WTBR-FM

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WTBR-FM
WTBR-FM logo.png
City of license Pittsfield, Massachusetts
Branding 89.7 The Brave FM
Frequency 89.7 MHz
First air date June 1, 1974
Format Classic Rock
ERP 380 watts, Stereo
HAAT -35.0 meters
Class A
Facility ID 52749
Transmitter coordinates 42°27′34.00″N 73°16′31.00″W / 42.4594444°N 73.2752778°W / 42.4594444; -73.2752778
Callsign meaning Taconic Brave Radio
Former callsigns WTHS
Owner Pittsfield Public Schools
Webcast Listen Live
Website wtbrfm.com

WTBR-FM (89.7 FM, "89.7 The Brave FM") is a high school radio station broadcasting a Classic Rock music format. Licensed to Pittsfield, Massachusetts, USA, the station serves the Pittsfield area from inside Taconic High School on Valentine Road. The station is currently owned by the Pittsfield Public School Committee.

History[edit]

Over the past four decades, the station has helped jump-start the budding careers of many future radio professionals in the Berkshires and beyond. In particular, in the 1970s under the leadership of station director, Bob Cooper, the station flourished with a wide range of student programming and an organization that continued to build the impressive archive of vinyl records. With more than an estimated 10,000 records from the late 1960s into the 1980s, WTBR is truly a priceless gem. Over the years, the station continued to serve as a significant outlet for the school and community. Of note, NASA astronaut, Stephanie D. Wilson, was a member of the radio club and she hosted her own program on WTBR. A 1984 graduate of Taconic High School, Wilson would go on to become the second African-American woman in space, taking part in two successful NASA Discovery missions in 2006 and in 2007.

However, in the several years prior to 2006, the station had again become devoid of programming as student turnover had left WTBR with dead-air for a vast majority of the time.

But, in 2006, a group of radio veterans, led by longtime WUPE-FM News Director Larry Kratka, lit a new spark for the station. Kratka brought in several radio veterans, such as Tom Harrison, Joe Mindlin and Brad Lorenz, all of whom were on-air personalities and producers for WUPE-FM; John Krol, who is the former morning news anchor and Opinion show host for WNAW/WMNB-North Adams and former Berkshire Bureau Chief for WAMC-Northeast Public Radio. Krol's "Good Morning Pittsfield" serves as the anchor morning program with news from the Berkshire Eagle and features interviews with local public officials, business leaders, journalists and other community leaders. The station also features unique specialty music programs including the only underground music program in the Berkshires, Mike's Amazing Oldies featuring long lost resurrected music from the vault of host Mike Pezzo, the hard rocking metallic edge of Wounded Radio hosted by Tom Harrison, classic '80s rock and dance of Classic TBR with Brad Lorenz and Joe Mindlin and the longest-running Polish polka show in the area, Polka Express. New to the adult staff is Terry Lambert who handles Tuesday evenings from 7-11pm with rock and sports. Larry Kratka is Student Advisor and has also been active in upgrading the technology at the station, including new equipment, upgrading to stereo, and allowing WTBR to transmit its full power allowed by FCC license. -In June 2010, WTBR became the first station in Western Massachusetts to take part in the American Cancer Society's 'Relay for Life' in Berkshire County Central/South AND move to a different site and broadcast the event in stereo for 26 hours. The next year in 2011, they followed suit and became the official radio station for the Relay for Life in Berkshire County Central/South. In 2011 and 2012, WTBR broadcast 26 hours for Special Olympics COP ON TOP fundraiser and received and award for its hard work.

In 2012, WTBR's Sunday lineup added a popular talk show, Ask The Professor, which used to air on Sunday mornings on WUPE-FM.

2012-2013 Current Student Staff[edit]

SENIORS

  • Austin Clairmont
  • Ricky Driggers (DJ Driggles)
  • Matt Driscol
  • Will Gilette
  • Dylan LeSage
  • Shannon Moon
  • Kyael Moss
  • Jen Norton
  • Kyle Nutting
  • Brad Perotti
  • Matt Pierce
  • Colin Russell
  • Craig Spencer-Hopkins
  • Nick Swain
  • Miranda Tremblay
  • Rachael Ward

TOTAL: 17

JUNIORS

  • Katie Lemay (Princess of Pain)
  • Dani Grandbois
  • Ashley Reyes

TOTAL:3


SOPHOMORES

  • Omar

TOTAL:1

FRESHMEN


TOTAL STUDENTS: 21

Current Adult Staff[edit]

  • Ben Coe
  • Lucy Flossic, Polka Express
  • Shane Gaetani, The Rockfest
  • Bill Gustavis, Polka Express
  • Tom Harrison, Wounded Radio
  • John Krol, Good Morning, Pittsfield
  • Tara Lemay (The Mistress Of Mayhem) Hair Cutz
  • Brad Lorenz
  • Mike Pezzo, Mike's Amazing Oldies
  • Punk Rock Jon

Events[edit]

Over the years, WTBR has provided entertainment and broadcast live from events throughout Berkshire County. In 2009, WTBR was the only local radio station to actually broadcast the entire show from their remote location.


  • American Cancer Society's Relay For Life
  • Hinsdale Block Party
  • Massachusetts Special Olympics' Cop On Top
  • Pittsfield Third Thursday
  • Pittsfield Ethnic Fair
  • Pittsfield Colonials Baseball (both home and away games)
  • Shriner's Bowl-A-Thon
  • United Cerebral Palsy Telethon

External links[edit]