Music junky, disc jockey

For two hours every Tuesday, Gabriel Crawford is a jazz master, sharing his love of the genre with listeners on WUSC-FM. He prepares for his weekly show – “Swing Swang Swung” – the way a professor prepares for class.

“I research and read a lot of books about jazz. I really just love the genre,” says Crawford. “I try to represent the history of jazz in a two-hour period.”

Each show is a forward progression from the oldest jazz he can dig up in the University of South Carolina’s 100,000-CD radio library to more modern music.

A native of Columbia, Crawford is a real “music junky,” playing several instruments, composing and playing in two local bands: one focused on original music, the other covering popular songs.

The art studio senior plans to earn his living as a graphic designer but plans to keep his hand in the music world.

“I want to do radio as maybe a night job or a side job,” he says. “Something even as small as Internet radio would make me happy.”

As a freshman, Crawford saw WUSC, as “a way to get free old and obscure music.” Four years later, he says WUSC was some of the most fun he had at college.

“We have a really great community,” he says. “It’s kind of like a fraternity, but specifically for people who know and love local music.”

Their dedication is paying off: WUSC has been named one of top 10 college radio stations in the U.S. by MTVu and is in the running for Woodie Award from the music television network.

“We’ve been trying to get that for a while,” Crawford says. “It means we’re a real radio station.”

Listen and vote

You can hear Gabriel Crawford’s “Swing Swang Swung” from 2 to 4 p.m. every Tuesday on WUSC (90.5 FM). You also can help Crawford and WUSC win an MTVu Woodie Award by voting online for your favorite college radio station.

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