Michael Black

Radio Program Manager

I was born in Fairmont, West Virginia, and grew up mostly in and around the Rochester area. I got my radio start at WBKT at Brockport High school as a sophomore, and was its station manager in my senior year in high school. I had caught the radio & TV bug. While in high school, I started working for the local commercial station in town (WWBK/WJBT). While attending SUNY Brockport, I helped build WBSU-FM, and started as an intern for WXXI-TV. I started working for WXXI in the broadcast operations area, and eventually became an online television editor. In 1985, I took a position at WHYY in Philadelphia in their engineering department, working primarily as a video editor, but also provided audio support for TV productions and for some radio productions, including NPR's Fresh Air.

In 1988, I took a position at Hobart & William Smith Colleges as station manager for WEOS, and transformed the station into a public radio service serving the Finger Lakes, including laying the ground work for WITH in Ithaca, which is on the air today. This included expanding coverage area, and increasing local programming that in some cases, went national. A lot of students I worked with have gone into the broadcast industry, including Jonas Schwartz, Chris Carlin, Josh Horowitz, and Dana Glaser, to name a few. I even dabbled in on air play-by-play sports, garnering a Media person of the year award from the USILA for lacrosse broadcasts.

In 2007, I rejoined WXXI as the radio program manager, to oversee WXXI-AM and WRUR, and work on new projects, which now include our partnership with HWS with WEOS and helping to launch WITH in Ithaca. I have a passion for public media and new music, and strive to continue to grow public media. 

I have a passion for craft beers, and actively support the local brewing community. I also am a chili-head! Bring the heat!

Ways to Connect

Get the inside scoop on the 2015 Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival with Democrat and Chronicle music critic Jeff Spevak.

Every morning during the festival, Spevak will be joining Scott Regan on “Open Tunings” to run down the day’s best bets and the most intriguing artists. He’ll also throw in performance reviews and a few tips to make your trip to the festival a lot more fun. Listen to “Open Tunings” every morning at 10:30 on WRUR-FM 88.5 and look for Spevak at the D&C Digital Jazz Club, open in the festival merchandise tent every evening.

On Tuesday, May 5, beginning at 6PM, WRUR will pay tribute to Liz Michael, host of The Electric Circus. Liz passed away on April 12, 2015 after a long and valiant battle with cancer.

Liz had a long, wonderful history with WRUR and WXXI. While attending the University of Rochester, she hosted the first iteration of The Electric Circus, and then The Folk Lunch. After college she worked for WXXI, producing Fascinatin’ Rhythm and arts features, and hosting 1370 Jazz Nite on WXXI-AM.

Different Radio, WRUR, brought St. Vincent to a sold out Water Street Music Hall. She signed a poster for us and you have an opportunity to have this one of kind item in your collection and at the same time, 

  support different radio! The opening bid is $20 for this priceless item! To bid on this great poster and support WRUR, go to the Auction Site.


Apr 21, 2015

TEST of API after fix

Want to play a Tiny Desk Concert at NPR Music? 

  Enter the Tiny Desk Contest by submitting your YouTube video of an original song by January 19 and you could perform at NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C. The winner also plays the Lagunitas "CouchTrippin' to Austin" showcase in March. For more details, visit the submission page: http://npr.org/tinydeskcontest.

Official rules here: http://tinydeskcontest.npr.org/rules

Ed Miles courtesy of the Artist

Join NPR Music at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, Sept. 28, for a live video webcast featuring rock 'n' roll 

  legend Robert Plant and his band. We'll webcast the show from the Nonesuch At BAM music festival in Brooklyn. The former Led Zeppelin singer released a new solo album, titled lullaby and... The Ceaseless Roar, earlier this month.

The All Weather Lunch can still be heard on WITH-FM, Ithaca, our sister station. You can listen to it on 90.1FM in the southern Finger Lakes area, or online here.

WRUR-FM 88.5 will begin airing the daily talk show, Connections with Evan Dawson, beginning Monday, September 8th from 12-2 p.m. Connections is produced by WXXI and is also available on AM 1370(Rochester),WEOS-FM (Geneva), as well as online at WXXI.org, WRUR.org and WEOS.org.

Gabriel Green

This Is All Yours, in the U.S. on September 23rd, and they're coming to New York City to premiere the new material in an exclusive First Listen Live on Different Radio and NPR Music on September 2nd at 9pm.