Film — May 12, 2022 at 8:45 am

See first trailer for “35,000 Watts: The Story of College Radio” — and help fund documentary

A team of filmmakers this week debuted the first teaser trailer for “35,000 Watts: The Story of College Radio,” a documentary they say will tell “the untold story of college radio brought to life by the students behind the mic and the bands they made famous” — and they’re looking for help funding the project.

Director Michael Millard, a veteran of Texas Tech’s KTXT-FM, and producers Maggie Contreras and John Bernstein have begun work on the documentary, filming interviews with college radio veterans and musicians including members of the Pixies, Bratmobile and the Apples in Stereo.

Now they’re asking people whose lives were impacted by college radio to help them raise $50,000 through a just-launched Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign to expand and continue their work.

Of the project, the filmmakers write:

Where does your mind go when you hear that minor chord at the top of Jane’s Addiction’s “Been Caught Stealing” or the opening riff to “Smells Like Teen Spirit”?

Did your college late nights involve David Letterman’s infamous Top 10 Lists? Were you telling all your friends “You Look Marvelous” in the vein of Billy Crystal’s Fernando Lamas? Do you consider “Weird” Al Yankovic a comic genius?

Do you remember the first time you heard “Rock Lobster” by The B-52s or “Radio Free Europe” by R.E.M.? Do you always have to play “New Year’s Day” on January 1st?

If those moments make the hair on your neck stand up or unlock core memories — you can thank college radio. If the soundtrack of your life involves bands like U2, R.E.M., Pearl Jam, Pixies, The Police, Fugazi, The Smiths, The Cure, Sonic Youth, Violent Femmes, Ramones or Talking Heads — thank college radio.

To learn more about “35,000 Watts” and to contribute, visit the film’s website and Kickstarter page.






  1. Sounds interesting, let’s hope that this project becomes a reality. Still waiting for the power pop movie that’s been in the works for…forever.

  2. thomas solimine

    If you grew up in New York in 1980’s then you know there was no station more influential than WLIR 92.7. That is the essence of what color radio was in the 1990’s.

  3. Yup! And it’s already got a documentary, Dare to be Different. Check it out if you haven’t already!

  4. Ken Fehner

    Hope you cover stations in the South like WVGS and WRAS for starters.

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