary celebration: the return of NPR’s wacky and irreverent news quiz, Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me! to Ann Arbor on October 1 in Hill Auditorium.  Tickets for the show have been sold out for months. But, because you are a friend of WEMU, we an option available just for you. This event has sold out and there are no tickets available!

YPSILANTI: 89.1 WEMU, Eastern Michigan University’s public radio station, presents its 50th anniversary signature event, a live recording of NPR’s Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me! Thursday, October 1, at 7:30 p.m. in Hill Auditorium on the University of Michigan campus.  The performance is co-presented by the Ann Arbor Summer Festival.

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89.1 WEMU-FM

It's fundraising time at WEMU and we are asking you to rise to the challenge and help shrink WEMU's pledge drive.  Our goal this spring is $200,000 and here's the deal.  As soon as we reach the midpoint of $100,000 we will stop fundraising until Monday morning.   Just stop entirely.

Today we are announcing that veteran Detroit broadcaster Lisa Barry has joined the WEMU news team as the local anchor for NPR’s All Things Considered (weekdays, 4-7 p.m.).

Vote For WEMU!

Oct 17, 2014

Analysts predict the cost of the 2014 election will exceed billions of dollars. Most of these dollars are being spent advertising in print, on television and radio, and online.  I know my inbox has been flooded with campaign ads and fundraising appeals and yours probably has too. Beyond the election advertising we are also bombarded by an endless news coverage cycle of sound bites, quips, spin and misstatements.    

Linda Yohn
W. Streety

89.1, WEMU’s Music Director, Linda Yohn, Wins National Jazz Programmer Of The Year For The Fifth Time

   89.1 WEMU’s Music Director, Linda Yohn, was named ‘Jazz Programmer of the Year,’ in a major market Friday, August 8, at the JazzWeek Summit's annual awards dinner in San Jose, CA.   This is the fifth programmer of the year award for Yohn who was nominated  in 2006 and 2008 and won four years  in a row; 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012.  She was nominated again in 2013 and won again in 2014

This Is It

Mar 21, 2014

Dear WEMU Friends:    This is it.  The last day of  WEMU's Spring Pledge Drive.  More than $140,000 has been pledged since March 13; if yours was among them, please accept our grateful thanks.  If you have not yet made your gift to WEMU, please do so now to help us raise the last $58,000.

 It will take a record day to meet that last chunk of our goal but we have been here before and we have been successful.

Get Involved

Oct 17, 2013

Two years ago, jazz trumpeter, Terence Blanchard stood in front of members of the southeast Michigan jazz community to talk about his role as the artist-in-residence for the Detroit Jazz Festival.  He marveled at how, in the face of so many challenges, the Detroit Jazz Festival had remained so viable when many other festivals had gone under.

What resonated with me is that he said that in order for this free festival to continue, its stakeholders had to get involved.

Dear Friend of WEMU:

In January of 2011, WEMU took a leap of faith. We promised EMU that we could cut our general fund budget by $250,000 over three years to help offset the 15% cut to higher education the University was facing from the state. We were confident that WEMU’s listeners would step up to the challenge and help offset that cuts that we incurred. And, so far, you have. In 2012 we were able to offset that $50,000 with increased donations from listeners. This year WEMU took a $100,000 cut to our general fund appropriation.

With two strong pledge drives in fall and spring, we are again poised make it up through listener and corporate contributions. But, we can’t do it without your financial gift. We have until June 25 to raise approximately $35,000. $35,000 that goes directly to the programs and people you count on from WEMU. $35,000 that helps us maintain our daily operations and our strong focus on community through local news and local music programming. Without that $35,000 we will be faced with some tough decisions.

Will we be able to continue to bring you the specialty music programs you look forward to each weekend? Will we be able to remain live on weekday evenings? Or will we be forced to go to syndicated programming, which may fill the hours with music, but that lacks the soul, vibrancy, and community connection you get with WEMU? 

As the year comes to a close, it’s a tradition to both look back and anticipate what lies ahead. I’m excited to share just a few highlights that your support of WEMU made possible in 2012, and with your continued support, what’s ahead in 2013.

  •  2012 had the most expensive Presidential election in history.  WEMU brought you thoughtful and thorough coverage throughout the election cycle, not only on the national level but on the state and local levels as well.
  •  WEMU covered Washtenaw County  more throroughly than any other local station; from city council to county commssion, from the devastating Dexter tornado to the record-breaking summer heat wave, from transit to traffic.  WEMU will continue to be your best and most trusted local news source in 2013.
  • WEMU was in your community; onstage at the Ann Arbor Summer Festival, marching in the Fourth of July Parade, hosting free 5:01 Jazz shows in downtown Ann Arbor, running shuttle buses to the Detroit Jazz Festival and so much more.

We know you are asked to support many worthy organizations at this time of year. Please take a moment to consider the value that WEMU adds to your life and to the life of the community. Your tax-deductible year-end gift will go a long way toward helping us achieve our goals in the coming year.

 Please make your secure online gift at wemu.org by clicking the green DONATE button. 

On behalf of the staff of WEMU and our public radio partners, I wish you a joyful holiday season, thank you for your support this year, and look forward to serving you in 2013.