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WCDB Fest Brings Local Musicians and Creatives to Albany

By: Danielle Modica | April 18, 2022

University at Albany’s public radio station, WCDB-FM 90.9, hosted their first annual WCDB Fest on Saturday, Apr. 9 at the Albany Barn. The festival, celebrating the station’s 44th anniversary, included an awards ceremony, live performances by local bands, alongside art and food vendors.

WCDB Fest Poster

(Credit: WCDB, used with permission)

WCDB’s Co-External Events Directors, UAlbany junior Mehr Sharma and alum Rachel Freeman, began organizing the event months in advance to secure the ideal venue and musical acts.

“We wanted to celebrate the musicians and bands that make up the Capital Region by giving them a spotlight to shine and feel pride in what they have offered the local music scene,” Freeman said.

The afternoon kicked off with an art fair with various band merchandise and handmade works from a lineup of local creatives. Vendors included a selection of vinyl from Lark Street Records, jewelry from Nocturnal Fairy Co. and Osteal Blossoms, as well as art prints from Yamaguchie, Sharma’s own Autwine, and more.

Attendees browsing Lark Street Records’ vinyl table

(Photo Credit: Peter Herrick @PeterHerrick on Instagram, used with permission)

Albany-based non-profit organization Kyle Robinson Memorial Foundation (KRMF) also tabled with t-shirts and fundraising information. KRMF was founded in memory of the late Kyle Robinson, a Music Industry student at the College of Saint Rose and respected local musician. Donation proceeds go towards scholarships for music students.

“I am so proud of our station and the community outreach we were able to achieve [through the fest],” WCDB Station Manager Fiona Donovan said.

One of the art vendor table set-ups

(Photo Credit: Peter Herrick @PeterHerrick on Instagram, used with permission)

Issues of local independent zines, or self-published magazines, Doors at Seven and HyperSaturation were also available for purchase. Troy’s Cafe Euphoria and downtown Albany’s Korean-American restaurant Son of Egg were the fest’s featured food vendors.

“[Our goal of WCDB Fest] was to combine everyone’s love for local businesses, artists, and musicians under one roof,” Freeman said. “It was great to see everyone celebrating what makes WCDB the ‘Capital District’s Best’ and the local community thrive.”

Capital Region-based musicians Jack Lynch, Grampfather, Canella and Safety Meeting performed live throughout the art fair portion.

Bass guitarist Jack Lynch during his festival set.

(Photo Credit: Peter Herrick @PeterHerrick on Instagram, used with permission)

Albany alternative hip-hop artist Mr. Every Day performed during a red carpet transition into an awards ceremony recognizing the Capital Region’s musical best. Award-winners were selected from a list of nominees through public voting in March.

“The DJs collectively chose nominees and voting was open to the public, allowing the community to support their favorite artists,” Freeman said.

Saratoga Springs-native band Laveda opened the ceremony with a short set, followed by Scrambled and Stella and the Reptilians at different points throughout the show. Over ten awards were introduced to local music scene leaders and musicians across all genres from folk to electronic. See below for a list of award winners.

WCDB Awards Winners 2022:

Best Punk/Hardcore/Metal Artist: DiRTYBANDAiD

Best Country/Folk Artist: Bear Grass

Best Electronic Artist: Soo Doo Koo

Best Jazz Artist: Colleen Pratt

Best R&B/Funk/Soul Artist: The E-Block

Best Hip-Hop/Rap Artist: Scrambled

Best Alternative Rock/Indie Artist: Senior Living

Rising Artist of the Year: Ladybird

Song of the Year: “Quiet Love” by Canella

Album/EP of the Year: “Anniversaries” by Senior Living

Artist of the Year: Stella and the Reptilians

WCDB DJ of the Year: Eddie Smith

Music Scene MVP of the Year: Rachel Freeman

For more information on WCDB, visit their website, Instagram, or tune in to 90.9FM.


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