Station Blog

Typically at this time of year, WEMU presents its annual State of the Station message at a special breakfast for key stakeholders, elected officials, and major donors. Since we're unable to do that in person this year, we've shared it here.

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 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.

A Message From Daniel Long

Jun 29, 2020

Hey everyone, Daniel Long, host of the Groove Yard on Sundays and the Groove Break on Mondays. 2020 has been one wild ride, and WEMU has been by your side throughout it all. COVID-19 has impacted each of us in different ways, and WEMU has been there to help keep you informed at a local and state level. When loneliness and claustrophobia set in during the stay-home-stay-safe order, WEMU lifted you up with music to fill your soul with joy and beauty. And in an age of social unrest around the disparities in communities of color, WEMU uplifts and amplifies Black voices through the Black American musical tradition.

The blues has a long and rich tradition and Southeast Michigan and WEMU have been part of that tradition for over 50 years. Clubs, festivals and radio have made our area a blues hotspot. Now a different kind of hotspot threatens all that history. Clubs are closed, Festivals cancelled and Covid 19 threatens blues on the radio, too.

A Message From Marc Taras

Jun 27, 2020

"You may not recognize me, but I work for you!"


This is the honest greeting which I have offered audiences at live music events where I have had the pleasure and privilege of being the MC over the last few years. It's literally true. Listener support provides the salaries of all of our "live and local" weekend music hosts...Wendy Wright (From Memphis To Motown), Jeremy Baldwin (The Roots Music Project), Nik Thompson (The Sunday Best), Daniel Long (In The Groove Yard), Jessica Webster (The In Crowd), and Joe Tiboni (The Big City Blues Cruise): we ALL work for you. And we are happily honored to do that thing! 

A Message From David Fair

Jun 26, 2020

I've been working in news since since 1989. Every one of those 31 years in radio have been spent in Washtenaw County, 26 of them here at 89.1 WEMU. Never... and I mean never...have we had a year like 2020 and we're only half-way through. Never has LOCAL radio been so important. We have a lot to talk about in the months and years ahead but we are in the midst of massive change. It is my mission to have those conversations and to help bring you the information you can use to help guide those changes in your homes, neighborhoods and communities. The scope of that mission is largely determined by you. 

A Message From Jorge Avellan

Jun 24, 2020

As a journalist, I can’t emphasize enough the need for local news coverage. During a time when newsrooms continue to shrink or close across the country, WEMU is providing you with the local coverage you need to stay informed about the issues impacting our community.  

Hi! Lisa Barry here... your local host of All Things Considered here on 89.1 WEMU, and of Art and Soul and many other local community conversations.


In fact, the WEMU team and I have been working extra hard during the pandemic to connect you with the bright minds and health experts we're lucky to have in our community to share the latest and wisest information and advice to stay safe, healthy, and reassured at this trying time.  And now, as we watch racial unrest rising, and our community’s response, I have put a lot of thought and time and effort into giving voice to those who need to be heard in hopes of bringing about peace, hope and change.

The past few months have been like nothing most of us have ever lived through, pretty much. But WEMU has still been here day in and day out. We're still keeping you informed, connected to our community, and inspired with great music. 

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.

Hi WEMU friends.

Here we are at day five of the fall pledge drive, and with your help we're working hard to make sure your community NPR station is healthy and strong and able to continue to deliver on our promise of keeping you informed and entertained. We need to raise $220,000 during this drive, and you can make that happen with your gift of support at or 888-299-8910.

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.

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.).