During our Spring 2020, Powered by People fundraising campaign, we’re posting personal essays by CKUA announcers and listeners about what our service means to them. Here’s one by listener Joe Kelly.
I moved to Alberta from Newfoundland back in 2015. Packing up your life to start over somewhere else is a daunting experience.
While I had some family in various cities, I knew no one and I will admit it was a very lonely feeling. The loneliness and isolation I felt at this time was akin to the experiences felt by many today during this pandemic. I, however, do not feel those emotions during this time even though I am still mostly alone and on my own.
Not long after I moved to Alberta, I discovered CKUA. I’ve told my story many times before, but I remember tuning into the station for the first time and Grant [Stovel] was playing the Budos Band. Not only was I hearing music I’ve never heard before, but I was also hearing music I never knew I needed in my life.
I was amazed to find it wasn’t just a host playing music but also lovingly talking about the music in detail with information behind it. This was radio for people who love music. I continued to listen and slowly I was tuning into CKUA daily. It had become a routine. A tradition. A part of who I am.
I find it impossible to feel alone and isolated right now during this pandemic because of CKUA. I know there are many feeling the same way out there. It is always special when you run into a supporter of CKUA. It’s a sense of family that warms my heart the same way a fire and a glass of wine does on a cold winter’s night.
Almost every person I’ve met since moving to Alberta is linked back to CKUA. I always loved the slogan “Music-Story-Connection”. I find it difficult to feel alone when there is a story to be told or a song to be sung. It provides a little extra warmth for my heart and the desire to share that with others. That’s what it’s all about and that’s why I love CKUA.