I was introduced to BRU by a friend in high school. I was into The Cure, Depeche Mode, and Nine Inch Nails. Here was a radio station that played my music: alternative rock. From then on, I tuned into BRU to listen to my favorites and be introduced to new artists that would become my faves: Stone Temple Pilots, Poe, Cake, the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Blur, Sound Garden, The Cranberries, Weezer, Tori Amos, and Beck; and new artists today like Portugal the Man, The Killers, Paramore, Lorde, and K. Flay.
I am flooded with memories of my youth and young adulthood. I attended BRU’s Birthday Bash as a senior when Belly headlined the show at The Met when it was next to Lupo’s. Twelve Cuts Above the Rest would blast out of the radio on Fridays when I worked at Bess Eaton. As I got older, I looked forward the The Retro Lunch, where BRU played retro music from the 80s and 90s. In December around the holidays, there would be a whole week devoted only to 90s music. And I took advantage of their Big F’in’ Deal where you got $50 gift cards for only $25 from local restaurants, which included my favorite Julian’s.
I’m regretting that I wasn’t able to attend all their summer concert series, birthday bashes, or even their Nothing But 90s Party this past December. I always assumed they would be around like Del’s lemonade or Providence Water Fire.
I am filled with sadness that another RI institution is about to close its doors for good, especially because future generations like my kids won’t have BRU around to listen to. It serves as another reminder that nothing is permanent, ever. Everything does and will change whether we want them to or not. I wish I could start a petition to save BRU or get BRU connected to another alternative rock radio station that shares their philosophy of community, provides a supportive venue to play new artists’ music, and teaches future radio broadcasters. I wish I could do something more. I don’t want a feeling of depression to set in, a sense of helplessness, or anger to seep in. And I’m terrified that I’ll turn on my radio dial to 95.5 FM, and there will be static or worse.
I’m going to listen to BRU today and as long as I receive its broadcast signal. Tomorrow it could be gone. I’m forever grateful that BRU served as the soundtrack and background music of my life.